Ludhiana locals vent ire against Badals for failing to end drug menace

Ludhiana (Punjab) [India], Jan. 30 : Extremely upset with the fact that the youth of Punjab are addicted to drugs like smack and cocaine, the locals in Ludhiana lashed out at the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) government for making false assurances and not coming up with firm steps to tackle this menace.

"The government has nothing to say about this drug menace. They just keep giving assurance but till now no firm steps have been taken to overcome this," said a local.

Another local said drug is mainly an issue among the villagers and the middleclass. "It is the people of Akali Dal who sell drugs here. These people including Majithia are responsible for the drug menace in the state," said a resident. Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi and Prime Minister Narendra Modi traded barbs last Friday over drug abuse in Punjab, setting the tone for a potentially fiery campaign over the divisive issue ahead of next month's assembly polls in the state.

Rahul said the Congress government, if elected to power, will enact a law that would "make everyone shiver at the first thought of drugs".

"Four years back, I said that 70 per cent youth are affected by drugs. Badals made fun of me. Now whole Punjab is saying what I had said," Rahul claimed. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has promised to root out drugs in a month if his Aam Aadmi Party is voted to power in Punjab.

The leaders of the Akali Dal, which governs the state currently in alliance with the BJP, have mostly responded with denial.

Currently, nearly 75 percent of Punjab's youth is addicted to heroin, smack, cocaine and other drugs. Among these 75, 30 percent are HIV positive. According to Narcotics Control Bureau's reports, 50 percent of drug-related cases of the country are from Punjab alone.

Source: ANI