Bollywood actress Rhea Chakraborty’s arrest for alleged drug abuse has ignited a debate on the rampant use of narcotics within Bollywood and among young people throughout the country. Political party leaders, who have been vocal about justice for Sushant Singh Rajput, are now highlighting the rise in drug addiction as well.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Ravi Kisan has blamed rising drug abuse in India on “a conspiracy by neighbouring countries” against young people in India and has urged the government to take strict action.
On the first day of the 18-day Monsoon Parliament session, Kisan said: “the problem of drug trafficking/addiction is on a rise. A conspiracy is being hatched to destroy the country’s youth and our neighbouring countries are contributing to it. The smuggling of drugs from Pakistan and China is done every year. It is brought via Punjab and Nepal.”
Underlining the rampant use of narcotics in the film industry, he highlighted the arrests made by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB), and asked the government to ensure that the accused get the punishment they incur and “bring an end to the conspiracy of neighbouring countries”.
The probe into actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide has unveiled the dark side of India’s entertainment industry, which is believed to be secretly intertwined with narcotics sales and the mafia. After the late actor’s girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty’s arrest for alleged drug abuse, actress Kangana Ranaut issued a call to actors such as Ranveer Singh and Ranbir Kapoor to come forward and get tested for drug addiction.
Many actors and members of the film fraternity have come forward and have acknowledged the existence of a drug mafias running India’s tinsel town. The number of arrests under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act in Sushant’s case rose to 16 on Sunday.
While there is no official data available on drug smuggling from neighbouring countries, the reports of police busting drug-rackets in the border states such as Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat continue to grab the headlines.
Last month, Punjab police arrested two people and a Border Security Force personnel in a cross-border drug smuggling matter with weapons and drug money. Last week, Indian Army personnel in Rajasthan’s Sriganganagar district shot dead two smugglers and successfully foiled the attempt.
As per the National Crime Records Bureau’s (NCRB) annual Accidental Death & Suicides in India (ADSI) reports, the number of suicides due to drug abuse and alcohol addiction have more than doubled in the last 10 years.