M A I N   N E W S

Rahul’s drug remark triggers row
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 11
Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi on Thursday quoted reports to say that seven out of 10 youths in Punjab had a drug problem, triggering a row, with ruling Akali Dal asking how he came to this “mathematical conclusion” on drug addiction in the state.

“Youth of Punjab should break free from the shackles of drug addiction and focus on education,” said Rahul . “It’s time to initiate a change. Reports suggest at least 7 out of 10 youths are hooked on drugs. It’s unfortunate,” Rahul said while addressing students at Panjab University.

Reacting to Rahul's remarks on the drug problem in the border state, SAD MP Naresh Gujral said, "I am not a mathematician like Mr Rahul Gandhi who after a flying visit to Punjab has discovered that seven out of 10 children in Punjab are addicted to drugs.” Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal said Punjab government has no control over the flow of drugs into the state from Pakistan and that the problem was a national one.

Badal said it was the duty of the BSF which comes under the central government to check the flow of drugs into the state.

Rahul said youngsters do not participate in politics saying it was a dirty game. “The country will never embark on the path of progress till youngsters become torch-bearers and lead the revolution. Country and its people deserved a priority on the list of choices for the youth,” said Rahul. He said Punjab has initiated a national trend by allowing youth with a non-political background to enter mainstream electoral arena during the last Vidhan Sabha polls. The Congress is implementing a similar change across the country.

Rahul said to usher in any change in national politics was not easy. “Youth are not given opportunities. But by getting in leaders like Khatra and other Youth Congress members, who have became MLAs, the party is on road to revamp,” said the Congress general secretary.





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