In a first-of-its-kind initiative, the All India Institute of Medical Sciences Friday launched mobile methadone vans to provide treatment to opioid addicts in inner-city neighbourhoods.
As a pilot project, the National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre (NDDTC) of AIIMS has initiated the new service of delivering methadone through a mobile van in East Delhi.
Opioid addiction is a significant problem in India, a professor at NDDTC Dr Atul Ambekar said, adding these people require medicines such as methadone or buprenorphine for getting rid of the addiction.
Methadone is a prescription drug given in a syrup form to patients as it helps in controlling the craving and withdrawals due to opioid addiction.
The drug usually comes in liquid form but is also available in powder and tablet variants. It is usually taken under the supervision of a doctor because of its potential for abuse, Ambekar said.
There are very few treatment centers providing these medicines while the need is very high. It is estimated that less than 2 percent of the population addicted to opioids in India is receiving this treatment, which is recommended by various UN bodies and the World Health Organization (WHO),” Ambekar said.
A recently released government survey report “Prevalence and Extent of Substance Use in India”, estimated that India has about 28 lakh people affected by addiction to opioids such as heroin, opium and various pharmaceutical products.
Since methadone is a highly regulated medicine, it is only provided as daily observed treatment. It is available in just about a dozen cities in India, in charge of the methadone clinic at NDDTC Dr Ravindra Rao said.
“Patients often find it difficult to come to the clinic daily to receive methadone, which leads to them dropping out of treatment midway,” Rao informed.
The mobile methadone dispensing unit plans to bridge this gap and improve retention of patients into treatment enabling them to work and lead a healthier life, Dr. Rao said.
Currently, such dispensing vans or buses are available in a few select developed countries in the world, such as USA, Portugal, Spain, Canada, and the Netherlands.
With the launch of mobile delivery of methadone, India joins this elite club, he said. In fact, India is the first country in the South Asian region to initiate these services, Rao claimed.
The van will be parked at strategic places in East Delhi and adjoining areas for a fixed time period in the day where the patients can come and receive their medicine without having to travel to the main clinic.
“In the trial run for the last two weeks, we already have more than two dozen patients enrolled in the facility and the response is very encouraging,” he said.
Based on the success of this initiative, this new approach can be scaled-up in different parts of the city and country.
At the national level, the most commonly used opioid is heroin (used by 1.14 percent of the people surveyed), followed by pharmaceutical opioids (used by 0.96 percent of the people surveyed) and opium (used by 0.52 percent of the surveyed), the survey found.
Approximately 60 lakh people are estimated to have opioid use disorders (harmful or dependent pattern) in the country, more than half is contributed by just a few states — Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, and Gujarat.
Former PM Manmohan Singh divested of SPG security, will enjoy Z+ protection
The central government may withdraw the Special Protection Security cover of the ex-prime ministers and their sons and daughters whose threat perception is negligible.
The former prime minister Dr. Manmohan Singh’s 3000 strong security in charge have been reportedly informed about this decision orally by a senior officer. The former prime minister Dr. Manmohan Singh is aware of this governmental decision who has been asked to wait. The SPG unit posted outside the Moti Lal Nehru residence of former prime minister had also been informed about the decision and had been asked to wait for a final decision. Dr. Manmohan Singh’s daughters had already given up the SPG security cover voluntarily in 2014.
The SPG comprising of 3000 elite force would be available only to the present prime minister Narendra Modi, Congress leaders Sonia, Rahul, and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
The decision was reportedly taken after a three months review involving the Cabinet Secretariat and the Ministry of Home Affairs with inputs from intelligence agencies, the Research and Analysis Wing and the Intelligence Bureau. According to the official privy to the development, who asked not to be named the government had according to the procedures laid down by the SPG act 1988, renewed Dr. Singh’ s SPG details for a year and thereafter for three months, including for his wife Gursharan Kaur.
“The current security cover review is a periodical and professional exercise based on threat perception that is purely based on a professional assessment by security agencies. Dr. Manmohan Singh continues to have a Z+ security cover,” a home ministry official said.
An officer of the security establishment said the withdrawal will hardly make any difference as now the former PM will enjoy Z-level protection, which essentially meant that there is no cap on the number of personnel and vehicles that can be deployed for his security.
Fire broke out at AIIMS today, fire tenders on the job
A massive fire broke out on the first floor of the teaching block of All India Institute of Medical Sciences.
This happened today near and on the upper floor of the Casualty department. The smoke of the spreading fire had engulfed the adjoining buildings as well.
This included the Cardiovascular Thoracic department building. This is where the former Finance minister Arun Jaitley is admitted in the ICU of the CARDIAC department. There is nothing much to worry as this building is quite at a distance from the Teaching block which caught fire.
This building is just adjacent to the Casualty Ward where hundreds of patients arrive on a daily basis 24 x 7. About twenty-two to twenty-five fire tenders were desperately engaged in controlling the fire and preventing it to spread further. The hospital authorities have closed the laboratory on the first floor of the building. The patients too have been safely evacuated.
There is no report of any serious casualty so far. The reason for the fire is being speculated as a short circuit. However, the actual reason for the eruption of fire would be ascertained after the fire is fully controlled. The was panic all around inside and outside AIIMS as well, as hundreds of thousands of patients from Delhi and other states visit here regularly. The building houses nephrology, gynecology, endocrinology, cardiology, skin, cancer and neurology departments where people from different parts of the country arrive for treatment and critical surgeries.
The adjacent building of PRIVATE wards and the cardiology department has several VIP patients including the former finance minister Arun Jaitley who is in critical condition and on a ventilator at the cardiac clinic.
Tributes paid to late Congress leader and three time CM Sheila Dikshit
The three-time chief minister and president of Delhi as well as Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee, former MP and union minister was remembered today in Delhi by her followers, Congressmen, and leaders of Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee.
A condolence meeting was organized by district Krishna Nagar Congress Committee at Preet Vihar in East Delhi and floral tributes paid to this towering leader of Congress party. All those present on this occasion termed Sheila Dikshit as a towering leader of the masses who dedicated her entire life to the service of the nation and the party.
Her former cabinet colleagues viz former finance minister in Delhi government Ashok Walia, former power minister Dr. Narendra Nath, former MLA Naseeb Singh, senior journalist and Congress leader Vijay Shankar Chaturvedi, Rajesh Pandey and several others while paying their respectful tributes said that during her one and a half-decade chief ministership the capital of the country NCT of Delhi witnessed historic Common Wealth Games, introduction of Metro Rail Project, construction of flyovers and widespread infrastructural development which no other government had executed in the past.
The Congress leaders said that Sheila Dikshit always worked for the poor, downtrodden and the people of the lowest ebb of the society and was duly respected by one and all, even her adversaries across party and ideological lines.
While hailing her leadership acumen and pro-farmer policies these leaders said that during her 15-year tenure the green belt of Delhi which merely had 9% of trees grew to a whopping 96%. Late Sheila Dikshit’s son and former MP from East Delhi, Sandeep Dikshit also paid floral tributes to her mother and extended his heartfelt gratitude to one and all who’d taken so much pain to remember his late mother who had dedicated her entire life for the welfare and well being of the masses.
It must also be remembered that during her 15 years rule of Delhi, Sheila Dikshit and her government was marred with a host of corruption charges, one of which that came to limelight was the corruption in Common Wealth Games. Among other charges of corruption in the CWG itself, Arvind Kejriwal led Delhi Government had directed Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB) to lodge an FIR in the 90 cr street light project implemented during the 2010 Commonwealth Games. A panel headed by a former Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) had already indicted then Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on the issue. The Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project in Delhi, which was initiated by her also failed miserably. She was also accused of procuring these low floor buses at higher costs.
Kejriwal announces free electricity upto 200 units consumption in a month
In view of the Delhi assembly elections coming nearer a worried Delhi chief minister is announcing concessions after concessions for the Delhi populace especially for the electorates living in unauthorized colonies and the JJ clusters who are considered to be the largest vote chunk i. e. 60% of the total vote.
While the upper-middle class and the rich never come for a vote they are primarily the people of the lower middle class and those living at the lowest ebb, vote in large numbers as they can be swayed, influenced and impressed by various means. In the past, while the BJP had its major upper hand over the rich and the middle class, the Congress party commanded the vote bank of the people of unauthorized colonies as well as the JJ clusters of Delhi majority of which were established by the later as a vote bank.
But after the Aam Aadmi Party’s coming into the fray in Delhi the Congress party’s total vote bank shifted to it including the minorities which are quite in good number in the east and northeast constituencies including the South Delhi’s Okhla and Jamia Nagar etc.
To keep these vote banks in good humor Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal has announced sops in power tariff by declaring that his govt would deliver free electricity up to 200 units consumption in a month while 50 % subsidy on 201 to 400 units.
This would be a great boost for those living at the lowest ebb of the society especially in JJ clusters having one or two rooms consuming less than 200 units a month. He had also announced free travel for women irrespective of age difference in all the buses of Delhi Transport Corporation.
Prior to these freebies, the Delhi chief Arvind Kejriwal had announced free travel for women of Delhi in Delhi Metro rails, the 800 crores annual burden as if it would be borne by him personally.
Though it’s still a dream source say that modalities are being finalized between both the governments to bring the scheme into effect at the earliest.
If all these sops are implemented at the earliest there is no reason for Kejriwal’s party not coming to power in Delhi by winning the 2020 election in February defeating the BJP. The Congress has already been decimated in Delhi and after the demise of its veteran president, things have become more awry for the Congress which is lacking its president at the national party level as well as in Delhi.
Arvind Kejriwal has also doled out freebies in the health, education, power and water sector in Delhi. All government hospitals and dispensaries are fully equipped with free medicines supplied to one and all and the government schools upgraded to a great extent and we expect to see outstanding results at par with the outcomes of high profile private schools. Water up to 30000 liters consumption is free for Delhites and now free electricity up to 200 units consumption on a monthly basis.
The Delhi Bhartiya Janata Party has criticized Arvind Kejriwal’s attempts to distribute freebies saying that it’s because of the elections coming near that he is misguiding the electorates of Delhi. He added that Bhartiya Janata Party in Delhi has waged a long struggle to compel Kejriwal to declare the concessions, therefore, it’s not him but BJP which deserves the credit.
BJP and AAP both claim credit for ownership rights to Delhi unauthorized colonies
Keeping in view the sizeable vote bank living in the more than 1700 unauthorised colonies of the national capital territory of Delhi and also the Delhi elections likely to take place in the month of February or March in 2020, politics of taking credit from the pivotal issue of ownership rights to over 60 lakh residents of these colonies have geared up between the state government of AAP and the Bhartiya Janata Party ruling at the centre.
Both the political parties are claiming the credit for this issue hoping to derive maximum political advantage at the hustings. However, granting of ownership rights decision primarily lies with the central government as the decision after formal finalisation has to get recommended to the NCT of Delhi after adequately seeking the stamp of formidable approval by the union cabinet chaired by prime minister Narendra Modi.
The granting of ownership rights to the residents of Delhi is to be officially given a green signal by the union ministry of Urban development of which Hardev Puri is the minister. According to union minister Hardev Puri the government has formally taken a decision to grant ownership rights to lakhs of residents of over 1789 unauthorised colonies within a months time provided the stakeholders especially the Delhi government responds quickly and adequately to its queries in this regard.
If this really happens it would benefit about 60 lakh people of Delhi whose power of attorney would be converted into the registered deed giving them legal ownership rights.
It may be recalled that Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal had recently held a press conference in order to claim full political credit for granting ownership rights to Delhi residents by saying that it was primarily the Delhi government which has sent the proposal to the union ministry of UD for approval and it has been given green signal by the central government whereas the union UD minister Hardev Puri has contradicted Kejriwal’s claim by saying that it’s primarily the BJP led central government’s initiative which had for the very first time constituted the committee to grant ownership rights to the residents of more than 1789 unauthorized colonies.
It is the central government which is concerned for the welfare and well being of 60 lakh odd people who reside in these colonies, not AAP as claimed by CM Arvind Kejriwal.
It may be recalled that before 1998 it was the BJP which ruled Delhi for a good time and Delhi was considered to be the BJP stronghold. But under late chief minister Sheila Dikshit Congress-ruled Delhi for three consecutive terms from 1998 till 2013 finally let AAP won with a landslide victory which bagged 67 seats out of 70 with no Congress MLA and BJP getting merely three seats.
It is since then that the saffron party is trying its best to capture Delhi state. Now since the elections are just 8 months away the BJP does not want to lose any chance further.
Hence it’s trying its best to grant the ownership rights to lakhs of citizens of unauthorized colonies for which Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal is leaving no stone unturned to claim undue credit.
Followers bid last adieu to Sheila Dikshit at Nigambodh ghat
Three term CM of Delhi Sheila Dikshit dies at 81
Ownership rights to residents of unauthorised colonies in Delhi says Kejriwal
BJP MP Verma meets LG and hands over the list of minority religious structures on govt land
CM Arvind Kejrival inaugurates CCTV camera installation ceremony in New Delhi
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