Kerala: A people’s movement is the need of the hour to fight the rising menace of drug abuse in the state, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has said.
“An effective participation of people’s organisations can curb the availability of drugs to an extent. This menace can’t be stopped with the sole intervention of the Government. Various organisations, NGOs and residents’ associations with due representation of women could bring in a drastic change in our society by wiping out the drug menace in a responsible manner. In fact, they should take this up as an ‘agenda,” Vijayan said after conducting the state-level inauguration of International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking organised by Excise Department at VJT Hall here on Sunday.
“Our Government is committed to bringing in change and hence the Excise Department will formulate an action plan soon for curbing the increase in the drug abuse in the state. The plan will be implemented in such a way that no external forces could interfere with it”, Vijayan added. Delivering the presidential address, Excise Minister T P Ramakrishnan said that the government would strengthen the enforcement in the coming days and an awareness mission will be established to control the menace.
He also pointed out that the government would start de-addiction centres at all district headquarters. Ramakrishnan added that narcotic abuse would not be wiped out by simply banning them and hence the government stood firm on the policy of liquor abstinence rather than liquor prohibition. A five-minute short film featuring actor Prithviraj, aimed at creating awareness among students about the evils of drugs, was also screened. Te officials also took a pledge on the occasion.
Excise Commissioner Rishiraj Singh welcomed the gathering, while Additional Excise Commissioner Jeevan Babu delivered the vote of thanks. V S Sivakumar MLA and P Marapandiyan, Additional Chief Secretary, Tax Department, also spoke on the occasion.