On October 04, 2017, in a seminar titled “Drug abuse-a growing problem for youth and measures”, organized by Karachi University (KU), Brigadier Noor-ul-Hassan, commander of the Anti-Narcotics Force Sindh, highlighted disastrous effects of drug use on people all over the world. He shared the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime 2016 report that only one in 20 adults, or a quarter of a billion people between the ages of 15 and 64 years used at least one drug in 2014. Of the overall drugs users, only one of them has access to drug dependence treatment services each year, while approximately, 29 million drugs users severely suffer from drug use disorders. Alarmingly, drug-abuse is more horrendous and deadly than terrorism. It kills around 685 people globally every day, whereas terrorist incidents claim the lives of 39 people in comparison.A large number of people take drugs to bring about a soothing change in their lives. The youth think drug use can give them relaxation and relief from boredom and anxiety, but instead it instigates adverse effects on its users. Despite this, the trend of harmful drug-abuse is increasing amongst the youth globally, who use it carelessly and unknowingly.Afghanistan is considered to be the global epi-centre of poppy cultivation and narcotics production which with no other income generating alternatives are the back-bone of an outsized proportion of economy of the country. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reports that Afghanistan produces an estimated 90 percent of the world’s supply of illicit opium and it smuggles more than 43 percent of drugs via Pakistan, a country which shares a 2, 611kilometer long border with it, to destination markets in Europe, Asia and to some extent Africa and America.The prevalence of drug abuse in KPK can be attributed to the easy availability of illicit drugs. 11 percent of KPK population is addicted to drugs according to a surveyAlthough Pakistan has made remarkable contributions and has succeeded in discontinuing cultivation of poppy in its territory and was acknowledged as a poppy-free state for the year 2011 and retained the same status for 2012, 2013 and 2014. The matter of concern is that the consumption and trafficking of drugs such as opium, heroin, cocaine and marijuana are on the horizons in the country. As a result, today we have a large force of drug-abusers. Most of them are found in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province that shares a border with the major poppy-cultivating regions of Afghanistan. One of the main causes of the prevalence of high number of drugs-users in KPK (11 percent of province’s population) is easy availability of illicit drugs. KPK is followed by Sindh with 6.5 percent of drug-addicted youth.The Drug Use in Pakistan 2013 Survey Report, a collaborative research conducted by the Narcotics Control Division, Pakistan Bureau of Statistics and the UN, reveals that there are 7.6 million drugs-abusers in the country, with 40,000 increasing rate annually. The majority of the drug-users initiate drugs-abusing exercise with soft drugs like chaliya, gutka and pan, subsequently, they move towards hard drugs like heroin, opium, cannabis and cocaine etc. Amongst them cannabis with around four million users is the most commonly used drug in the country. And, shockingly, the number of heroin addicts is 860,000, its current users are of the average age of 24 years, is growing with fast pace. The Survey report 2013 shows that of the overall 7.6 million drug addicts in Pakistan, 78 percent are men and 22 percent are women. The women, who used drugs and painkillers, were 32 percent uneducated, 35 percent educated, 48 percent married while 31 percent of them were single. One of the significant factors for drug-abuse amongst women is the use of drugs by their husbands and other relatives. Drug abuse affects economic and social conditions of individuals, families and society h, leading to increased financial burden on the public health system, growth in crime rates, s and devastation of family and societal fabric. Most of the drugs-users in Pakistan are from underprivileged and poverty-stricken families. Heroin-addicts buy drugs to satisfy their needs selling things from their homes and their wives jewellery. In our country, the addicts have been seen peddling their children particularly daughters for purchasing habit-satisfying drugs. In Pakistan, amidst other factors, the leading factors that force youth to be involved in this horrendous practice are the political and social upheavals including increasing economic inequality, ever-growing unemployment and political uncertainty prevailing over the last seven decades in the country.The horrific situation of drug-abuse that leaves devastating effects on our nascent generation calls for launching of awareness campaigns through the both electronic and print media. In the wake of the18th Constitutional Amendment narcotics is provincial subject, therefore all the provincial education departments of Pakistan should develop a curriculum against all kinds of illicit drugs for inclusion in textbooks of schools, colleges and universities to make students aware of the damaging consequences of drug-abuse. Moreover, as illegal drug smuggling poses a serious threat to the whole world, the international community should take. purge the world of illicit and deadly drugs should take constructive and concrete measures. The writer is an academic, and can be reached on Twitter @ARShykh Published in Daily Times, October 14th 2017.