There are some 8-10 million drug addicts in Bangladesh, says IGP Benazir Ahmed
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan on Thursday said everyone should work in unison with the government against drugs to eradicate this menace in the way militancy and terrorism were eliminated with collective efforts.
"Drug addiction among the people needs to be cured by creating mass awareness involving people from all walks of life in order to build a drug-free society," he said.
The minister was speaking as the chief guest at the inaugural function of a mental health counselling centre, Oasis, organized by Bangladesh Police Welfare Trust in Hasnabad, Keraniganj.
Appreciating the initiative and the modern quality hospital, the home minister said the government has been working to provide medical services to all.
Speaking on the occasion, Health Minister Zahid Maleque said efforts should be continued to bring drug addicts back to normal life by providing treatment through modern services.
Establishment of modern and world-class drug rehabilitation centre by Police Welfare Trust will especially inspire all sections of the society to eradicate drug abuse, he added.
The 60-bed drug addiction treatment and rehabilitation centre, located in the Bashundhara Riverview area of South Keraniganj, will remain open 24 hours a day.
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid said the role of police in controlling drug abuse and suppressing terrorists is being especially appreciated nowadays as the law and order situation in the country is much better than any time in the past.
Addressing the program as the chair, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Benazir Ahmed said that according to some researchers, the number of drug addicts in Bangladesh is around 8 million while some others say the number has exceeded 10 million.
"There are various public and private arrangements for their treatment but we do not know how many years it will take to treat them. So, we have taken the initiative to set up a modern drug addiction treatment and mental health counselling centre," he added.
Directorate General of Health Service (DGHS) Director General Prof ABM Khurshid Alam, Deputy Inspector General (Dhaka Range) Habibur Rahman, Dhaka Superintendent of Police Maruf Hossain Sardar, among others, were present on the occasion.