mid-day editorial: Battling drugs should be more than a joint effort

Apr 11, 2017, 04:25 IST | mid-day correspondent

Drug peddlers are selling narcotics to teens across city colleges. Though this newspaper ran a front-page report on the issue, along with relevant proof, the police dismissed it as a one-off incident and refused to acknowledge what is clearly a professional network.

Over the past week, reporters of this paper conducted a sting operation in the Western suburb belt near three colleges - SNDT, NMIMS and Mithibai -and exposed how charas and ganja are made accessible to college students. Drugs are being sold outside campuses, often during college hours.

Conducting their nefarious business sitting under the cool shade of trees - often in the guise of running legitimate shops - drug peddlers have assembled a sizeable clientele of college students. While cops have swung into action now, it's disappointing that these dealers were allowed to set up shops near education institutes, in the first place.

While the police focus on immediate crackdown, colleges should up the ante when it comes to awareness about doping. We want to see more awareness programmes on the subject inside college campuses. Students must be educated and informed that doping is not "cool" at all should be avoided at all cost. Youngsters should be made aware that substance abuse can harm them as well as their families in the long run.

There's an urgent need to reach out to college goers, with the help of counsellors and professionals, to curb the menace of drug abuse among youths. Cops should launch surprise checks across college campuses, in civilian attire, to nab the peddlers. At home, parents need not be alarmist, but clued in and ready to intervene to help out the young ones. Combating drug use requires a multi-pronged effort and has to be fought on different fronts.

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