GUWAHATI, Sept 5 - A two-day workshop titled �Enhancing partnerships between law enforcement health and civil society organisations� was organised recently by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in the context of drug abuse and HIV, in association with the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) and Assam State AIDS Control Society (ASACS) here.
According to a press statement, the meeting was attended by senior police officials from all the north-eastern states, officials from AIDS control societies of the NE states, NACO, UNODC and other associations. Welcoming the participants, ASACS Project Director Dhiraj Choudhury stressed preparation of a roadmap through which the departments concerned could work together against drug abuse and HIV.
State Additional Director General of Police (CID) Mukesh Sahay in his speech said, �Drugs and crime are interrelated and drug abusers are both criminals and victims. Thus, building partnerships with different stakeholders is very important. Even community leaders must be taken on board.�
Secretary to the Government of Nagaland M Patton laid stress on community meetings on how the drug abusers could be rehabilitated.
UNODC Regional Representative Cristina Albertin said, �There are 246 million drug users and out of them 50 per cent are injecting drug users. Drug users normally use prescriptive drugs. The problem is growing and we should all work together.�
Additional Secretary NACO, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Navreet Singh Kang said, �There should be better understanding amongst the departments concerned and the law-enforcement agencies. The drug users must be given access to all kinds of health facilities and social support.� He also laid stress on conducting workshops at the grassroots level so that the workers directly could come in contact with the law-enforcing agencies.
Representative from the Indian Drug Users Forum, Abu said, �There are too many laws in the system. Some laws which are in favour of the drug users are not known to them. There is a need to relook into this issue.�
Ranjan Dwivedi, DGP, Home Guards, UP in his presentation said that every police station in the country must have an officer to deal with NGOs, CBOs to address various social issues, the press statement said.