225 officials 'report' their addiction to drugs to Govt

ITANAGAR, Nov 24: As the state government has waged a war on drugs starting with its own employees, altogether 225 government employees in Arunachal Pradesh have reported themselves to be under the influence of some sort of natural or synthetic drugs, official sources said on Wednesday.

This latest development comes following a Govt notification that made it mandatory for all employees to report about their addiction to drugs to the state government amid the ‘rapid’ increase in drug abuse not only among the youth but also among the government employees of the State.

State Chief Secretary Naresh Kumar directed the Health & Family Welfare Department to come out with a robust action plan to rehabilitate the drug addicted government officials in a time bound manner. He suggested that the addicts may be categorised into three categories based on their level of addiction. Necessary counselling, treatments, rehabilitation, and follow-ups should be as per their level of addiction, he suggested.

The Chief Secretary further exhorted that the partner NGOs for every district may be included in follow-up programmes of the addicts after their rehabilitation programme as continuing support to avoid relapse. This task is to be accomplished without any delay, he emphatically said.

Moreover, to check the level of drug addiction among government officials, in the first phase, the officials of the Police, Education and Health & Family Welfare departments be randomly selected and tested which shall be coordinated by the concerned Deputy Commissioner, SP and DMO. Such checking shall be completed by December 2021, he added.

The Chief Secretary, who held a meeting today to discuss the issue of drug abuse and de-addiction strategy with Principal Secretary (Home) Rajeev Verma, Secretary (Health & Family Welfare) P Parthiban, Secretary (Tax, Excise & Narcotics) Y W Ringu, ADGP Ravindra Yadav and others, directed the Anti-Narcotics Cell to aggressively strike the source of supply of narcotic drugs and catch key drug peddlers, an official release said.