The gritty trailer of Udta Punjab is creating ripples in Punjab with its hard-hitting glimpse into the state’s drug problem. Udta Punjab stars Shahid Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, and Diljit Dosanjh in pivotal roles.The film follows the lives of four people in the state – a rock star, a migrant labourer, a doctor and a police officer – exploring how each of them fights drug addiction in different ways.
The ripples have turned into a raging controversy, with the ensuing political slugfest and the ongoing tussle between the makers of Udta Punjab and the Censor Board hogging all the limelight. What has been forgotten in the process is that debates around the film should be focussing on solving drug abuse issues, the main purpose behind making the movie.
The fact is that Punjab has a crippling drug problem and no amount of denial can hide it. According to the Narcotics Control Bureau’s reports, 50% of drug-related cases in the country are from Punjab alone, a sign that the affliction has been allowed to gain a firm footing in the border state.
There is a village, Maqboolpura near Amritsar, that is agonisingly called the ‘Village of Widows’ because practically every household there has lost a member to drugs.
The severity of the problem can somewhat be attributed to Punjab’s close proximity to the Golden Crescent region covering Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran. These three countries are, collectively, the world’s largest producers of opium.
No fight is easy and definitely not the one Punjab is facing. It’s time to end Punjab’s drug epidemic and everybody has to come together to do it. Active cooperation among community leaders and institutions, nonprofit organisations, academics, and policymakers is crucial to the transition to a drug-free Punjab. Realising this, local civil society leaders, victims-survivors, rehabilitated ex-drug addicts and the government are coming together in Punjab to cut the supply chain, treat the addicts and motivate the youth to shun drugs. Raising awareness, as Udta Punjab is doing, is just the first step in this fight.
Many schools and colleges in Punjab are conducting street plays, nukkad nataks, lectures and seminars while several civil activists are coming up with documentaries, anti-pledge programmes and awareness campaigns to spread awareness on the issue.
Glut -The Untold Story Of Punjab, by Smaran Sahu, is a documentary that focuses on the imminent threat of drug mania in Punjab and has been highly appreciated for taking a hard look at the issue.
Ajit Singh is a government school teacher, who saw the desperation and poverty induced by drugs and decided not to look the other way. From his tiny home in Maqboolpura, he runs a school, Citizen Forum Vidya Mandir, for poor children affected by drug abuse. Many of his students are drug orphans or whose parents are drug addicts. Ajit Singh and his humble school are doing the best they can in a village where the entire generation is growing under the haze of drugs
“They call this the locality of widows. I want this to be called the locality of scholars. They should become crusaders and fighters,” says Ajit.
Ajit Singh has created a youth group that is working to spread the anti-drug message in Maqboolpura.
Ubharda Bathinda is a movement against drugs that started in the city of Bathinda – it aims to address the situation on the ground. Started by Swapan Sharma, the Senior Superintendent of Police there,the Ubharda Bhatinda initiative plans to identify chronic drug users with the help of 5-member committees who will conduct surveys in over 303 villages in the district.
Ubharda Bathinda is a great example of a police-community initiative that can effectively increase drug awareness.
The Joshi Foundation, an NGO spearheading a consistent campaign against drug abuse in Punjab, has released an awareness folder to educate the masses about the early signs of drug addiction. Anti-Drug Pledge Programmes titled Nasha Mukt Punjab have also been organised as a part of the Quit & Kick Drug Movement by the Chairman of Punjab Infotech, Sardar Manjit Singh Rai, in partnership with the Joshi Foundation.
The Jyoti Foundation has also held several conferences to seek feedback from de-addiction experts working on the ground level against drug addiction. The 17 Anti-Drug programmes across Punjab have been formulated on this basis.
The drug-abuse problem is now being given due attention by the state government, with the state branch of Red Cross also pitching in with its best efforts. Counselling services by qualified psychiatrists, medical treatment and yoga therapy are given to the addicts to enable them to overcome their addiction. Family counselling, in which the importance of family as a support system is stressed upon, is also provided. Other than private de-addiction clinics and free de-addiction centres run by NGOs, the Punjab government has also opened five rehabilitation centres, with an exclusive one for women opened in Amritsar. There are plans to have one centre in every district.
Having realised that clean up begins at home, the Punjab police have taken a unique step in the right direction too. They have launched a drug de-addiction drive for staff, and a rehabilitation programme for addicted personnel, aiming to purge the force of this menace.
Here is a success story that tells how things are slowly changing in Punjab.
Mehtaab Singh, a 24-year-old postgraduate in computer applications, was the main attraction at a district-level drug awareness rally at Muktsar organised by the District Legal Services Authority( DLSA). An ex-drug addict, Mehtaab talked about his transformation into a short story writer in Punjabi and Urdu.
In 2009, I enrolled for BCA (Bachelor of Computer Applications) in a Moga college.There, I met a few boys from Dalewala village where drugs were available freely. Soon, from beer and liquor, I graduated to to poppy husk and I became addicted to it,” said Mehtaab at one of his seminars. “I started failing in my studies. Out of the 24 subjects in the three-year course, I had to appear for supplementary exams in 22,” says Mehtaab.
Losing a friend in 2012 to drug abuse was a warning sign that Mehtaab heeded. With support from his mother and coach Gurmeet Singh, he fought his desire to return to substance abuse.
He says,”My coach Gurmeet Singh helped me a lot. He diverted all my energy into sports. He used to make me run, cycle and even walk daily. My mother made sure I had enough nutrition in my system to support this gruelling regime. Within eight to nine months of starting my training, I was a much healthier man.”
With his drug habit becoming a thing of the past, Mehtaab focused on his academics once again. He completed his BCA successfully after clearing all supplementary papers. And took up MCA to clear it with 86%.
Mehtaab says, “Earlier I used to be reluctant. But now I show them my photos as welI about how I used to look when I was an addict. Perhaps my sharing can improve someone else’s life.”
He is now looking at a PhD and is also the literary secretary of the Guru Gobind Singh Study circle, an NGO that works for de-addiction and regularly motivates patients.
While it will be interesting to see the kind of impact Udta Punjab has on youth, what’s important right now is to encourage efforts to address the problem. As PM Modi recently put it, “Drugs should be shunned, not addicts.”
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A lover of all things creative and happy, Sanchari is a biotech engineer who fell in love with writing and decided to make it her profession. She is also a die-hard foodie, a pet-crazy human, a passionate history buff and an ardent lover of books. When she is not busy at The Better India, she can usually be found reading, laughing at silly cat videos and binge-watching TV seasons.
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Drug abuse involves compulsive and excessive intake of drugs over a period of time. Repeated use of drugs results in developing addiction that has harmful repercussions. It is a problem that directly impacts the structure and functioning of the brain causing grave damage to it. Drug abuse, a term used for obsessive and excessive use of drugs, is a common problem these days. Regular use of drugs is self damaging. It leads to addiction and causes behavioural changes. Drug abuse particularly impacts the brain and can also lead to other health issues such as kidney failure and heart problem. Here are essays of varying lengths to help you with the topic in your exam.
Essay on Drug Abuse
Drug Abuse Essay 1 (200 words)
Drug abuse is the repeated and excessive use of drugs. It impacts a person’s mental as well as physical health negatively causing a major damage to the brain. Drug abuse hampers a person’s power to practise self-control and interferes with their ability to resist the urge to take drugs. Drugs are initially taken out of choice, however, it becomes hard to resist them sooner than you realise. It is difficult to recover from this problem and even those who do stand a high risk of developing it again.
People usually take to drug abuse in order to curb the stress caused due to the following:
- Family Issues
- Pressure at Work
- Growing Competition in Schools and Colleges
- Relationship Problems
- Financial Issues
- Feeling of Emptiness
Besides, it can also be a genetic problem. Whatever be the reason, it is essential to understand that drug abuse only aggravates the problems rather than solving them. It is thus wise to stay away from it. Those who have already fallen prey to this problem can seek expert guidance to overcome it. Proper medication, support from loved ones and strong will power can take one out of the dark world of drug abuse. The treatment for drug abuse is extended over a long period so as to ensure that the problem does not relapse.
Drug Abuse Essay 2 (300 words)
Drug abuse refers to obsessive and excessive use of drugs. It impacts a person’s mental as well as physical health mainly causing damage to the brain. Drugs are initially taken by choice owing to different reasons. However, gradually it becomes difficult to resist them. There are different reasons why people take the road to drugs. Here is a look at these and also the ways to curb this problem.
Reasons for Drug Abuse
- Family/Relationship Problems
Many people have problems in their family. For them, drug abuse seems to be an easy escape from the stress caused due to those problems. Youngsters, particularly try to tackle their relationship problems by way of drug abuse.
- Work Pressure
Pressure at work place and competition at the school and college level is another major cause of drug abuse.
It is often seen that a person’s genes also play a significant role in him/ her turning addict. The problem usually, not necessarily, runs in the family.
The feeling of loneliness or emptiness can also force a person to turn to drugs.
Medication for Drug Abuse
Different types of medications are given to people suffering from different stages of drug abuse. Here is a look at these:
- Staying in Treatment
The patient’s brain needs to be trained to adapt to the absence of drugs. This treatment helps the patients control their craving for drugs.
- Withdrawal Treatment
People who stop using drugs can experience symptoms such as stress, anxiety, mood swings, etc. They are prescribed medications to overcome these symptoms.
- Prevent Relapse
There are many factors that can trigger a relapse. Medications are being developed to control these triggers.
Drug Abuse is a common problem these days. Though hard to resist, the usage of drugs can be controlled with proper medication and guidance.
Drug Abuse Essay 3 (400 words)
Drug abuse is a chronic disease. Those who abuse drugs are unable to resist them despite being fully aware about their harmful consequences. Regular intake of drugs can damage the brain adversely and can also lead to various other health problems. Brain changes caused due to heavy intake of drugs can be persistent. Drug addiction is thus known to be a relapsing problem. Here is a look at the various causes of drug abuse and also the ways to overcome this problem:
Factors Causing Drug Abuse
The factors causing drug abuse have mainly been classified in three categories. Here is a look at each of these in detail:
A person’s environment includes various factors such as his social status, family, friends, professional life, etc. Problems in the family, bad company, competition at work and lack of proper guidance and support from parents or teachers can often lead to drug abuse.
Drug abuse can also be a genetic problem. A child stands a high chance of falling prey to drug abuse if either of his parents has been under the influence of the same. Certain mental disorders can also cause a person to turn towards drugs.
Though drug addiction can develop at any age however those who begin taking drugs at an early age have a high chance of getting addicted. This is because those areas in their brain that are responsible for self-control, judgement and decision making are still in their development stage. This is the reason why teenagers are more prone to drug abuse.
Ways to Cure Drug Abuse
Though difficult, there are ways to cure the problem of drug abuse. Here is how:
It is suggested to visit a doctor and seek proper medication to overcome this problem. Most of those who are suffering from this grave problem are recommended to join a rehabilitation centre to control it.
The damage caused due to drug abuse must be replenished in order to become physically and mentally fit and this can only be done by having a healthy diet. It is also suggested to exercise regularly in order to keep stress at bay.
Drug abuse, mainly caused in an attempt to overcome emotional upheaval in one’s life, can be self damaging. It is suggested to stick to a healthy lifestyle and steer clear of unhealthy practices such as dependence on drugs or alcohol to stay fit and active.
Drug Abuse Essay 4 (500 words)
Drug abuse is excessive, compulsive and repeated use of drugs. It is a chronic disease that can damage a person’s physical as well as mental health beyond repair. Initially, a person takes drugs by choice. However, after some time it becomes almost impossible for him/ her to resist them. Drug addiction is difficult to control and is often referred to as a relapsing disease. It mainly impacts the brain.
Why does this problem occur?
Different people get addicted to drugs owing to different reasons. Here is a look at some of the main reasons that lead to this problem:
Many people take to drugs to overcome the feeling of loneliness. Many a times, people feel that they have no one to share their joys and sorrows with and they eventually take to drugs in order to get rid of this feeling.
Growing competition in schools, colleges and at work leads to pressure which is often difficult to handle. Many people turn to drugs in order to handle this pressure.
- Relationship Problems
This is also a common reason for drug abuse. Youngsters often take to drugs in order to overcome the emotional upheaval caused due to failed relationships.
Many people, mostly teenagers are just curious to find out how drugs taste as well as their after effects. Little do they know that this experimenting can lead to addiction before they would even realise.
Drug abuse is often hereditary. If any of the parents is addicted to drugs, the child has a high risk of incurring the problem.
How to curb this problem?
While it is difficult to get out of the dark world of drug abuse and it is highly likely for the problem to relapse, there are certain things that can help those trying to get rid of this problem. These are discussed below in detail:
- Expert Consultation
It is suggested to consult a doctor or better still join a rehabilitation centre in order to get rid of drug abuse. As easy as it is to fall prey to this problem, it is equally difficult to come out of it. The step by step approach followed at the rehabilitation centres is an effective way to curb this issue.
- Eat Healthy
Your mental as well as physical health deteriorates due to heavy intake of drugs. In order to replenish the lost nutrients, it is suggested to have a healthy diet.
Physical activities such as jogging, dancing, swimming, yoga, etc promote the growth of endorphins also known as the happy hormones. It is suggested to indulge in such activities to get rid of drug addiction as reducing the drug dosage can increase the stress level.
Drug Abuse is a grave problem. Especially common among the youth these days, it can be damaging for those who are addicted as well as the ones related to them. The sensitivity of the issue must be recognized and one must not start this practice in any case. Remember, there are better ways to handle problems such as loneliness, fear, anxiety and heart break.
Drug Abuse Essay 5 (600 words)
Drug abuse, the compulsive and excessive use of drugs, particularly impacts a person’s brain. It causes brain changes that make it difficult for a person to practice self-control and interfere with their power to defy the urge to take drugs. The changes in the functioning of the brain are inexorable and this is the reason why it often relapses. Even those who recover stand a high risk of returning to drugs even after years of recovery. However, this does not mean that the treatment is not effective enough. One must ensure that the treatment is not stopped. It is an ongoing process though the doctors alter the medication from time to time on the basis of the response received from the patients.
What causes Drug Addiction?
Different people fall prey to this self-damaging habit due to different reasons. Some of the key reasons for drug addiction are shared below:
- Feeling of Emptiness
Feeling of emptiness can be the worst feeling and is often difficult to handle. To get rid of these feelings, many people take the road to drugs. They feel that drugs will help them fill the void.
- Work Pressure
Many students begin taking drugs to overcome the study related stress. Similarly, there is so much pressure in the corporate offices these days that people are unable to cope up with it. They often turn towards drugs to deal with the stress and anxiety caused at work.
- Family/ Relationship problems
Many people also tend to begin taking drugs to overcome stress caused due to family issues or relationship problems and eventually become addicted to the same.
Teenagers often try drugs just for experimenting and get addicted to them before they even realise. Teenagers are more prone to get addicted to them.
Drug addiction can even be genetic. It is often seen that this problem runs in the families. So, there is a high risk of children getting addicted if their parents abuse drugs.
- Drugs Available on Prescription
Most drugs prescribed by the doctors are as addictive as the street drugs. Many people mistake them as safe and repeated use of these leads to addiction.
Measures to Overcome Drug Addiction
Overcoming drug addiction can be difficult. However, it is not impossible. With the help of medication, expert guidance and support from family and friends, one can overcome this problem. Discussed below are some measures to help you overcome drug abuse.
- Consult Doctor
It takes much more than a strong will power when it comes to getting rid of drug addiction. If you have taken the plunge to get out of the dark world of drugs then it is suggested to consult a doctor as soon as possible.
Reducing drug dosage may result in increased level of stress. You can overcome this to a large extent by indulging in physical activities such as jogging, cycling, swimming, dancing and yoga among others.
- Eat Healthy
Your physical health especially brain deteriorates because of regular intake of drugs. It is thus advised to have food that contains all the essential nutrients.
- Talk to Close Ones
Instead of keeping your feelings to yourself, it is suggested to vent them out. Talk to your family and friends about your issues. This is a good way to de-stress rather than relying on drugs.
Drug abuse is a growing problem, especially among the youths. There are many reasons that lead to this problem and the impact it has is extremely damaging. It is essential to spread awareness about the negative repercussions of drugs to discourage their use. Those gripped by this problem must consult a doctor and seek help from those close to them to come out of hellish world of drug abuse.
Speech on Drug Abuse