Sunday, July 22, 2018
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For Rs 500, get drugs at de-addiction centre in Haryana's Fatehabad within minutes

22 Jul 2018 | 7:38 AM

FATEHABAD:“Give me Rs 500 and we will fetch you heroin within minutes,” claimed one of the 18 patients in the government-run de-addiction centre at the Fatehabad Civil Hospital.

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Sushil Manav

Tribune News Service

Fatehabad, July 21

“Give me Rs 500 and we will fetch you heroin within minutes,” claimed one of the 18 patients in the government-run de-addiction centre at the Fatehabad Civil Hospital.

As I looked askance, one of them,  a 26-year-old from Ratta Khera village, rattled off: “Drug peddlers are ready to deliver chitta (heroin) right at the patient’s bedside. Most inmates collect a used syringe lying in abundance near the main entry, visit Peer Ki Mazaar located at the rear of the building and inject the drug.” 

Other inmates — Rajesh  Kumar (25), Suresh (21) and Satish (25) from Jodhkan village of Sirsa (all names have been changed) — nodded in acquiescence. To verify the claim, I walked back to the entrance door. Sure enough, there were a number of used syringes, intravenous fluid bottles and other biomedical waste lying in open boxes.

I decided to ask inmate Satish to fetch me heroin at the centre itself. I gave him a Rs 500 note which he furtively hid in his shirt’s pocket. “Wait for 10 minutes. The peddlers will deliver the stuff from across the hospital boundary wall,” he said in a hushed tone. After a call on his cellphone, he asked me to accompany him. 

Just then, Suresh gestured me towards his bed. He looked suspicious. Accusing me of having filmed him and other addicts, he charged towards me menacingly. I resisted, but egged on by three more inmates, he rained blows on me. 

An elderly Sikh gentleman accompanying an addict came to my aid. The nearby police post too was informed and an ASI arrived there just in time. As we were about to leave, Satish returned with a consignment in a black polythene bag. 

“What’s this?” asked the cop. “This is heroin saab and is available on the doorstep,” replied Satish, without a hint of fear even as he claimed Sirsa district had the largest number of heroin suppliers. “Fatehabad comes next where every village has at least five suppliers. Fatehabad town has more than 100 peddlers ready to deliver the stuff wherever you want,” he said. 

The enormity of the menace set me thinking. As I made my way out, I was distracted by an elderly woman who sat sobbing near a bed, a sprightly  five-year-old girl in her lap. She was visiting her son, a truck driver.  “I earned Rs 14,000-Rs 17,000 a month. One day, my friends coaxed me into consuming drugs. And that was the beginning of my miseries. Addicted, I spent all my savings, a couple of lakhs, on drugs,” he said, sounding penitent. 

I decided to meet Dr Girish, who heads the de-addiction centre. He outrightly rejected the charge that drugs were making their way into the centre. On the used syringes, he said the needle destroyer was out of order and he had placed an order for a new one. Later, he sent me a picture of the new needle destroyer.

For  Rs 500, get drugs at de-addiction centre in Haryana's Fatehabad within minutesAn inmate who procured heroin for Rs 500 at rehab centre. Sushil Manav
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