Legislation underway to establish rehab centers in all hospitals; says Shehryar Afridi

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ISLAMABAD: Minister for Narcotics Control Shehryar Khan Afridi Friday said that the ministry has started legislation process to rehabilitate the drug addicts and all resources would be used to bring them back to the mainstream and transform them into productive citizens.

Addressing the students and faculty members at Iqra University Islamabad Campus, the minister said that those drugs addicts lying under bridges, nullahs and jungle areas would be taken care of now.

“Drugs addicts have been abandoned by the society and even by their own family members. The addicts have further been pushed into isolation and drug peddlers clutch them more. The society has a responsibility towards the drugs victims. We need to hate drugs not drugs victims. State would take care of the drug victims now,” the minister said.

He said Pakistan’s biggest asset is youth and the government would safeguard them from menace of drugs.

“Over 65 percent of our population that is youth who need to be prepared to take social responsibilities. Education which had to civilise us has unfortunately divided and isolated us. Personal ambitions and personal targets should not be making youth anti-social, self- centered and irresponsible,” the minister maintained.

He said elite schools and colleges are major targets of drug barons.

“Drugs have penetrated our youth and they don’t know the challenge we are faced with.

Peer pressure and competition are major reasons for spread of drugs. In this age of information, the world is at your doorsteps. Drugs is a major source of easy money which is then used in subversive activities including terrorism,” he said.

“Synthetic drugs are major challenge for the colleges and universities. Private sector drug rehabilitation centres have become a lavish business and rich families are being fleeced by the rehabilitation centres”.

The minister the youth need to be aware of the drugs menace as well as their parents and that is why we have developed this Zindagi application for cellular phones.

He said Pakistan has developed a databank of criminals involved in drugs, terrorism and money laundering.

He urged all the universities to make it mandatory for each student and parents to download this Zindagi application and use it to be aware of this challenge so as awareness on drugs may help save youth from the drugs menace.

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