In a telling example of the growing influence of the drug menace on youngsters in Punjab, a 14-year-old boy from Awan village in Gurdaspur district, who has been taking heroin for the past three years, has been admitted to the deaddiction centre at the civil hospital here.
Talking to HT, the boy narrated how he was trapped into this addiction.
He revealed that when he was studying in Class-6 at the Government Middle School, Awan, two of his friends took him along with them to the outskirts of the village, where some youths offered him heroin.
“For the next few days, I went to the same spot every day with those friends, and they gave me a small dose of heroin and I felt very calm after inhaling it. One day, they asked me to deliver a packet to the nearby village for which, they offered me another dose of heroin”, he added.
“I started working for them as a courier for which, they gave me 2-3 doses of heroin every day.
Sometimes, they gave me money as well. I was asked to go to nearby villages, where I was supposed to hand over their packets to the persons specified by them,” he said.
He was not the only teenager, who skipped his school and became an addict. There were between15 to 20 youngsters from his village, who were exploited by drug peddlers, he added.
Everything was going smoothly for three years before the police raided their village last month and nabbed many youths, who used to supply him heroin. He too was caught by the police but seeing his age, they left him.
Unable to get the drug again, he felt cravings and suffered pain in his body and later narrated the entire episode to his mother, who subsequently rushed him to hospital.
The teenager’s mother said most of the youths of the village have been caught by the police.