Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur on Sunday called for special awareness campaign against drugs in all the educational institutions in Himachal Pradesh and said people’s participation was must to curb the menace.

Addressing the 8th Himachal Pradesh Police Half Marathon-2018 to mark the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, Thakur said there was no place for drug abuse in ‘DevBhoomi’ Himachal.

He lauded the efforts of the HP Police for organizing the event and said efforts should be made to completely eradicate drug menace from the society.”It is unfortunate that about 27 per cent youth in the state are involved in drug abuse,” he said, adding collective efforts and people’s participation was vital to curb this social vice.

He said tough penalties against people engaged in the drugs trade should be ensured so to send a powerful message to all those who are engaged in heinous crime.

“Since teenage years are the risk years thus special awareness campaign regarding ill effects of drugs should be launched in educational institutions.

There was little difference between ‘Nasha’ (Drug abuse) and ‘Nash’ (destruction),” he said while urging parents to keep a vigil on their teenage children so that they could be kept away from this social vice.

He said that the sound mind dwells in a sound body and only drug free body could be sound and healthy.

Chief Minister distributed prizes to the winners of different categories.

Het Ram won the Half Marathon in Male category while Ritu was declared winner of Half marathon in female category.

Similarly, winner of Mini Marathon Male and Mini Marathon Female were Vijay Kumar and AmandeepKaur respectively.Chief Minister also inaugurated painting exhibition on the occasion and envisaged keen interest in it. VishudaSood a student of Loreto Convent Tarahall stood first in painting competition.

Director General of Police Sita Ram Mardi said that main objective of organizing such event was to spread awareness regarding ill effects of drug abuse.

“Physical fitness is vital for over all wellbeing of the society and Police is committed to make the state drug free and for this special campaign has been launched,” he said.