I recently saw an exclusive report in a leading Malayalam news channel; the report was on tail of a suggestion made by the Kerala high court aiming at reducing liquor consumption and the news showed some videos in which few school students in their uniforms and school bags were buying alcohol from a beverage shop. After the reporter’s narration of a well written script it was time for exclusivity, like all other news channels lot of distinguished personals were introduced (both in person and on phone) and the discussion was started in hope that it will boost the channel’s Tvr, but little did they realize that there was nothing exclusive about their news. ‘Drink liquor and smoke cigarettes’ has become the slogan of majority of the youths in Kerala for quite some time, they pride themselves in doing it (more so when others see them too), so few school boys in front of the beverage shop buying liquor wouldn’t bring much shock to the so literate Keralites.
Liver cirrhosis, lung cancer, pain, agonizing death, what more misery could one want, it seems understanding is one thing but working for it is another. The truth is that everyone knows the health hazard of alcohol consumption and chain smoking; they know what ultimate price they have to pay for such a weakness but how many do avoid/quit its use and help others in doing the same. The numbers suggest that each year the number of people addicted to alcohol and cigarettes are increasing in a drastic way in India (even more increase in death rate due it). The more shocking and concerning fact is that majority of the addicts are in their youth (age range from 14-30), the same youths to whom the future of our country is entrusted. Now alcohol and cigarette (don’t even get me started on Pan Masalas) has become more of an unavoidable bonding agent in most teen friend circles, they believe it will make them look more matured and acceptable to others. I have seen many of my friends start smoking just to get accepted into a school/college gang (it’s like smoking cigarette is their membership card, ‘a daring challenge it is’ they would say) and later become chain smokers. I feel so sorry for them for surrendering their lives so easily and at the same time guilty for not preventing them. But I am taking an oath now that “I won’t ever fall a victim to addiction and will save those trapped in its deadly claws”
After all addiction is only a weakness, a weakness to which saying NO is hard but not impossible. So stay away from addictives and live a beautiful life not a half conscious one.