Rehab centre continues to give fresh lease of life to addicts

[Pisi Zauing]

MIAO, 23 Mar: Despite paucity of funds, the de-addiction-cum-rehabilitation centre in Upper Miao in Changlang district has so far succeeded in giving fresh lease of life to many drug addicts.

Under the banner of the Tribal Development & Welfare Society (TDWS), the centre started the yeomen service of rehabilitating drug addicts in May 2021.  So far, around 250 hardcore drug addicts coming from as far away as Tawang, Bomdila, Itanagar, Yingkiong, Pasighat, Aalo, Anjaw, Tezu, Sunpura, Chongkham, Namsai, Piyong, Jairampur, Khonsa, Longding, and Changlang, and Tinsukia district of Assam have been admitted, treated, counselled and discharged from the centre after undergoing a six-month course under the supervision of two experienced psychiatrists, Dr Biswajit Borthakur and Dr Sandeep Das, both from Assam.

Presently, 96 inmates are undergoing treatment here. Around 35 government employees are among those discharged so far.

The team running the centre, led by Bigu Saikia and TDWS chief Sraiong Singpho, faces numerous problems owing to paucity of requisite funds. Not a single penny has so far come from the state government, the administration, or any agency for smooth functioning of the centre.

Miao ADC Ibom Tao, along with EAC Apollo James Lungphi and PS OC Lukchi K Bogum visited the centre on Wednesday. During the visit, they were apprised of numerous problems regularly encountered by the centre.

A demand was made for allocation of a special rice quota of 15 quintals per month, so that the mess for the inmates can be run without any inconvenience.

With the rainy season having just arrived, there is an urgent need for renovation and extension of the dilapidated kitchen. The ADC was requested to issue at least 50 pieces of CGI sheets. The centre also requested for pipeline connection to ensure uninterrupted water supply.

The ADC assured the centre of every help.

Meanwhile, the United Miao Mission (UMM) and it’s youth wing, the Miao Singpho Ramma Hpung (MSRH), urged the state government to “recognise the services rendered effectively by the de-addiction-cum-rehabilitation centre by providing the needed funds, so that the centre can continue its services.”

The UMM and the MSRH also urged the government to provide alternative source of income to those who have already given up or are in the threshold of giving up poppy cultivation and drug peddling.

The local organisations also appealed to the ADC to “allocate a special rice quota, CGI sheets, and regular drinking water supply to the centre.”