he trend of smoking is on an ever increasing curve in Kashmir valley. Every year thousands die due to smoking-related causes. The lone Chest and pulmonary diseases hospital in Dalgate witness long queues of patients all wheezing, coughing and panting. While the serpentine queues of septuagenarians and octogenarians at the lone pulmonary diseases hospital is an indicator of a prolonged use of tobacco the trend is catching up with Kashmir’s youth also. Groups of students donned in school uniforms can be seen smoking cigarettes in the heart of the city flaunting the expensive brand of cigarettes in their hands.
In calibrated whispers we have now begun seeing the elephant in the room. Yes, the smoking menace has entered our schools and it is just not plain filtered cigarettes we are talking about. We find gaggle of students crouched low on the Abi Guzar Bund smoking what appears to be weed joints right under the nose of the authorities. The situation is worse in the playgrounds in Srinagar. The youths, it appears, are one of the primary consumers of the marijuana distributors operating out of Srinagar. Located in various areas of Srinagar these youths fetch weed from these shady people like they fetch Ice-cream from the different ice-cream parlors of the city.
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What is the establishment doing about it? Is it not their one of their primary duty to check the menace of drug abuse in colleges of Kashmir valley? It has been observed worldwide that how a teenager is most likely to consume drugs like Marijuana all his life if he starts in his/her teen years. The scenario is worst in some parts of the old city where some blame it on the alienation and massive unemployment.
Whatever be the case. Taking resort to drugs can never be an option. The authorities need to catch hold of these shady distributors of weed in the city. Scores of counseling sessions need to be held for starters (someone who is not a hardcore addict yet). For hardcore addicts, proper rehabilitation centre should be established so that they are brought back to the world of realty from the fantasy dream of theirs.