The city of lights Karachi is increasingly witnessing the use of illicit drugs and the non-medical use of prescription medications largely due to easy access. The government has, thus, failed to curb the distribution of drugs and its peddlers. A 38-year-old drug addict, Mirbaz, is an educated person. He told this scribe that he had been using drugs for the past 17 years. “Initially, I tried weed (Marijuana) just for fun on friends’ request, but gradually I have become an addict to drugs,” he added. Mirbaz spends around Rs 15,000 for buying drugs per month. When asked why he didn’t quit, Mirbaz replied, “With the help of doctors, I have tried to get rid of this bad habit many times, but failed to quit it on a permanent basis despite having a strong desire of giving up it forever.” He hoped that the new generation does not fall prey to any illicit drugs while adding that the authorities should take serious action against drug trafficking. It is estimated that around two million youth, including girls and children, were drug addicts in the metropolis while the use of drugs among educated youth is rapidly increasing by the day; destroying the new generation. Karachi houses around two million drug addicts Both federal and provincial governments, as well as other anti-drug authorities, seem helpless against the distribution of drugs. According to the survey of Seedo, an international cannabis price index, Pakistan’s commercial capital, Karachi, hosts the second-largest number of cannabis consumers across 120 cities. Seedo survey revealed that over 41 metric ton cannabis, also known as marijuana or weed (Charas), are consumed annually in the city. Karachi is also called a bigger transit hub of drug trafficking by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Its official claimed that Pakistan was not a drug-producing country yet the drugs produced in neighbouring Afghanistan was illegally exported from Karachi to the worldwide. UNODC has alleged in its report that about 40 per cent of the Afghan’s drug was smuggled worldwide through Karachi. Praising Pakistani law enforcement agencies for their efforts in controlling drug trafficking along the Pak-Afghan border, the office suggested additional resources and technical facilities to prevent the drug trade from Karachi. “In 2018, Anti Narcotics Force (ANF) seized more than 100 Metric Ton drugs and precursor chemicals worth of approximate US $ 1195 Millions,” it added. According to UNODC, “ANF also arrested 1376 culprits and registered 1184 Cases registered.” Internationally, 31 Coordinated Operations were said to be conducted wherein 15.494 metric tonnes of drugs were seized and 78 criminals were arrested. 18 Drug Trafficking Organisations, including 5 foreign organizations, were busted. Last year, ANF also claimed to have burnt a total of 244.837 metric tonnes of narcotics worth one billion USD, while in 2017, ANF registered 1,172 cases and arrested 1,338 people, including 27 foreign nationals, involved in drug trafficking. It had then seized 164.1 metric tonnes of narcotics and 56.4 metric tonnes of prohibited chemicals; busting nine domestic and one international drug trafficking organisations. Among the seized drugs were 32,574.1 kilogrammes of opium, 7,132.2 kilogrammes of morphine, 19,754.6 kilogrammes of heroin, 102,113.193 kilogrammes of hashish, 387.089 kilogrammes of cocaine, 57.07 kilogrammes of cannabis, 1,891.517 kilogrammes of amphetamine, 39.937 kilogrammes of methamphetamine and 23.368 kilogrammes of ecstasy tablets. Prohibited chemicals included 917.5 litres of acetic anhydrous; 50,594.8 litres of sulfuric acid; 4,130 litres of hydrochloric acid and 715 litres of acetone. ANF also destroyed 385.265 metric tonnes of narcotics in Islamabad, Lahore, Peshawar, Karachi and Quetta during 2017. Daily Times observed that drug sales were on the rise in almost thirty areas of Karachi, where such illicit drugs were easily available through a daily business of over Rs 30 million. The areas include Chanesar Goth, Mehmoodabad, Lyari, Hijrat Colony, Bihar Colony, Ibrahim Hyderi, Nazimabad, Lasbela, Muslimabad in Landhi, Malir, Quaidabad, Bilawal goth, Pak Colony, Shireen Jinnah Colony, Pakhtoonabad, Shanti Nagar, Dalmia, Baloch Colony, Azam Basti, Junejo Town, Gulshan Mehmar, Machar Colony, Qasba Colony, Madina Colony, Itihad Town, Mominabad, Sohrab Goth, Al Asif Square and other areas of metropolis, where the huge number of drug peddler group are active in drugs. Dr Riyaz also noted, “Youth starts to use drugs considering it unharmful, but in actual regular use of any of such drug can cause serious damage to the human body leading to any mental illness as weed directly affects the brain and other parts of the body.” He said when used daily, drugs could cause mental illnesses such as schizophrenia. “This is a deadly nerve disease in which humans feels that another is reading their thoughts and making some plan against them or someone attack on them, such patients gradually get away from their circle, they leave to meet people, after some time their attitude becomes aggressive, they fight with their family and friends on minor issue,” he added. The doctor claimed that unfortunately there was no remedy available to date in the world that could eliminate drug addiction. Drug addicts could only be cured with the help of their family members, he maintained. According to Dr Riyaz, “As compared to other drugs, weed is easy to stop; patients do not suffer much pain during and after leaving it”.