Feb 24, Colombo: Sri Lanka President Maithripala Sirisena said that the main reason for increase in poverty in rural areas is the addiction of most people in low income families to harmful drugs.
He emphasized that a special program with the support of all the sectors, including the government in power is essential to control this social hazard.
President Sirisena mentioned this on Friday at the launching of the first program of the 'Gama Hada Gamu' rural program being implemented under the "Mathin Nidahas Ratak" National program at the Mahaweli Ground in Embilipitiya.
To establish a peaceful Sri Lankan society with the support of rural community, the National program 'Gama Hada Gamu' rural program implemented under the "Mathin Nidahas Ratak" has already started several actions including raids with the assistance of Civil Defense Committees to prevent drugs smuggling and distribution.
The program includes building a sustainable mechanism for drug prevention, strongly influence the illicit drug traders engaged in smuggling and selling drugs to stop their activities with collaboration of the village folk and leading individuals engaged in such work and guide them towards different industries and their constant supervision, rehabilitating the drug addicts in rural areas and providing assistance and counseling, conducting drug prevention within rural areas and making aware the society about the repercussions of drug usage through awareness programs for rural folk and school children.
President Sirisena addressing the inaugural meeting further added that when building a good society, a developed country as well as healthy people the main challenge behind is abolishing drugs and added that the programs implemented by the government to prevent and eradicate drugs has produced good results at national level.
The President pointed out that the significant decrease of cigarette usage in last few years has been a huge achievement in health sector. The President expressed his belief in people's support on this national endeavor.
Ministers Rajitha Senaratne, John Amaratunga, Thalatha Atukorala, Mahinda Amaraweera, Deputy Ministers Karu Paranavithana, and other ministers, District Secretaries of Ratnapura, Divisional Secretariat, Directors of Education, other civil officers and senior members of security forces were present at this event.