BENGALURU:Teenage drug abusers in Bengaluru have three favourites -- the affordable LSD and ganja, and the “trippiest” Molly.
Molly is another name for ecstasy. No party, they say, is complete without blotters (blotting papers that carry the chemical hallucinogenic) or ganja.
An official at Narcotics Bureau says, “Ganja costs around Rs 300 for 30 grams and you can get 10 powerful doses from every gram... The quality of LSD varies, so its price might range between Rs 300 and Rs 600 for one strip (of blotting paper). Students can easily afford these prices in this city.”
The teenagers that City Express spoke to say users have a party once or twice every week and fun is measured by the substance served and its strength. LSD comes mostly in sugar cubes or on strips of blotting paper.
A Class 10 student from Indiranagar says 10 out of his 50 classmates do drugs. “They do it four or five times a week. We go to our friends’ houses when their parents are out,” he says.
The teenager says he has tried “everything”. “Whitener, LSD, marijuana, hash, heroin and even meth… but the best is Molly. Trippiest stuff, man,” says the student, candidly.
Molly (3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine) aka Ecstasy is the new rage among Bengaluru’s adolescents.
Another student of Class 10 says his classmates started early: “I know many who started when they were in Classes 7 or 8.”
A Class 12 student says that he has tried to stop his friends and juniors, but no one listens. “What can I tell them? My own classmates do it a lot and are deaf to my warnings,” he shrugs.
What happens when a child is caught abusing drugs? The offenders are kept on a tight leash for a few days. When the parents or teachers loosen their hold, busy with their own routines, the children slip back into their old ways.
VV Singh, Superintendent, Narcotics Control Bureau, says they recently nabbed a man, headed for Kuala Lumpur from Kempegowda International Airport, who was carrying 20 grams of Molly and 21 kg of ketamine in food packets.
“The drugs are supplied from Mumbai and Chennai,” says Singh. “Foreign residents from Nigeria, South Africa and from East African countries such as Tanzania peddle them.”
They reach the students through a grassroot network. “Local retailers sell them to everyone, including young students,” says Singh. “We occasionally catch students doing them.”
Parents are devastated when they learn of their child’s addiction, says another official at NCB. “It always comes as a surprise. They blame themselves for neglecting the kids,” he says.
“Parents are often busy working and providing for their families,” pitches in another official. “But they don’t know the abysmal state of the children today... school girls from Classes 8 to 12 are being lured by the peddlers. They are introduced to the drugs when someone spikes their drinks, then they become addicts and the peddlers demand sexual favors in return for the drug. All the while, parents are under the impression that their kids are out for combined study with a classmate.”
Child psychiatrist Jayashree Chakravarthy says, “Families are predominantly nuclear these days and parents are unable to spend enough time with their children. There are no elders to guide them or show affection. This causes insecurity in the children and they resort to such desperate measures.” Chakravarthy works for the reputed Manasa Hospital in Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh.
Nagesh Babu, a social worker, says, “Parents should ask children to account for the pocket money and only give them enough to meet their needs.”
The Class 12 student also agrees that guardians must keep a close and consistent watch on the kids. “Parents and teachers should keep checking our bags and other possible hiding places,” he says.
A Class 11 student says stricter laws could help, but “that did not work out very well for rape... so, I don’t know.”