DJMC organises event on media’s role in combating drug meance

Role of media in the fight against drug menace was highlighted at an event held at Govt. College for Women, M.A. Road, Srinagar on Monday (12 December 2022).

The event was organised by Department of Journalism and Mass Communication in collaboration with the NSS wing of the college as part of the ongoing ‘My College, My Pride’ initiative. Besides students, the event was attended by faculty members of the college.

Speaking on the occasion, Principal, Prof. (Dr.) Ruhi Jan Kanth said conducting such events is the need of the hour as the drug abuse among youngsters has reached alarming level. She reiterated the college’s commitment towards making ‘Nasha Mukht Bharat’ (Drug Free India) campaign a success. Prof. Ruhi also stressed on the role of media and academic institutions in this respect.

NSS Programme Officer, Dr. Shabana Gulzar said drug addiction is destroying young lives and referred to the efforts of NSS wing of the college in spreading awareness among the students. The event was coordinated by HOD Journalism and Mass Communication, Dr. Suhail Ahmad and senior NSS Officer, Dr. Nuzhat Gul.

The main attraction of the event was the screening of multimedia news feature stories done by journalism students of the college for various local and international media outlets. These included ‘Kashmir leaves Punjab behind as drug abuse reaches 2.87%’ by Aleena Mir (2017 batch); ‘Confessions of a heroin addict’ by Amir Rafi and Masroor Ashraf (2019 batch), ‘Unending Drug Menace in Kashmir’ by Sualiha Zubair (2020 batch) and Irshad Fayaz (2019 batch).

Mir Yasir Mukhtar of 2018 batch shared his experience of working on in-depth and widely acclaimed multimedia stories titled ‘Inside a Booming Black Market for Heroin in the Shadow of the Himalayas’ which was published by international media outlet ‘Vice News’ and ‘Kashmir in drug net: Dark visitors of an abandoned house’ published by local news portal ‘Free Press Kashmir’.

While offering a peep into the lives of the youth addicted to drugs, Yasir referred to the stigma that puts them at greater risk of societal isolation. He said the substance abusers are often looked down upon as hardened criminals in the society which makes their recovery even more difficult. Stating that substance abusers are subjected to systematic discrimination and stigma, Yasir called for more empathetic approach from the society.

Amir Rafi of 2019 batch shared the experience of working on a story wherein a young heroin addict shared chilling details about the drug mafia. Mehran Bhat (2020 batch) shared his experience of working on a piece titled ‘A Srinagar Teenager’s Journey From Drug Addiction to Sobriety’. Hashim Zakir (2021 batch) shared his experience of working closely with some of the substance abusers and how drug mafia has spread its tentacles in the society.

The programme proceedings were conducted by Sualiha Zubair and Nazakat Aslam while Maleeha Sofi presented formal Vote of Thanks. She also shared her views on the sensitive subject.


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