300 students participate in JKAUMA rally against drug addiction in Srinagar

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Srinagar, Mar 13: About 300 students, from different schools and colleges, participated in a rally in the summer capital, Srinagar, to raise awareness about ill effect of drug addiction and promote healthy living through Martial Arts.

The rally was organized by Jammu and Kashmir Academy of Unified Martial Arts (JKAUMA) in collaboration with District Administration Srinagar on the occasion of ‘No Smoking Day’ under its flagship initiative — ‘Drugs out, Sports In’.

A similar rally was organized by District Administration, Baramulla in collaboration with Youth Service and Sports and JKAUMA team in which over 400 students from various schools participated.

About 300 school students assembled at Pratap Park opposite Press Enclave in Srinagar and raised slogans against drug addiction in general and smoking in particular.

Holding placards, which read, ‘Drugs Out, Sports In, ‘Be proud to be a quitter of Smoking’, besides slogans, the students then marched towards historic Ghanta Ghar in Lal Chowk, the nerve centre of the summer capital.

The students then held a Martial Arts training session in the park opposite Ghanta Ghar, where students were made aware about ill effects of drug addiction and benefits to remain healthy.

The schools which participated in the rally — included Hatric Public School, Linton Hall, Arun Public.

The rally was flagged off by District Officer, Srinagar, Youth Service and Sports, Sunil Singh Sambyal, who appreciated the initiative launched by JKAUMA in the summer capital. “Children are the further of our society and drugs are posing a serious threat to them. We have collectively, as a society, play a role in eradicating this threat and sports could be used as a tool to fight the menace of drugs,” he added. 

The JKAUMA has launched ‘Drugs Out, Sports In’ initiative last year to fight drug addiction in the state by promoting healthy living through Martial arts. In this endeavor, JKAUMA has been organizing seminars in different schools and colleges to spread awareness among students about the ill effects of drug addiction and how to resist and overcome this menace.

A recent study conducted in a Drug De-addiction Centre in Srinagar found that over two-thirds of patients in the study had started substance abuse in the age group of 11-20 years. Meanwhile, another study claims that the percentage of Valley youths, who are affected by drug abuse, has risen to about 40 percent from five percent in 2008.

“One of the major problems in drug de-addiction is a relapse because the victims are unable to locate any constructive platform which can engage them positively. JKAUMA intends to fill that vacuum by bringing in martial arts, which not only focuses on physical development but strengthening the mental facilities of a person,” JKAUMA General Secretary Rameez Khan said.