A Seminar was held on Tuesday at the Quaid-i-Azam University on the challenges of drug abuse among the youth and concrete measures taken by the University to control the menace. Convenor sub-Committee on the Standing Committee on Narcotics Control, Senator Lt. General Abdul Qayyum HI (M) Retd was guest of Honour.
Senator Lt. General Abdul Qayyum HI (M) Retd, encouraged the students to join hands with various institutions fighting against drug abuse in the country and take responsibility as partners against this menace. He said that to win, it was imperative that we take this issue head-on as jihad. He said that it was time to fulfill our responsibility to society and work towards its prosperity by defeating all negative forces that threaten it. He said that he would work towards strengthening legislation against the spread of drugs in Pakistan and would ensure that everyone responsible for its spread is taken to task.
Brigadier Mubashir Hassan Kazmi, Director Enforcement, Anti-Narcotics Force while discussing the organization’s role in curbing drugs on campus and outside said that a National Anti-Narcotics Policy has been formulated that has been passed through Parliament, so that this issue can be dealt with strategically. He encouraged the University to establish a Department of Student Affairs so that students could be counselled and supported in this fight. He, however, was of the view that in some cases delinquents would have to be quarantined to protect others. He said that if concrete measures are not taken immediately this could grow into a National Security problem.
Executive Director Higher Education Commission (HEC) Dr. Fateh Muhammad Marri was of the view that for any progress to take place, it was crucial to take into account psychological aspects that led to addiction. He said that the challenge was great, however, every great challenge provides greater opportunity for success.
Vice Chancellor Quaid-i-Azam University, Professor Dr, Muhammad Ali was of the view that teachers would have to play a very strong role to curb drug abuse on campus. He said that a few moments of their time could change some body’s life. He urged the government to deal with encroachment on campus with an iron hand, as this, in his opinion, was a major cause that contributed to unauthorised access to students which allegedly could be the cause of increase in on campus drug abuse.
Dr. Imran Sabir, Principal Researcher of a report published by the Department of Sociology on Drug Abuse in Metropolitan Cities of Pakistan was of the view that peer pressure played a significant role towards increase in drug abuse on campus. He, however, said that family and society cannot be absolved of their responsibility.
The sub-Committee on the Senate Standing Committee on Narcotics Control was especially formed to visit different educational institutions in Pakistan to gauge the enormity of the problem of drug abuse in Pakistan’s youth and through brainstorming of ideas, formulate a strategy to curb it.