Enactment of stringent laws need of the hour to tackle drug menace in Kashmir


Believe it or not but the official data reveals that over 36,000 ladies from Jammu and Kashmir – young and middle-aged are addicted to cannabis. Over 8,000 women take sedative drugs.

Drug menace has been gripping the Valley as an alarming number of people mostly youth are getting addicted.

According to the Government of India, there are nearly 10 lakh drug addicts in Jammu and Kashmir. This is an unprecedented level of drug addiction on a land considered the abode of saints and pious.

Nearly 1.50 lakh male population are addicted to cannabis only. A large number of people have become addicted to Heroin, Opium, Cocaine, Crack, Marijuana, Inhalants, and prescription drugs.

“The idea of the rising number of drug peddlers and drug addicts present in Kashmir Valley can be gauged from the fact that every day, police on average arrest 3 to 4 drug peddlers and addicts,” said one of the renowned doctors from Kashmir, wishing not to be named. He suggested that instead of slapping Public Safety Act on the peddlers and addicts, there is a need to enact strict laws and even capital punishment is an option.

President, Doctors Association Kashmir Dr Nisar-ul-Hasan said unseen forces are behind this drug trafficking in Kashmir. “If you make it available, youth have a tendency for these things. So they go into it once they take it, they become addicted for life. But who are these people who are behind drug peddling, getting these drugs to Kashmir? These unseen forces are peddling and promoting this wicked trade in Kashmir,” Dr Nisar told the news agency Kashmir News Trust.

“If you see in the rural areas, these (drugs) are available with the fruit sellers, tea shops. They are available even at gyms. You can’t get rid of this menace unless you stop its availability in the markets.”

While advocating capital punishment for drug peddlers, Dr Nisar said that in China for just promoting one fake drug, the Chinese held the drug administration accountable and various officials were given capital punishment. As a result of which you won’t find fake, spurious, and sub-standard drugs in China, capital punishment acts as a deterrent,” he said.

A recent study by the Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (IMHANS), Srinagar, has revealed that J&K has surpassed Punjab in drug abuse cases.

Dr Asif who is posted in one of the hospitals in Srinagar agreed that stringent laws will certainly put brakes on the drug menace. “Laws are always for the welfare of the citizens but in a society bereft of any morality, laws can be misused,” he cautioned.

He said it is good that under the government’s drug deaddiction policy, drug addicts are treated and counseled, but what about the drug peddlers? Who will take care of them?, he questioned and demanded severe punishment for them.

Another doctor wishing anonymity said that a strict mechanism should be devised to handle drug peddlers. [KNT]


Neyaz Elahi

Neyaz Elahi, who switched from Electronic to Print Media is a Kashmir based Accredited Journalist who has written extensively on Kashmir for local, national and international web portals. He is currently associated with Srinagar based News Agency Kashmir News Trust (KNT).

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