26th Jun 2017 10:06:PM Editorials
Eastern Sentinel Arunachal News

When sun goes down, one would find lot many youngsters swarming the street-corners, alleys, construction sites or even benches in the parks spending hours together indulging drinking binge, sniffing or smoking abusive substances. This has emerged as one of the biggest challenges. Road accidents and crimes involving youths especially loitering late night is on the rise and the capital complex unfortunately has witnessed many of them in the recent weeks.

If one thinks that this phenomenon is confined to Itanagar or Naharlagun. Deplorable state of affair has come to such a passé that one is dumbfounded to see teenage boys and girls in school-uniforms, riding around in bike with beer bottles and lit-up cigarette in their hands.

Health hazard is definitely a major concern; the productive populations in the society are turning to be deadwoods much ahead of time. Social cost is sharply rising; impact assessment ought to be done for preventive and corrective measures before it’s too late.

In India, an NGO survey revealed that 63.6% of patients coming in for treatment were introduced to drugs at a young age below 15 years. According to another report, 13.1% of the people involved in drug and substance abuse in India, are below 20 years.

Each of the learned and educated citizens ought to take on the perpetrators of anti-social elements. The public, administrators and people in position of power must act in unison. Administrators can do a lot if they have the right intent. Why can’t administrators shut the wine-shops and bars from serving alcohol during school hours between 7 am till 4 pm across the towns, with imprisonments to the defaulters? Even administrators must shut down all wine-shops within 1 km radii of schools. 


Few years back, we have had more than 4000 registered NGOs in the state and now number must have gone up but till date we don’t have single organizations working on rehabilitations of juveniles, even under JJ Act there’s no functional reform centre in the state.  Government should incentivize NGOs to establish rehabilitation and reform centres. Affirmative action for the welfares of the youths must be high on government agenda- that’s a bounden duty. 

--Indigenous Arunachalee society has had a long association and accessibility with intoxicants, be it in the form of local wine, opium etc. In olden days they were grown for personal consumption but presently most cultivators who are women carry the legacy due to the commercial perks and to sustain families. In this context, alternate livelihood generation must be a prime focus to curb the trend rather than just issuing directives and destroying standing fields. Case in point is the once opium producer, Anjaw district which has turn into a producer of large cardamom, and with a financial turnover of nearly 12 crore during the financial year 2010-11, many locals are giving up opium and turning to growing this much-sought after spice.

Though it is difficult to do away with traditions at a go but through more awareness raising programmes people must be dislodged from such harmful practices. But above all the need of the hour is for understanding the emotional requirements of the youngsters incorporating guidance and counselling. Steps must be taken not only to address drug-users and vulnerable targets but equal emphasis must be given for the proper rehabilitation of de-addicts so that they can make a comeback to mainstream society and lead fulfilling lives.


Kenter Joya Riba

(Managing Editor)
      She is a graduate in Science with post graduation in Sociology from University of Pune. She has been in the media industry for nearly a decade. Before turning to print business, she has been associated with radio and television.
Email: kenterjoyaz@easternsentinel.in / editoreasternsentinel@gmail.com
Phone: 0360-2212313

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