TEZPUR, June 27 - District Health Society, Sonitpur and NCC Tezpur College, Tezpur , observed the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking on Monday.
Marking the day, a mass awareness rally was taken out with the theme �Say no to drugs � a threat to life� highlighting the health and additional risks associated with the use of drugs, which was flagged off by Dr Juri Bhattacharya, Joint Director of Health Services, Sonitpur. Among those who took part in the rally were Dr. Durlov Ch Saikia, District Surveillance Officer, Sonitpur, Prof Mitali Nath, In-charge, NCC, Tezpur College, students of nursing school, students of Government Boys School, Bengali Boys and Bengali Girls� High School, Rashtrabhasha, Academy High school, Darrang College, various NGOs, NCC, and other prominent persons of the town.
The rally was followed by an awareness meeting at the conference room of the Joint Director of Health Services. From the president�s chair, Dr Durlov Ch Saikia, District Surveillance Officer, Sonitpur said that drug use disorders are both preventable and treatable. He also stated that by resolution no. 42/112 of December 7, 1987, the UN General Assembly decided to observe June 26 as the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking as an expression of its determination to strengthen action and cooperation to achieve the goal of an international society free of drug abuse. The aim of the Day is to raise awareness of the major problem that illicit drugs represent to society. �Listen First � Listening to children and youth is the first step to help them grow healthy and safe. �It is an initiative to increase support for prevention of drug use that is based on science and is thus an effective investment in the well-being of children and youth, their families and their communities,� Dr Saikia said.
He added that addiction to narcotics is now recognised globally as one of the real dangers, which the world faces. It is very important to understand that it damages the individual and the society very silently. This �silent terrorism� of drug abuse destroys mankind and hence it is better to lead a healthy life and �Say No To Drugs the first time and every other time.� He also said that there are up to 200,000 preventable deaths each year from overdoses. Illicit drugs spawn criminal violence and weaken a State�s essential institutions,� he said adding that reports suggest that hepatitis C is causing the greatest harm among the estimated 12 million people who inject drugs worldwide. Out of this number, one in eight (1.6 million) is living with HIV and more than half (6.1 million) are living with hepatitis C, while around 1.3 million are suffering from both hepatitis C and HIV. Overall, three times more people who use drugs die from hepatitis C (222,000) than from HIV (60,000). However, the report stresses that despite recent advances in the treatment of hepatitis C, access remains poor, as its treatment remains very expensive in most countries.