Strategy 2019-23 being formulated to effectively implement National Anti-Narcotics Policy

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ISLAMABAD, Mar 26 (APP): Ministry of Narcotics Control is in process of formulating national action strategy (2019-2023) to effectively implement Anti-Narcotics Policy 2019.

The preparation of Strategy is almost at final stages under which short term, midterm and long term initiative would be proposed so as to achieve better results.

Secretary Narcotics Control, Capt (Retd) Arif Nawaz Khan said this while briefing Senate Standing Committee on Narcotics Control which met here with Senator Sardar

Muhammad Shafiq Tareen in chair here on Tuesday.

The meeting was also attended by Senators including Brig (Retd) John Kenneth Williams, Lt. Gen (Retd) Abdul Qayyum, Kamran Michael, Dr. Sikandar Mandhro, Saleem Zia, Haji Momin Khan Afridi, Secretary Ministry Narcotics Control and officers of Ministry of Narcotics Control, Anti Narcotics Force (ANF), Higher Education Commission (HEC) and Federal Directorate of Education Islamabad.

The Secretary said the Policy provides for stronger enforcement measures, increased international cooperation, mechanism and effective drug demand reduction strategies.

He said Anti-Narcotics Policy 2019 is a reiteration of present government’s commitment and resolve to uplift status of people by providing them protection against social evils such as illicit drugs to make a healthy society which is well prepared to embrace challenges of modern world.

Members of the parliamentary Body raised different queries and said unless effective implementation of the policy is not ensured the desired results cannot be achieved.

They appreciated the Ministry and other relevant departments for making a good document in shape of new policy but questioned its execution.

Secretary Arif Nawaz further informed the Committee that narcotics have been a major global concern and added that the Ministry under its policy objective ‘Drug Demand Reduction’ has been holding Awareness Activities Against Drugs including Seminar, Awareness Sessions, Walks etc across the country.

The purpose behind these activities was to raise awareness amongst the masses against hazards of drugs; and to sensitize them, especially the youth about its devastating nature.

The focus of such activities is youth, the segment of our society that forms more than 60% of total population.

Senator Muhammad Shafiq Tareen constituted a three-member sub-committee which would visit different universities and conduct interaction with faculty members as well as students as part of campaign to aware them about hazards of drugs.

It was revealed that main issue confronted by ANF was lack of human resource whose current strength is about 2800.

Senator Lt. Gen (R) Abdul Qayyum was of the view that strength of the Department cannot be compromised, since it has to deal with those who are destroying the future of Pakistan.

He stressed the need to take all necessary measures to beef up the Force. It was stressed that strength of rehabilitation centers be increased. The Committee was informed that new rehabilitation centres would be established to provide free of cost treatment to drug addicts and bring them back to normal life.

The representatives of HEC and FDE also briefed the Committee about their initiatives to aware the students about hazards of drugs.

VNS Islamabad