The problem of drugs has penetrated schools and colleges, and controlling this menace has become a bigger challenge than it was to control terrorism, said K P S Gill, former Director General of Punjab Police on Sunday.
Gill, who is credited with controlling insurgency in Punjab, was speaking at a seminar on ‘Drugs and abuse of Women: Challenges and Solutions for National Security’, organised by Forum for Awareness of National Security at Kisan Bhawan in Sector 14.
“Drug trafficking is not a problem which is limited to Punjab, but has spread to all other states. However, the steps being taken by the government are not enough. Most of the victims are youngsters, and government needs to toughen its stand, if it wants to address the problem,” said Gill.
“With regard to drugs, we should have one policy. We should treat it like a national crisis,” he added.
Stating that destroying our youth through drugs seems to be part of a “larger conspiracy” hatched by forces inimical to India, Gill lamented that the steps being taken to control the drug menace were not enough.
“The threat which drugs pose to youth and through the youth to the nation is tremendous. The drug mafia is linked to the criminal mafia,” he said. “India’s response (to deal with the problem) is totally inadequate. They (drug mafia) are going about their job in a planned way, but we are not coming up with response in a planned manner.”
To a question, he said that during terrorism days in Punjab, nexus between politicians and terrorists was minimal.
However, about drugs, he said, “political-criminal nexus is deep….” Haryana’s DGP (Crime) K P Singh drew attention towards the bad treatment meted out to female convicts in jails across the country. “There are just six per cent women in jails, but the police do not have enough women constables to question them. These convicts are not even provided sanitary napkins in jails,” he said.
Ranging from drug trafficking among youngsters to resultant abuse of women in society, various aspects were deliberated upon in the day-long seminar inaugurated by Governor Kaptan Singh Solanki.
Former Punjab minister Laxmikanta Chawla recalled how she had to struggle for two years before she could get admission in the all-boys class of LLB at Guru Nanak Dev University. “The Department of Laws had a board outside stating that women are not allowed in the evening classes. And, today, 70 per cent of the students in that department are women,” she said.
Stating that there was discrimination against women visiting temples and other religious places, Chawla said that it was up to the women to fight for their rights. “There are still many temples in India where women are not allowed to enter, but women should not follow such diktats,” said Chawla.
The valedictory session of the seminar was chaired by Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who was the chief guest. Union Minister of Rural Development Birender Singh was the guest of honour.