Tuesday, 24 May, 2022

Save youths from drug addiction

The number of drug addicts has been rising countrywide at an alarming rate. Drug addiction has become all-pervasive. Illicit drug shows its sway from the lanes and by-lanes of cities and towns to the remote corner of rural Bangladesh. Even the official policy of 'zero tolerance to drug' has failed to curb the social menace. It is mainly the youths who fall victims to the aggression of drugs. Of the factors that lead people to drug addiction are inability to cope with failure in an atmosphere of unusual competition, social unrest, tension, boredom, loneliness and changing family structure. The main reason behind the rise in the number of drug addicts is easy availability of narcotics. Presently, anyone can purchase it sitting at home by placing an order over phone or online. The all-pervasive menace has been crippling the country's youth force. According to sources at the Department of Narcotics Control, the number of drug addicts has been estimated at seven million countrywide.

However, many drug users are finding ways to come back to normal life; but the existing government facilities are insufficient to cope with the large number of patients. The county has only four rehab centres in four divisional headquarters. There are no rehabs in 23 districts, including Meherpur, Panchagarh and Kurigram – the districts bordering India.

Altogether, there are 199 beds in the state-run rehabs. But, these centres are grappled with a bed crisis most of the time. As to why, patients go to 329 private facilities for treatment where its cost is too high beyond the reach of general people. In most cases, private rehabs do not maintain the rules set by the narcotics control department. In many cases, patients get deceived although they spend a large amount of money in name of treatment. Press reports say the government has taken an initiative to set up 200-bed rehab in each divisional headquarter and 100-bed rehab in each district headquarter. We believe the government will come forward to save our youths from the grip of drug abuse by building the rehabs at the earliest.