Aug 14: Union Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot addressed the gathering of 272 District Collectors, 31 State Secretaries, more than 500 NGOs / VOs, Officers of Narcotics Control Bureau, Doctors and Professionals of NDDTC, AIIMS, and all the officers involved with “Nasha Mukt Bharat” campaign in the States and Districts here today through a Webcast of NIC to provide a significant impetus to the launch of the campaign. He also launched four Campaign Posters. Ministers of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Shri Krishan Pal Gurjar, Shri Ram Das Athawale and Shri Rattan Lal Kataria also addressed on the occasion. Secretary, M/o SJ&E Shri R. Subrahmanyam delivered the welcome address. The programme also showcased Nasha Mukt Bharat campaign through a Power Point Presentation by Smt. Radhika Chakravarthy, Joint Secretary, M/o SJ&E which encompass the modalities and the activities to be carried out during the campaign period.
In his address Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot said that the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has formulated ‘Nasha Mukt Bharat Campaign’ being implemented in 272 districts which are identified as most affected in terms of usage of substances. State Governments and the 272 District Collectors are going to launch the Nasha Mukht Bharat Campaign on 15th August 2020 which will run for 7 months till 31st March 2021. District and State level Nasha Mukt Bharat Committees formed would devise a strategy and Action plan for the campaign. These committees would ensure that campaign activities are effectively implemented, and the objectives of the campaign are met. These 272 districts have been identified based on the inputs received from Narcotics Control Bureau and the findings on the comprehensive National survey done by the Ministry.
Shri Gehlot said that the Government is committed to Nasha Mukht Bharat. The financial allocation of Rs. 43 crore in 2017 has been enhanced to Rs. 260 crore in 2020. This fivefold enhancement shows that the government attaches great importance to this campaign. He also congratulated States Governments for effectively running the NAPDDR schemes.
The Campaign focuses on 272 most affected districts by launching a three-pronged attack combining efforts of Narcotics Bureau, Outreach/Awareness by Social Justice and Treatment through the Health Department. The Campaign Plan has the following components:
- Awareness generation programmes;
- Focus on Higher Educational institutions, University Campuses and Schools;
- Community outreach and identification of dependent population;
- Focus on Treatment facilities in Hospital settings; and
- Capacity Building Programmes for Service Provider.
Substance abuse is emerging to be a matter of concern in the country having adverse consequences not just for the person using drugs, but on the family and society at large. Prevention has proven to be the most effective strategy to counter this problem. Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment being the Nodal Ministry for Drug Demand Reduction coordinates, implements and monitors several interventions which include prevention, assessment of extent of the problem, treatment and rehabilitation of users, dissemination of information and generation of awareness among public. To assess the magnitude of the
problem of substance use in the country, Ministry has done a comprehensive National Survey on Extent and Pattern of Substance Use to ascertain the proportion of Indian population using various substances and those affected by substance use disorders. The findings of the National Survey were published in the year 2019.