●Annual Anti-Drug Action Plan for 2020-21
•Recently, on the occasion of International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking an annual Anti-Drug Action Plan for 2020-21 for 272 districts was launched by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment
•The plan includes awareness generation programmes, identification of drug-dependent population, focus on treatment facilities and capacity-building for service-providers to curb drug abuse and alcoholism
•Drug abuse or substance abuse is the use of illegal drugs (Heroin, Morphine, Opium etc), or the use of prescription drugs for purposes other than those for which they are meant to be used.
•The ministry also announced the launch of the ‘Nasha Mukt Bharat’, or Drug-Free India Campaign which focuses on community outreach programmmes.
•It is estimated that about 850,000 Indians inject drugs, about 460,000 children and 7.7 million Indians require help for opioid (a type of drug e.g. Heroin) dependence
•De-addiction Facilities: These would be set up in the “most affected” 272 districts identified by the Narcotics Control Bureau focussing on building up treatment and de-addiction facilities and giving emphasis on reaching the youth and high risk population.
•The districts mostly belong to Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and the North-East.
•Drop-in-Centres for Addicts: The focus will be on setting up drop-in-centres for addicts and also on peer-led community based outreach programmes for high risk populations – particularly the youth.
•These centres will have provision for screening, assessment and counselling and would provide linkage to treatment and rehabilitation services for drug dependents.
•Integrated Rehabilitation Centre for Addicts (IRCAs): Funded by the Ministry, IRCAS would reach out to communities to help those affected by drug addiction.
•Drug-Free India Campaign: The ministry also announced the launch of the ‘Nasha Mukt Bharat’, or Drug-Free India Campaign which focuses on community outreach programmmes.
•To step-up the battle against the severe challenge posed by drug use and alcoholism, the campaign will focus not just on institutional support but also on community outreach programmes in the districts identified in coordination.
•World Drug Day’, it is celebrated annually on 26th June since 1987.
•The day is also meant to commemorate Lin Zexu’s efforts towards the strategic dismantling of the opium trade in Humen, Guangdong in China right before the First Opium War on the Chinese Mainland.
•Theme 2020: Better Knowledge for Better Care.
•It emphasises the need to improve the understanding of the world drug problem and how better knowledge will foster greater international cooperation for countering its impact on health, governance and security.