The issue of increasing narcotic and alcohol abuse in educational institutions is a cause for concern, with drug peddlers targeting this young and vulnerable segment. Drugs such as hash-laced brownies, cocaine and heroine are freely available, even in villages. Goa Police say it’s high time to sensitize students to this growing menace. A short film on the same is also on the anvil
From the corridors of schools to hostels of professional colleges, in villages and urban areas alike, drugs are freely available in Goa and more young people are getting ensnared in its vice.
According to the Times of India, despite the lack of statistical evidence, anecdotal experience suggests that hash-laced brownies, cocaine and heroine are easily available within the school’s premises as well as outside their campuses.
According to psychiatrist Ravindra Agarwal who has been counseling several addicts over the years, marijuana is a lot cheaper compared to other substances and youth associate it with creativity and off-beat mood.
The highest addictions are to cannabis, heroin, and cocaine which are freely available in schools. In the party circuit, ecstasy, meth and LSD are more prevalent. “The risk is highest in hostels of professional colleges, where parental supervision is the least. Peer pressure is highest and the need to fit in a great motivator. Children use these drugs as a way of coping with stress,” he said.
In its bid to nip this is the bud, the Anti-Narcotics Cell of the Goa Police has been holding awareness programs in various schools.
According to the Herald, conceding that an increasing number of teenagers are becoming victims of narcotic and alcohol abuse, the Goa Police emphasized the need to create awareness among the public and students about the ill-effects of addiction.
North SP Chandan Choudhary suggested that education, sensitization, and awareness, besides prosecution of offenders, are the need of the hour. “A lot of teenagers are being trapped in drug and alcohol abuse, and it is important to tap it at an early stage. It is very important for social institutions, police authorities and the administration to go amongst the people, students and the schools to educate them about the ill-effects of drugs and alcohol,” she said at a Drug Abuse Awareness Campaign held in Merces on Saturday, which also saw the participation of various organizations like Human Touch and Alcoholics Anonymous.
According to this source, she also reiterated that while prosecuting the offenders is one way to curb the menace, the more effective way would be to educate and sensitize.
Taking a few other measures, she directed police in north districts to crack down on shops selling tobacco products within 100 meters radius of educational institutions.
According to a Times of India report, SP Choudhary has also mooted the idea of a short film on the ill-effects of drugs and addiction to be made. The 20-minute film, which will be uploaded on various online platforms, can be shown in over 80 educational institutions simultaneously, as opposed to the current method of awareness lectures being conducted by the ANC in various schools and colleges, which is not able to cover all educational institutions.