With more and more people becoming drug addicts, Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) on Friday said that unseen forces are behind drug trafficking in Kashmir. Alarmed by unprecedented levels of drug addiction, President DAK Dr Nisar ul Hassan in a statement to KNS said that unseen forces are involved in peddling and promoting of drugs in Kashmir. They are using their touts and agents who receive financial and material assistance for trafficking drugs. Youth are particularly targeted and initially drugs are gifted to them till they become addicts. The menace of drug addiction which has engulfed a vast majority of our population is a wicked conspiracy to wipe out our hope and future. There is a strong network of drug peddlers who make these drugs available with fruit sellers to tea shops and gyms and they enjoy the patronage of certain forces behind the curtain. A survey by United Nations International Drug Control Programme in 2008 showed that there were more than 70,000 drug addicts in Kashmir including 4000 women and 70% of addicts were in the age group of 18 to 35 years. Another study had earlier revealed that more than 2 lakh people were on opiates and these figures have increased manifold in last 8 years. Now school-going children are hooked on and in a study 65-70% students in Kashmir are drug addicts which include gateway drugs too and around 26% are female students. Last year, concerned Minister on the floor of house said that police agents distribute drugs to youth. A senior professor and Dean Academic affairs of Kashmir in a seminar said on record that police is hand-in-glove with the drug mafia. Cannabis, the commonest substance abused, the crop of which is cultivated in Kashmir under the noose of law enforcing agencies.
2015 Kashmir Despatch