Cong-NDA clash in Rajya Sabha over Punjab’s drug menace | punjab | Hindustan Times
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Cong-NDA clash in Rajya Sabha over Punjab’s drug menace

The issue of drug abuse, particularly among the youth in Punjab that goes to polls in a few months, rocked the Rajya Sabha on Thursday as members of ruling NDA and opposition Congress traded charges and indulged in heated exchanges during Question Hour.

punjab Updated: Aug 04, 2016 19:23 IST
PTI
Ambika Soni said “the government is not serious about the problem of drugs and that is why no survey has been conducted by it on the extent of the abuse”.
Ambika Soni said “the government is not serious about the problem of drugs and that is why no survey has been conducted by it on the extent of the abuse”.(HT File Photo)

The issue of drug abuse, particularly among the youth in Punjab that goes to polls in a few months, rocked the Rajya Sabha on Thursday as members of ruling NDA and opposition Congress traded charges and indulged in heated exchanges during Question Hour.

While asking supplementary questions, Ambika Soni (Congress) said “the government is not serious about the problem of drugs and that is why no survey has been conducted by it on the extent of the abuse”. Citing a survey, she said “almost 60-65%” of the youth in Punjab have been in direct contact with drugs, and added that “you cannot keep it under the carpet anymore”. She asked whether the government had any central scheme to augment setting up of rehabilitation centres in Punjab. Other Congress members from Punjab, Partap Singh Bajwa and Shamsher Singh Dullo were also on their feet trying to make their points but were disallowed by deputy chairman PJ Kurien.

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Minister of state for social justice and empowerment Vijay Sampla, who is also Punjab BJP chief, shot back saying a survey was to be carried out every five years and the intentions of Congress were clear from the fact that it did not carry out any such survey in last decade.

Congress members accused the Akali-BJP combine, ruling Punjab for almost a decade, of not doing anything to check the menace.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi witnessed the heated exchanges for a brief period during the Question Hour, before he left the House.