The existing drug laws in the state, including the Drugs and Cosmetic Act, 1940 and the Assam Drug (Control) Act, 1950, are found to be ineffective in tackling the problem and a weak deterrent. (Agencies)
According to official sources, 1,234 people have died of drug abuse in the state since 1984 till May 25, this year. The record maintained by the Excise and Narcotics Department said that of the dead, as many as 1,129 people lost their lives due to abuse of prominent painkillers available in the market.
A senior official of the department said that provisions of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 cannot be used on the sale, possession or abuse of clinical drugs as they are manufactured legally.
"What we need is a stringent local law to combat the clinical drugs widely abused by the youths in the state which will provide harsher punishment," the official said. Abuse of cough syrups sold over the counter killed around 20 people within two months spanning December, 2012 and January, 2013 while 87 heroin addicts have died since 1984.
Doctors say that some brands of cough syrup become fatal when being taken along with liquor or even wine made from grape. Though Mizoram is one of the main conduits for trafficking of heroin from the Golden Triangal via Myanmar with which the state shares 404-km porous international border, the main killer of Mizo youths remains the clinical drugs smuggled from neighbouring states especially Assam.
The existing drug laws in the state, including the Drugs and Cosmetic Act, 1940 and the Assam Drug (Control) Act, 1950, are found to be ineffective in tackling the problem and a weak deterrent.