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Posted at: Jun 13, 2019, 7:58 AM; last updated: Jun 13, 2019, 8:24 AM (IST)

Illegal de-addiction centre sealed, 26 inmates rescued

It had no expert medic to treat inmates, owner on the run

Manmeet Singh Gill

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, June 12

Health officials sealed an illegal drug de-addiction centre, being run from a secluded farmhouse in Rajewal village of Jandiala Guru, and rescued 26 inmates on Wednesday. The inmates were reportedly kept in inhumane conditions.

The inmates have been shifted to government-run Swami Vivekanada Drug De-addiction Centre at the Government Medical College. Assistant Civil Surgeon Dr Kirandeep Kaur, who led the inspection team, said patients were locked in two rooms.

She said the owner of the centre had been identified by Gurjit Singh Sandhu, who fled during the raid. “The centre was neither registered with the government nor had experts to treat the patients,” she said, adding that inmates also complained that they were given poor quality food besides being mistreated. The two rooms of the house sheltering 26 inmates were secured with iron grills which were kept locked most of the times.

Civil Surgeon Dr Hardeep Singh Ghai said SDM Vikas Hira accompanied the team. He said the centre was named Jeevan Jagriti and it charged Rs 10,000 per month from the inmates.

Health officials said the inmates were given pain-killers and were not given any other treatment and psychological support that is required for de-addiction. Dr Ghai said people should admit drug addicts to government-run centres instead of falling prey to such unscrupulous elements.

“A few people are exploiting gullible parents who are worried due to addiction of their young children. These people are often fooled by such illegal centres which have spread their network in rural areas,” said Dr Ghai, adding that a complaint was filed with the local police station.

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