Nasha Mukt Bharat Abhiyaan (NMBA) – Signing of MoU between Department of Social Justice & Empowerment and International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON)


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Substance use disorder is an issue which is adversely affecting the social fabric of the country. Dependence to any substance not only affects the individual’s health but also disrupts their families and the whole society. Regular consumption of various psychoactive substances leads to dependence of the individual. Some substance compounds may lead to neuro-psychiatric disorders, cardiovascular diseases, as well as accidents, suicides and violence. Therefore, substance use and dependence needs to be viewed as a psycho-social-medical problem.

As per report of first comprehensive National Survey on Extent and Pattern of Substance use in India conducted by Department of Social Justice & Empowerment through National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre (NDDTC), AIIMS, New Delhi, Alcohol is the most common psychoactive substance used by Indians followed by Cannabis and Opioids.

To curb the menace of drug demand, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment (MoSJE), Government of India has been implementing National Action Plan for Drug Demand Reduction (NAPDDR) which is an umbrella scheme under which financial assistance is provided to State Governments/ Union Territory (UT) Administrations for Preventive Education and Awareness Generation, Capacity Building, Skill development, vocational training and livelihood support of ex-drug addicts, Programmes for Drug Demand Reduction by States/UTs etc. and NGOs/VOs for running and maintenance of Integrated Rehabilitation Centres for Addicts (lRCAs), Community based peer Led lntervention (CPLI) for early Drug Use Prevention among Adolescents and Outreach and Drop In Centres (ODIC) and District De-addiction Centres (DDACs) in the identified districts and Addiction treatment facilities (ATFs) in Government Hospitals’.

Further the Ministry has initiated ambitious Nasha Mukt Bharat Abhiyaan (NMBA) currently operational in all the districts of the country with an aim to create awareness about ill effects of substance abuse among the youth, with special focus on higher education institutes, university campuses, schools and reaching out into the community and garnering community involvement and ownership of the Abhiyaan.

A special initiative under the NMBA is association of religious/spiritual organizations for carrying out various activities under NMBA and to spread the message of NMBA under their banner. Taking a step in this direction, Department of Social Justice & Empowerment has entered in to an MoU with the ISKCON for spreading the message of NMBA among the youth, women, students etc. The ceremony was held in Dr.

Ambedkar International Centre, 15 Janpath, New Delhi on 23rd November 2023 in the presence of Dr. Virendra Kumar, HMSJE, Senior officers of the Department, Shri Sundar Gopal Das, Chairman, IIYC and other members and devotees of the ISKCON.

The Minister of Social Justice & Empowerment (HMSJE) talked about the efforts undertaken through the Nasha Mukt Bharat Abhiyaan in the country that helped make this Abhiyaan a mass movement. The Minister informed the gathering about the special events like National Pledge against Drug Abuse taken in August 2022, NCC Interaction in presence of Raksha Mantri etc. Similar activities are regularly conducted to involve stakeholders in the campaign against drug use. Stressing the importance of participation of spiritual organizations in this Abhiyaan, the Minister expressed his faith that this collaboration with the ISKCON will go a long way to illuminate the lives of individuals and restrict them from moving towards the path of addiction and help in making a mentally, emotionally and physically strong society.

 

Shri Sundar Gopal Das, Chairman, ISKCON India Youth Council congratulated the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment for launching such a mass campaign against drugs. Through his experiences of working in this area, he stressed on the importance of a conducive familial and social environment that would help prevent as well as overcome substance use. He stressed about economic loss to the Nation due to abuse of tobacco, alcohol and drugs and affirmed the participation in the Nasha Mukt Bharat Abhiyaan and contributing towards a Nasha Mukt Bharat.

With the signing of this MoU, Department of Social Justice & Empowerment feels that implementation of NMBA will get a boost towards achieving drug sensitized India.

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MG/MS/VL



Source PIB