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Supreme Court directs Centre to make national plan to protect children from drugs

The Apex Court On Thursday Directed Union Government To Formulate A Comprehensive Plan Within Four Months To Curb The Menace Among Children.

PTI | Updated on: 15 Dec 2016, 10:45:24 AM
 Supreme Court directs Centre to make national plan to protect children from drugs (File Photo)

New Delhi:

The apex court on Thursday directed Union Government to formulate a comprehensive plan within four months to curb the menace among children.

Centre was asked to complete a national survey and generate a data base within six months about the drug abuse by children saying "protecting children from wide-spread prevalence of substance abuse is one of the biggest policy challenges facing India".

A bench of Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud also directed the Centre toadopt a specific content in the school curriculum under the aegis of the National Education Policy (NEP).

"The Union government shall complete a national survey and generate a national data base within a period of sixmonths, formulate and adopt a comprehensive national plan within four months, which will among other things also address the areas of immediate concern noted earlier and adopt specific content in the school curriculum under the aegis of NEP," the bench said.

It said, "India is home to the largest child population in the world with over forty-four crore children, according tothe census of 2011...They constitute a vulnerable age group for social, educational, moral and physical development.Protecting children from wide-spread prevalence of substance abuse is one of the biggest policy challenges facing India".

The 21-page judgement penned down by Justice D Y Chandrachud for the bench said that the importance of adoptinga holistic solution to deal with issues pertaining to alcohol, tobacco and drug abuse in the school curriculum has to be"adequately emphasised". The directions were passed on a 2014 PIL filed by NGO Bachpan Bachao Andolan of Nobel laureate Kailash Satyarthi.

The NGO, in its plea, had sought a direction to formulate a national action plan for children on drugs and substanceabuse including all issues of identification, investigation, recovery, counselling and rehabilitation. The bench further said that the entire issue is pending consideration before the government, it would be appropriateto await the "ultimate formulation".

The court said that it would appropriate if the competent authorities consider how children should be protected from thedangers of substance abuse. 

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First Published : 15 Dec 2016, 10:38:00 AM

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