Shopian Administration to act tough against Poppy/ Bhang cultivation

Shopian: The District Magistrate (DM) Shopian, Sachin Kumar Vaishya held detailed deliberations with sub-divisional administration during his visit to Zainapora to finalise road map for addressing issue of bhang/poppy cultivation in the area and effectively tackle the menace of trafficking, use of narcotics and other psychotropic substances.

Various areas under Zainapora Subdivision are considered as hotbeds for cultivation of bhang/poppy from where these psychotropic substances are smuggled throughout the district and outside for use by the drug addicts.

It was decided in the meeting that the teams of Revenue, Police and Excise Departments shall act in coordination to destroy bhang/poppy crops and take strict action under law against the cultivators including registering of FIRs. The habitual drug traffickers shall be booked under Public Safety Act and SDPO Zainpora was directed to prepare dossiers for PSA in all such cases.

It was given out that a helpline number shall be issued in public domain for reporting instances of poppy/bhang cultivation, drug trafficking and drug abuse. The administration shall ensure handholding of youth who are caught in menace of drug abuse by shifting them to Rehabilitation Centre within and outside district so that they can again become a part of strengthened society and contribute in it constructively.

The officials of Agriculture and Horticulture departments shall provide alternate suitable crops for bringing under cultivation the lands where poppy/bhang is cultivated whereas the youth of the areas shall be provided livelihood avenues under various Self Employment Schemes of the Govt. after proper skill profiling.

The meeting decided that a massive awareness campaign shall be initiated to educate the youth about ills of drug abuse through hoardings, cycle/bike rallies, street plays, announcements through mosques, Friday sermons on the theme of drug abuse and holding of sports festivals.

The religious leaders, sports icon, youth icon, civil society members, elected representatives and media persons shall be roped in to make this campaign result oriented.

The meeting was attended by SDM Zainapora Mushtaq Ahmad lone, SDPO Zainapora Riaz Ahmad, Tehsildar Zainapora, Tehsildar ImamSahib and SHO Zainapora besides other officers of the Sub Divisional Administration.