Addicts steal historic books from Jawzjan library
SHIBERGHAN (Pajhwok): Drug addicts in Shiberghan city, the capital of northern Jawzjan province, have stolen dozens of historic and important books from the public library for finding money to purchase drugs, an official said on Monday.
“Tens of drug addicts living in Bukhdi park of the city steal anything they find access to, even books from the public library,” said Azimullah Rahmanyar, the provincial Information and Culture director.
He told Pajhwok Afghan News drug addicts had recently stolen 85 historic and important books from the library.
The books stolen included manuscripts of old painting, books related to Tila Tapa (Gold Hill) of Shiberghan city, old and new poems, he added.
He went on to say that the addicts had even broken capboards and chairs stealing their parts.
Addicts spending days and nights at Bukhdi park were involved in the theft, he said.
He said the issue had been shared with security organs and metal fences around the public library tightened to avoid such cases in future.
The official said the public library contained more than 5,000 different books and it remained open to public all the day.
The library was once destroyed by the Taliban in 1997, but it was revived during former president Hamid Karzai government.
Abdur Rashid, a books fan, said stealing books from the public library should be prevented at all costs.
He said drug addicts possibly sold these books at very cheap price. Rashid asked relevant officials to protect the library and find the stolen books and bring them back to the library.
A drug addict, Jummaddin, said no one paid attention to them whenever they were taken to hospital for treatment or for work. He said they had no option but to commit such actions.
“Our families have abandoned us, we have to steal books or anything to sell them and buy food and drugs for ourselves,” he said.
Abdul Ghafar Khushiwal, director of the 50-bed hospital treating addicts, said there were 1,500 addicts in the province last year.
A survey to find the exact number of addicts could not be launched this year, but their number might be increased by two or three times, he said.
He added they planned to launch a survey in the near future to know the exact number of drug addicts.
Hundreds of people have been treated in the hospital working under the Ministry of Public Health framework, he said.
Currently 60 drug addicts, 28 of them women, are under treatment at the hospital for 40 days, he said.
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