Itanagar: Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Tuesday called upon the people of the state, especially the youth, to join hands with the government in its fight against drug abuse and make it a social movement.

“If youth, who are the future of the state, fall into the drug trap, the future of Arunachal Pradesh will be bleak. Therefore, it is the responsibility of every member of the society to join hands against this evil,” Khandu said.

The chief minister made the clarion call to fight against the drug menace while addressing the 41st Annual Day celebration of Dera Natung Government College (DNGC) here.

Khandu said the state government is determined to eradicate drug abuse from the society but with unified efforts of all. “The government can’t solve everything alone. A social movement, where all of us speak in one voice, walk in one pace and dream of a common goal is the need of the hour,” he said.

While revealing that drug addiction has become a major challenge for the state, mostly affecting the young, the chief minister informed the gathering that the state government has adopted the Arunachal Pradesh Psychoactive Substances Policy 2021.

“We are dealing with the problem with three principles: Supply Reduction, Demand Reduction and Harm Reduction. Enforcement is being strengthened and strict action being taken against drug peddlers and commercial middlemen. De-addiction centers are being developed while we are mainly focusing on counseling, early detection and empowering communities through promoting alternative crops for livelihood,” he said.

He added that de-addiction and rehabilitation centers will have skill development and training facilities so that once cured, the youngsters can join the mainstream with sustainable livelihood skills.

Lauding the students of DNGC for the excellent parade and a beautiful mega group dance presentation braving the heavy showers, Khandu said it exuberated the positive energy of the young students. “This positive energy should radiate from our youths through all stages of life,” he said.

Khandu hailed the DNGC, one of the oldest colleges of the state now with 14 departments, for producing distinct luminaries who are serving the state in various capacities. He called upon the alumni of the college to give back to their alma mater in whatever possible manner they can.

“The state government is committed to maintenance and growth of an institution but it is also the duty of the alumni to give back to the institution that made them what they are today,” he said.

Responding to a three-point memorandum submitted to him with regards to the construction of a new parking shed for at least 1000 two-wheelers, a public gallery with steel roof and capacity of 1000 people and construction of a mini indoor sports complex, Khandu assured that all projects will be sanctioned within this financial year.

“I will immediately depute an expert team from the education department to visit the college, which will recommend to the government the way the projects can be implemented and funds will be sanctioned. Not only the three demands, I will see to it that the approach road to the college is reconstructed in a much better way,” he announced.

The chief minister was accompanied by Home Minister Bamang Felix, an alumnus of the college.

Also present on the occasion were DNGC principal Dr M Q Khan, faculty members, corporators, representatives of All Nyishi Students’ Union (ANSU), student union of the college and parents.

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