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Drug De-addiction seminar in Patti: Absent heroin addicts miss daily ‘shot’ at life

A total of 917 addicts are registered at the OST centre in Patti. Usually, around 225 come in routinely to get their dose of Buprenorphine.

Written by KAMALDEEP SINGH BRAR | Amritsar |
February 22, 2017 5:01:44 am

ONLY THOSE heroin addicts who were registered at the Opioid Substitution Therapy (OST) centre in Patti were given prescribed daily dose of Buprenorphine Tuesday, when a seminar on de-addiction was organised by the district administration at Indoor stadium in Tarn Taran. Heroin addicts who were absent had to take a forced break from their ‘shot’ for a day. A total of 917 addicts are registered at the OST centre opened in Patti. Around 225 come in routinely to get their daily dose of Buprenorphine. On Tuesday, however, only 120 of them attended the seminar and thus got the dose. The district administration had organised two buses to the addicts to reach for the seminar. The dose was provided inside the bus after it reached Tarn Taran and then addicts were taken to the seminar. Lunch and tea was also provided to addicts who attended seminar.

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Drug addicts registered at de-addiction centres of Tarn Tarn district were also invited for the seminar. Family members of addicts, sarpanches, nambardars, Asha workers, youth club members in villages of Tarn Taran district were also invited for the function where plays on drug menace were also performed.

Attendance was made mandatory only for those addicts registered at the Patti OST centre. A written order in this regard was earlier issued by the the centre in-charge Dr Isha Dhawan. “Many of us are daily labourers. I cannot skip my job. So I preferred to stay away from the function. They should had provided us our daily dose at Patti. I may need to arrange for some other drug to avoid the withdrawal symptoms,” said an addict.

“There is nothing wrong in the move to make addicts attend the seminar. Otherwise they won’t attend it. We had also provided them food and drinks. They were informed about the function around 15 days in advance. So everyone had time to make the adjustments. The seminar was for their benefit. We had no personal profit in making addicts attend seminar,” said Inder Mohan Gupta, Senior Medical Officer Patti.

Deputy commissioner D P S Kharbanda, senior superintendent of Police Harjit Singh, District session judge T P S Phulka were also present during the seminar. Deputy commissioner announced that administration will help the addicts to shun the drug and get training under skill development programs to start new life. He also offered Rs 10,000 to Rs 25 lakh loan to addicts under various government schemes for unemployed youth. He also announced Rs 500 cash prize for the ASHA workers to convince an addict to get treated at drug de-addiction centre.

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