Prof Dr Arup Ratan ChowdhuryPresident of MANAS and member of National Board of Drug Control
Smoking is the key to addiction. A study shows that smokers constitute 98 percent of drug addicts. Of them, 44 percent commit offences. Smokers are under pressure due to draconian law. But they are being addicted with yaba and other drugs. Lack of education among people, family disintegration, availability of drugs and satellite culture are responsible for drug menace. The government should start campaign against drug addiction in all educational institutions.
Khandakar Rakibur Rahman
Additional Secretary and DG of Department of Narcotics Control
Bangladesh is one of a handful of countries having mobile court operation to deal with some specific offences. The drug offenders languishing in jail in Bangladesh constitute 30 percent of the total drug prisoners across the globe. The law enforcers are performing their duties to arrest the drug offenders. It is not enough to eliminate the problem from the society. We have to create public awareness to fight the drug abuse effectively. The drug addicts should be treated well. They ought to be integrated into the mainstream society. Their employment is a must.
Dr Mamtazuddin Ahmed Mehdi
Lawyer, Supreme Court of Bangladesh
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina recently said people of the country should be inculcated with religious teaching and principles. She said the country is fighting militancy and drug abuse both. The guardians should play important role to keep their children away from drug addiction.
On many occasions, the drug peddlers go unpunished for faulty seizure list submitted by the investigation officer to the court. An offender can be awarded capital punishment for possessing huge quantity of drugs. But the punishment of a person arrested with drugs below a certain quantity is negligible. So, the law needs to be amended to ensure exemplary punishment to all classes of drug traders.
Security Analyst Major (retd)
Transaction to the tune of Tk 70 crore is being held for buying and selling drugs everyday. It is alarming for the country.
On many occasions, the law enforcers are involved in carrying drugs. Some days ago, Yaba tablets worth Tk 30 lakh were seized by RAB from a vehicle of a law enforcer. The situation of drugs has worsened in the country like Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore. But those countries have improved the situation through executing death sentence of drug offenders. A drug addict is a troublemaker to own family, office or society. The moral degradation of the society is responsible to some extent. So, I think strict law has to be applied to check the deadly aggression of drugs. Besides, implementation of law is urgent. Those who are playing sincere role in preventing crimes have to be awarded.
Film Actor and Filmmaker
The law enforcers claim that there are some 52 lakh drug addicts in the country. But I do not agree with this figure. I think that the number would be double. We all have to stand against drug instead of depending only on the government and law enforcing agencies. I have made a film on Yaba to make people aware. The drug addicts have to be made aware by the family first and then by the society. They have to be brought under treatment. After treatment is over, they have to be kept under monitoring for minimum one year. The youths are being drug addicts as they are not getting places for games and spending time.
I stayed in rehabilitation centre as a part of my involvement in anti-drug campaigns. I learned that two sections of boys and girls take drugs. One group belongs to the well-off society while the others are from poor families. The addicts from the extremely poor section can hardly be rehabilitated from drugs. They earn their bread from drug dwellers. They contribute to increasing the number of addicts by taking drugs by themselves. On another hand, the addicts from rich families can be rehabilitated partially. They feel lonely in their adolescence because of the busy life of their family members. They try to do something new out of their loneliness. There is a possibility of getting drug addict being misled by the bad guys. Bad people stay syndicated but good ones are divided. So, we have to form a syndicate of good people to promote healthy living.
Maulana Selim Hossain Azadi
Allah Rabbul Alameen in Surah Maidah clearly mentioned that alcohol and gambling are the acts of the evil.
You must return from this evil act to save the humanity from this great loss and remain in good for ever. Then all gave up it. After working in his whole life, our great Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (SM) established a drug free society in Medina. There is no crime in a drug free society and the Prophet showed it 1400 years ago. “I think it is possible to reach anti-drug message to every corners of the country if the government wants to use country’s five lakh mosques as media,” he said.
Prof Dr Zinat Huda
Department of Sociology at Dhaka University
Family bondage is a big issue. We have family bondage and it prevailed earlier in respect of all families. We have also religious values and some instructions from families. Now, parents are not able to spend time for their children. We are more careerists and appearing for the unequal competitions. So, the parents should see their faces on the mirror before blaming the addicted children. The media can play important role in this regard.
Strict measure is needed to control drugs. Capital punishment has to be ensured. At the same time, the families have to be aware of their children. Otherwise, it would not be possible to save the new generation from the aggression of the drugs.
Dr Farzana Rahman Dina
National Institute of Mental Health
I learnt from a female patient that she was involved in prostitution to make enough money to take drugs. A patient said she sold her daughter to get money to pay for drugs. Some mothers urged us to kill her son when they brought them (addicted sons) to the hospital as they were being exploited and tortured by their addicted sons.
In this circumstance, we can say that the effects of drug addiction are destructive. There is a point in our brain which enables us to feel extremely during ‘good’ and ‘bad’ situations. Drugs have some destructive features to simulate the brain extremely. An individual takes drugs from a little wish or under the influence of somebody else. When the ‘hobby’ turns addiction, the drug user becomes hectic in his/her efforts to reuse the drug. Drugs reduce brain capacity, affects mental health and physical function.
“Set goals and then drive for execution”
Lt. Col Touhidul Islam
Drictor (Operation), BGB
According to the recent statistics, some 9, 220 drug addicts are undergoing treatment at 145 drug rehabilitation centres. Some 5 lakh new drug addicts are being added every year. The number is increasing. Among the total drug addicts, 41 percent are unemployed and 14 percent students. That means, some 55 percent are dependent on others for money. They are somehow collecting money for purchasing drugs.
Some 50,000 cases are filed over drugs every year. But only 1,000 cases are settled. Thus, the criminals are rising in numbers.
We always try to highlight the consequence of drug-addicted persons while we work in film industry. We often see many roadside kids taking drug. We often avoid it. We don’t try to take them back from this path. We should make them aware of danger of the drug. We remain busy in our works. We don’t think of others. I think it is our nation’s failure and our society’s failure. We should not merely depend on our law enforcers for curbing drug menace, he added.
Mirza Mehedi Tamal,
Senior Reporter, Bangladesh Pratidin
Teknaf is now believed to be the smuggling gate and city of deadly drug like yaba tablets.
People in every sectors of this area are involved in drug business. Out of 133 villages in Teknaf, people of 100 villages are involved in yaba trade. On an average, one crore yaba tablets are entering the country through different borders of Teknaf every day, he said. Most of the youngsters in Teknaf are involved in yaba business.
Editor of Bangladesh Pratidin
CEO of News24 and Radio Capital
The parents and guardians of the children are worried about drug epidemic across the country. It is not possible for the law enforcers to resolve the problem alone. As long as the parents turn a blind eye to drug addition, the problem will not be stamped out from the society. The authorities concerned will have to detect the supply chain of drugs. The production and marketing of drugs need to be stopped.
Khandker Lutful Kabir
Director (CO) of
Rapid Action Battalion
As many as 17,000 drug related cases were settled last year. But the number of disposed cases is 36,000 this year. It is positive sign. Iran is one of the top 10 countries worst affected by drug abuse. Developed countries like the USA and France are also facing the problem. Public awareness is needed to control drug abuse. A neighbour should be aware of the activities of another neighbour to eliminate the drug addiction and other offences.
Film actor and former general secretary
of Bangladesh Film Actors' Association
I would like to urge all to produce more films than drama and campaign aginst drug abuse. It’s easy to enjoy TV drams on the television screen at home, but you have to go cinema hall to experience a film.
I don’t believe that the flow of Yaba from Teknaf can’t be stopped. I think Bangladesh is a land where everything is ‘possible’. If we move forward together, the solution will ultimately come under control. So I urge all to unite one single goal on this issue. Firstly, we have to set our goals and then drive for execution. In my life, I never smoked. Why cannot an individual avoid drug? We all have to do something for the country.
Ashikur Rahman Sraban
Senior Reporter, News24
One of my friends has got addicted to drugs while studying in university. He was a meritorious student but he got frustrated with the life day by day. Due to drug addiction, so far 300 people, including 39 parents, have been killed in the capital. Many women are taking yaba tablets for making zero figure, he added.