TODAY -

No time for verbal spat over drug issue
- The People's Chronicle Editorial :: January 24, 2023 -



COMING at a time when the government and its agencies are cataloguing their daily achievements of destroying so and so hectares of clandestine poppy cultivations in the hill areas, the recent arrest of five police commando personnel attached to the Commando Unit of Kakching police with a huge consignment of heroin and WY drugs worth around Rs 3.35 crore while they were returning from the border town of Moreh has given a rally point for the opposition parties, particularly the Congress party, to target the ruling BJP government over its trumpeted ‘war on drugs’ campaign, terming it as a ‘flop show’.

Along with staging sit-in protest demonstrations at different parts of the state, the Congress party has also started exerting pressure on the government for handing over the case to the CBI, maintaining that it has no faith in the investigation conducted by the state police on drug haul cases.

Defending the position of the government, Chief Minister N Biren has countered by reminding the Congress party that during its regime from 2012 to 2016, as many as 10 FIRs were lodged against 28 police personnel in drug related cases and it is the cases of these 28 police personnel who were booked under NDPS Act that should be handed over to the CBI for impartial investigation.

This type of verbal spat between the ruling and the opposition parties is what the people living in a democratic country like India have come to deal with over any issue, but it should not try to divert the attention from the core issue of drug problem that is steadily engulfing Manipur today.

Both the ruling and the opposition parties should not forget the fact that the issue of drug use is not an individual or moral problem but a by-product of a successive failed system for which everyone needs to own up.

From being just a transit route of trafficking drugs originating from the infamous Golden Triangle to becoming the fertile ground for passive drug users in the early 80s to late 90s, and then from proliferation of large scale drug trafficking to becoming the active supplier of drugs and its components along with unprecedented rise in poppy cultivations in the hill districts in the last couple of decades, Manipur has today gained the notoriety of being featured in the United Nations' drug cartel map with every drug haul reported in any part of the country somehow connected to this tiny hilly state.

Understanding the harsh reality of this very fact should be enough to prod the conscience of any political party or politician worth their salt.

Whether one sits in the opposition or the ruling bench, debate and discussion to find the most effective solution to a problem is the basic principle that enhances the beauty of a democratically elected government.

So, indulging in senseless verbal spat with intent, if any, or brushing aside the main issue under the rug is nothing but political antagonism that is antithesis to the very tenets of democracy.

Let us not forget the fact that the rising issue of drug menace in the state today is the reflection of the degrading social and political fabric, for which all of us are answerable.



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