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Over 66L drug users in Punjab: Parliamentary panel report 6.97 lakh children hooked on drugs

According to the report, as many as 6.97 lakh children — aged 10-17 years — are hooked on drugs in Punjab Of these, 18,100 are consuming cocaine Around 3.43 lakh children are taking opioid drugs, including heroin

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Over 66L drug users in Punjab: Parliamentary panel report 6.97 lakh children hooked on drugs

New Delhi: The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Social Justice and Empowerment in its report titled “Drug abuse among young persons: Problems and solutions” has expressed shock over the fact that the menace of drug addiction has been spreading fast among adults, young adults and even children in India. The report was tabled in the Lok Sabha today.

Around 72,000 children are taking ‘inhalants’ in Punjab
The committee — in their report — said they were pained to see that opioids, sedatives and inhalants were widely prevalent among children aged 10-17 years. It was Punjab, Haryana, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Maharashtra, NCT of Delhi, Odisha, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal that were the worst affected states and the UTs. The situation among adults aged 18-75 years was equally bad in these states.

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According to the report, as many as 6.97 lakh children — aged between 10-17 years — are hooked on drugs in Punjab. Of these, 18,100 children are consuming cocaine. Around 3.43 lakh children are taking opioid drugs that include heroin. The report further revealed that 72,000 children are taking ‘inhalants’ in Punjab.

The PSC said they were aghast to find that 10,4,32,000 children in the age group of 10-17 years were estimated to have been using various substances. The panel also noted that the focused thematic study, conducted by the Department of Social Justice and Empowerment, on school and college going children in 10 locations from all regions of India revealed that the most common substance used ever was tobacco followed by alcohol.

The situation is no better when it comes to drug abuse in adults. As per the report, Punjab has over 66.70 lakh drug users, including 21.36 lakh consuming different types of opioids.

“The committee is very distressed to note that the number of drug users in states such as Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra is exorbitant,” reads the report.

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