About 80 percent of Indian children in the Delhi slum of Seemapuri are addicted to drugs, according to a study conducted by the Society for the Promotion of Youth and Masses (SPYM).
The research was conducted after an order from the Juvenile Justice Board found that kids as young as seven were abusing drugs in the northeastern part of the city, and six cases of juveniles committing crimes and taking drugs were registered.
A sample of 1,414 people was interviewed before the researchers found that around 25,000 to 30,000 people between the ages of seven and 40 were addicted to various types of drugs.
Children in Seemapuri are mostly using heroin, alcohol, pharmaceutical opioids, inhalants, tobacco, and marijuana. Many factors were found by the researchers to be commonly associated with drug use: peer pressure, family history of substance use, loneliness, accessibility, and lower class child labor like rag picking and garbage sorting.
The researchers determined that most of the children’s parents knew their kids were taking drugs but didn’t do anything, either because they were helpless or unbothered by it.
SPYM stated that there is a need for the city of Delhi to see how pervasive substance use actually is and that it’s difficult to determine how many children are accessing and using drugs.
When the surveyed individuals were asked if they knew boys who used drugs, 91 percent of respondents in the newer part of the slum said yes, in contrast to 70 percent in the older part.
Fifty-two and 57 percent of the people… (continue reading)