Drugs in Punjab: 80% of Punjabi youth takes drugs. The drug problem came to notice only few years ago. The spark was present since past many years, but the fire spread only two or three years ago and it is destroying many houses in Punjab. According to our survey, 78% people say that users make their first contact with drugs through friends. The most popular Nashay among students are:
Alcohol – reported by 38%
Smack – reported by 37%
Cigarettes – reported by 25%
As you see in the above survey result, smack (powder form of heroin) is trying to take number 1 spot among the Punjabi youth. Drugs are easily available to anyone in Punjab. Parents never accept the truth regarding their kids’ addiction to drugs. They think that they will loose their social respect in society and will do everything to hide the true facts.
Drug Factors promoting Drug Abuse
Myths related to sexual potency,
Curiosity about drugs,
Punitive attitude of others and
Lack of support during periods of stress
The way Rehab Clinics works in Punjab
There is a shortage of dedicated Rehab clinics in Amritsar district. During our three months work, we found three major Drug De-Addiction centers. Here are few details about them:
1) Navjeevan Rehab Clinic - Situated at the back side of Guru Nanak Dev University on Ram Tirath Road. A village house converted into rehab-center runs the de-addiction program for 6 months and they charge approx. Rs 4500/month/patient. They have counselor visiting the rehab clinic from Delhi for 3 days a week. In less then 3000 sq feet two storey building, they house more than 50 addicts and never allow visitors to see the patients. They have big dogs, guards to prevent their patients from running away. They have pretty strict rules for the addicts who fail to comply to their system. (location – Rural Area)
2) Cheharta Nasha Shudao Kendar – This rehab clinic gives medicine to the addicts and runs program for only 5 days (Monday to Friday) and they release all addicts by the end of the week. Though started by Akaal Purakh Ki Fauj with support of SGPC and situated right next to Cheharta Gurdwara Sahib, they charge Rs 3500 per patient for only 5 days. (location – Rural Area)
3) On RajaSansi Road – You can spot another De-addiction center on the road leading to Amritsar’s “Raja Sansi International Airport”. They run the center for only 4 days (Monday to Thursday) and charge Rs 6500 per patient. They told us that they do some Chip Implant method on addicts. We never heard about this chip method and we will do research on the positive and negative effects of this method.
Drug De-addiction/Rehab clinics in Punjab are not being open to help the addicts but another way to do business. We couldn’t find any clinic which offers good long term plan for the addicts and works according to the Gurmat priniciples. We found Navjeevan Rehab center as the most effective clinic which offers counseling and raising the self-esteem of the addicts. But there are few down points according to Sikh rehat; They shave off everything on addicts face (including Eyebrows) as the punishment to those who try to run away from the clinic.
Drug problem in Punjab can be controlled only if we run the de-addiction centre according to sikhi rehat, including maintaining the Strict Amrit Vela program. Sikhi lifestyle can give these addicts a new life, making them feel that drugs are BIG NO in their religion. We need to lift the spirits of the addicts and boost their self esteem by giving them good counseling and gurmat education.
Conclusion of our Project II : Drug problem in Punjab is huge. 66% of 6th to 7th graders are using Jarda (Tobacco widely used by Bhaias). The drug problem in Punjab can be controlled easily if we keep tab on Chemist shops in Villages and run a low cost successful rehab clinic in Punjab on the basis of counseling and raising self esteem.
Common Drugs in Punjab and their prices (both Legal and Illegal Drugs)
Most of the following ways are used by the youth of villages. Chemist shops in almost every village in Punjab sell capsules without any prescription to anyone to raise their sale. Youth misuse the medicines to get high. City youth are famous in using Smack and other high profile (expensive) drugs. Common drugs in effect are Alcohol, smack, tobacco, opium, charas, ganja, mandrax, heroin, cough syrups, sleeping pills and other prescription drugs selling without prescriptions in Punjab. The recipe of the witches’ brew has many more items. The drugs are easily obtainable, even kids can buy them if they have the money. One could buy these drugs at the numerous liquor vends, chemist shops, small stalls selling cigarettes and pan among other drugs and even the grocery shops in the villages.
Drug Name & their Price
1 Corex Rs 53 per bottle
2 Nitrazepam (10mg) Rs 10 per tablet
3 Proxyvon Rs 25 per 8 capsules
4 Spasmo Proxyvon Rs 25 per 10 capsules
5 Sudimal Rs 10 per 10 tablets
6 Microtel Rs 25 per 100 tablets
7 Lomotil Rs 5 per 10 tablets
8 Parvon Rs 25 per 10 tablets
9 White Correction Fluid Rs 25 per tube
10 Boot Polish Rs 10 per pack
11 Tobacco Packet Rs 2 per pack
12 Subimol Rs 12 per 10 tablets
13 Norphin Injection Rs 10 per injection
14 Brown Sugar (Smack) Rs 300 per gram
15 Opium Rs 300 to Rs 500 per 10 gm
16 Heroin (Smack is the powder form of heroin – only in Asia) Rs 1000 per gm
17 Cocaine Rs 1000+ per gm
18 White Sugar (Charas) Rs 1000+ per gm
19 Bhukey (Marijuana) Rs 300 to Rs 500 per kg
20 Iodex ointment Rs 20 per bottle
Some Weird ways that Punjabi youth are using to get high
Petrol – They dip a piece of cotton wool in petrol and keep it under their nose and inhale the air and they get high by doing that.
Lizard – They kill and burn the lizard and eat it to get high.
Boot Polish – They rub the boot polish onto the back of their neck and turn it towards the sun and they high feeling by doing that.
Petrol Pipes – They eat the dirt deposited on the leaking petrol pipe of vehicles and petrol pumps.
Bhang in Cigarette – They rub the Bhang leaf in oily hands until it turns into a small ball of dirt and they put that small ball into the cigarette and smoke it. This gives them more thrill/high than normal cigarettes.
Iodex – They use Iodex in place of Jam on a toast and with that taste they get high. Iodex is a pain relief balm.
Correction Fluid – A simple stationary item which is used to correct writing or typing errors on papers. They cut open it and drink the whole fluid to get high.
Profiles of Drug Users (Random Users)
Data collected from random 48 users of areas around Amritsar City (approx. 6 villages). Most of the drug users are in the age group of 20 to 30 years old. From the last three years the drug use has seen a steep rise. Everybody has one thing in common which is “Unemployment”. They usually inherit a good share of land ranging from 5 Kilas up to 25 kilas or belong to rich families. All of them are heroin (Smack) users.
Liquor Problem in Punjab (Vendors)
Within the radius of 7 km’s, we counted nearly 400 liquor vendors in Amritsar city. We asked one of our minor (under 13) volunteer to go and buy the liquor and see if they ask for his identity, which none of the liquor vends we tested asked for. We also heard that Amritsar city consumes more than Rs 1 crore (approx. $200,000) worth of liquor a day. One good fact is that within the wall boundary of old Amritsar, there is no Liquor stores but as soon as you come out of the walled city of Amritsar (Hall Gate, Sultanwind Gate, Lahore Gate, Sheranwala Gate etcc), you will find dozens of liquor stores.
Indian law prohibits the advertisements of liquors but you still will see the companies mending their way to get their advertising message across. You will see the HUGE posters of these liquor companies in and around Punjab. They give the advertisement of their product in the garb of items like CD rack, Golf Accessories, Water Soda and even Tourism. Please see the picture of the boards to get the proper idea of this huge problem in Punjab.