Minister approves formation of special anti-narcotics task force


LAHORE: Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid Monday chaired a high-level meeting during which the constitution of a special anti-narcotics task force in the wake of growing menace of drug addiction in the society was approved.

The meeting also reviewed the recommendations prepared by a special committee on narcotics control.

“Rehabilitation of drug addicts is as necessary as the eradication of narcotics. The growing trend of drug addiction has become cancer for the society,” Rashid said on the occasion.

The minister noted that a number of government departments were working to eliminate drugs, however, consolidated efforts were not being made so far. “A coordinated mechanism to root out narcotics and rehabilitation of addicted persons is the need of the hour.”

She warned that the use of drugs in educational institutions would not be tolerated. “I would personally speak to the social welfare, excise & anti-narcotics, school education and higher education ministers to devise a solid policy in this regard,” she added.

The minister also summoned a meeting on January 16 and sought from all departments concerned briefing on their respective strategies for the eradication of drugs.

“As far as the Health Department is concerned, we are going to arrange special beds for the treatment of drug addicts,” Rashid said.

“Rooting out the menace of narcotics is the symbol of a healthy society and the government will provide all possible resources to accomplish the challenges.”

She also said that it was impossible to achieve certain targets without political ownership.