Illiteracy, joblessness boost number of drug addicts
QALAT (PAJHWOK): The number of drug addicts, mostly youths, has been on the rise in southern Zabul province provincial, officials and residents said on Tuesday.
Public Health Director Dr. Lal Muhammad Tokhi told Pajhwok Afghan News: “We don’t have any rehabilitation facility and have shared the problem with the Ministry of Public Health.”
But the ministry had paid no heed to the request so far, lamented the official, who did not give an exact figure, but said the numbers of addicts was increased with each passing day.
He added the establishment of a rehabilitation centre in Zabul was important. If the ministry did not set aside funds for the project, the situation in Zabul would worsen, he warned.
Provincial government media center head Ahmad Wali Sarhadi said the addicts often broke into houses to steal money and valuables. He also complained about the non-existence of a rehab facility in Zabul.
A teacher at the Shikmati High School in Qalat, Ismatullah, believed most of youth had become drug addicts due to joblessness and illiteracy. “The authorities must jerk into action to deal with the challenge.”
Provincial police chief Brig. Gen. Ghulam Sakhi Rogh Lewanai said they had seized hundreds of kilograms of narcotics and several smugglers last year. The detainees were turned over to judicial organs.
One religion scholars, meanwhile, declared the use of drugs as an un-Islamic act and asked the government and people to curb addiction. Maulvi Abdul Wali regretted the violation of the Islamic tenet in this regard.
He also linked the unwholesome practice, which gave birth to a variety of social problems, to joblessness and illiteracy.
Lal Muhammad, a resident of the Ghulam Rabat area of Shah Joi district, said junkie could be seen in the provincial capital and almost all towns.
Some youths of his village, who had been to Iran for jobs, returned with the addiction problem. With time, some of their friends and relatives also sought refuge into addition. The residents blamed police for using drugs
Provincial council members, who voiced concern at the existing situation, claimed women had also resorted to taking narcotics. The deputy head of the provincial council, Fawzia Younusi Kakar, said the addicts caused problems for residents.
She urged the government, tribal elders and scholars to join hands for running an awareness campaign and providing treatment facilities for addicts.
A young resident of Qalat, Hamidullah, said most of youths could not find job after completing higher studies. He asked the government to create working opportunities for them.
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