Sun, 03 Dec 2023

New Delhi [India], September 21 (ANI): The Indian government continues its commitment to tackling the issue of substance use disorder in the country, recognizing the significant social and health implications it carries.

To address this challenge, the Department of Social Justice and Empowerment is set to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Gayatri Parivar, aimed at spreading awareness about the ill effects of substance abuse, particularly among the youth.

Substance addiction not only impacts an individual's health but also disrupts families and society as a whole. The government recognizes the need to address substance use and dependence as a psycho-social-medical problem, read the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment press release.

The first comprehensive national survey on the extent and pattern of substance use in India revealed that alcohol is the most commonly consumed psychoactive substance, followed by cannabis and opioids.

To combat the demand for drugs, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment (MoSJE) has been implementing the National Action Plan for Drug Demand Reduction (NAPDDR), read the press release.

This umbrella scheme provides financial assistance to state governments and union territory administrations for various initiatives, including preventive education and awareness generation, capacity building, skill development, vocational training, and livelihood support for ex-drug addicts.

In addition to NAPDDR, the government has launched the ambitious Nasha Mukt Bharat Abhiyaan (NMBA) to create awareness about the harmful effects of substance abuse, with a specific focus on educational institutions and communities, read the press release.

NMBA has reached over 10.61 crore people and trained 8,000 master volunteers to lead activities in identified districts. More than 3.36 crore youth have actively participated in NMBA's initiatives, and around 4,000 youth clubs and volunteers have joined the campaign, read the press release.

NMBA has effectively utilized technology and social media to spread its message online, with the development of an Android-based mobile application to capture real-time data of on-ground activities.

As part of a special initiative, NMBA is also partnering with religious and spiritual organizations to amplify its impact, read the release.

The signing of the MoU between the Department of Social Justice and Empowerment and Gayatri Parivar is a significant step in furthering the goals of NMBA.

The ceremony will take place on September 22, at the Dr Ambedkar International Centre in New Delhi, in the presence of Union Minister Dr Virendra Kumar and senior officials from both organizations. (ANI)

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