Excise and Local Self Governments Minister M V Govindan Master today said the addiction-free campaign of the State Excise Department and Vimukthi Mission will be ramped up by forming ‘Vimukthi Clubs’ in all the educational institutions before the Gandhi Jayanthi day next year.
Inaugurating a month-long, state-wide addiction-free awareness campaign on the occasion of 152nd Gandhi Jayanthi Day Celebrations here, the Minister said addiction-free programmes will be organised in over 20,000 wards in local self-governments across the state with public participation.
The Minister said a sustained campaign need to be carried out to create proper awareness against addiction. “Such a campaign should take the message down to the ward level by enlisting the support of all sections of the society to achieve the goals set out by it”, he said.
“We are living in times when even children fall prey to this evil. This will seriously affect the future generations. The activities of Vimukthi Mission should reach to all educational institutions in the state as our ultimate aim is to root out this menace”, the Minister said.
“Addiction to intoxicants has reached such a dangerous level as it has begun to affect the social consciousness and mental health of its victims. Tackling this challenge is vital to build a healthy society”, Govindan Master said, noting that the Excise Department has started meticulously planned efforts in that direction.
Presiding over the function, Transport Minister Antony Raju said the authorities of educational institutions should take utmost care to ensure that students will not get access to addictive substances.
“We should also be alert to efforts by vested interests to sabotage programmes against addiction. This has to be properly factored in while planning and carrying out the addiction-free campaign,” Antony Raju said.
The Excise Minister released a CD of short films on the awareness programmes conducted by Vimukthi Mission by handing over it to District Panchayat President D Suresh Kumar at the function.
As a prelude to the campaign, a bicycle rally from Kowdiar Square to the inaugural venue was flagged off by V K Prasanth MLA.
Excise Commissioner S Aananthakrishnan said addiction to intoxicants is one of the grim internal challenges faced by the society. The Excise Department and Vimukthi Mission have charted a meticulously planned campaign to root out this evil.
As part of the campaign, extensive arrangements have also been made for providing counselling and treatment services, Additional Excise Commissioner and Vimukthi Mission CEO D Rajeev said while unveiling the details of the drive.
Additional Excise Commissioner, Enforcement, Abdul Rashi, Superintendent of Police and Student Police Cadet Assistant Nodal Officer K Muhammad Shafi, Southern Range Joint Excise Commissioner A R Sulfiker, Joint Excise Commissioner R Gopakumar, National Services Scheme Co-ordinator Jacob John, Fraternity of Residents Association (Thiruvananthapuram) general secretary Jayadevan Nair, KSEOA general secretary N Ashok Kumar and KSESA general secretary K Ramakrishnan also spoke.
A series of programmes will be held across the state during this month highlighting the grievous consequences of addiction to drug and intoxicants.The main aim of the Vimukthi Mission is to spread awareness among the youth regarding the ill-effects of drug abuse.
Messages of Mahatma Gandhi, who waged a relentless battle against drug addiction through his constructive programmes, will be propagated on a mission-mode as part of the campaign, whose prime target is youth.
Vimukthi Mission, headed by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, had conducted a highly successful anti-addiction campaign in the state in 2020.