26 June 2019
Bhubaneswar: The International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking 2019 was observed in the city today at the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) with the support of Excise Department, Government of Odisha.
More than 500 students and youth leaders participated in the event, addressed by Social Security and Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (SSEPD) Minister Ashok Chandra Panda and Bhubaneswar MLA (Central) Ananta Narayan Jena. Commissioner-Cum-Secretary Excise Department Sushil Kumar Lohani also spoke on the occasion.
The participants also organised a rally which started from BMC office premises and continued up to Master Canteen Square, via Kalpana and Rajmahal Squares. The participants included NCC cadets, cadets from Bharat Scouts and Guides Bhubaneswar, NSS volunteers, youth leaders of Biju Yuba Bahini and students from BJB Autonomous College.
Speaking on the occasion the Minister said "It is a great challenge for all of us in the society and especially the young people, who are growing up in a difficult time. We all should be vigilant and keep a watch on the society to stop drug use and illicit trafficking of drugs.’’
Bhubaneswar MLA (Central) and former BMC Mayor said, "This movement was there in the past and will continue in the future so that we can rescue people from the clutches of drugs and their addictive effects as they would destroy the social system. All members of the society should be alert to keep a watch on the drug users.’’
Chief Speaker of the occasion Commissioner-Cum-Secretary Excise Department Sushil Kumar Lohani said, "This day is observed globally on June 26th every year to make all in our society accountable and aware about the ill effects of the addictive substances as once someone becomes a prey, he/she remains in its control throughout. In order to break ourselves from the addictive tentacles of drugs we need to be aware and make others aware.’’
The theme of the initiative for the current year is "Health for justice, justice for health." The United Nations has emphasised that tackling drug abuse leads directly to both health and justice, which are two vital parameters of our urban and rural societies.
This international day is promoted by the Commission of Narcotic Drugs, one of the commissions of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). In 2009, member states of this Commission adopted the "Political Declaration and Plan of Action on International Cooperation towards an Integrated and Balanced Strategy to Counter the World Drug Problem," which details goals and targets to control illicit trafficking of drugs.
Additionally, in March 2019, these member states signed a Ministerial Declaration to reaffirm their commitment to this cause and their sustained efforts to tackle it.