AIZAWL, Aug 8 - Mizoram Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla has underscored the need for concerted efforts to fight against the growing drug menace in the state.
Lal Thanhawla, who released a �baseline survey on extent and pattern of drug use in Mizoram�, said his government is seeking collaboration with the Myanmar government to curb the cross-border drug traffickers across the porous India and Myanmar border in Mizoram.
He also called for collective efforts from the government, NGOs and the churches. The survey reveals many shocking facts about the drug abuse in Mizoram. The state�s Social Welfare Department (SWD) has just completed the baseline survey, making Mizoram the first state in India to conduct such a complete survey on drug abuse. The SWD secretary said the survey found many shocking facts about drug abuse in Mizoram and showed the need and urgency to fight drug abuse on a war footing manner.
The survey was carried out in all the eight districts of Mizoram by 32 researchers, interviewing 2633 drug users whose average was 28. Of the 2,633 drug users interviewed, 80 per cent were males, 10 per cent were female and one per cent was transgenders.
Most of the drug users said that they had started taking drugs after seven to 12 years since they started schooling.
The survey revealed that 81.6 per cent of drug users were jobless, while 32 per cent drug users among male had permanent jobs. Among the female drug users, 12.9 per cent sold drugs and 33 per cent were commercial sex workers.
Pharmaceutical opioids are the common abused drugs in Mizoram, followed by heroin, sedative drugs and inhalants (volatile solvents).
The survey also revealed that 48 per cent of the drug users were getting treatment from OPDs in different hospitals, while 39.9 per cent were provided treatment from IPDs. Another 35 per cent were getting OST (Opioid Substitution Treatment).
Overdose was commonest among the heroin users with 47 per cent followed by detro-propoxyphene (like spasmo- proxyvon and parvon spas). Of the drug users who were overdosed, only 3.2 per cent got naxolone injection, which is the best treatment for opioid overdose.
Revealing that most of the female drug users were jobless, the survey suggested that providing jobs to them would reduce drug use among female.
The survey also emphasized the importance of providing education to the youths and prevent them from using tobacco at the early age.