BHUBANESWAR: Unable to cope with brown sugar withdrawal symptoms, a 33-year-old man committed suicide at his house in Bhimatangi within Airfield police limits.
The deceased was a diploma engineer and worked with a private company in Uttar Pradesh. In a bid to help him quit drugs, his parents had brought him back and admitted him to a de-addiction centre in the city. He was discharged around one month back.
Police said the victim had become addicted to drugs when he was in college. His parents reportedly spent Rs 8 lakh to Rs 10 lakh for his treatment and he was admitted to various de-addiction centres for at least eight times between 2011 and 2022.
“After being recently discharged from a de-addiction centre, the man’s parents and locals were keeping a close watch on him to ensure he did not consume brown sugar again. His parents also requested him not to meet any of his friends who stay outside their locality,” said an officer at Airfield police station.
In the past, whenever the man was discharged from a de-addiction centre, he would start taking drugs again after a month. Police’s initial investigation suggests as the man could not cope with withdrawal symptoms associated with quitting drugs, he ended his life by hanging from a ceiling fan.
City-based rehabilitation centres said most brown sugar addicts are in the age group of 20 to 30 and while some consume the contraband for pleasure, others do it under peer pressure or to escape from the harsh reality of the world.
“At any moment, we handle at least 40 per cent brown sugar addiction cases. The addicts are mostly youths who are either studying, have completed their education, are unemployed or have quit their jobs,” said founder and director of Samarpan De-addiction Centre, Prabhu Patel. “Every month, we receive 15 to 20 inquiries regarding the treatment of brown sugar addicts. We are treating patients from Odisha and neighbouring states like Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand,” he added.
De-addiction centre officials said drug addicts experience withdrawal symptoms as they become habituated to consuming the same quantity of brown sugar at a particular time every day for several years.
The symptoms include severe body aches, watery eyes, runny nose, mental anxiety, shivering, and tremors. However, the symptoms are not fatal.
After treatment is completed, relapse is common and it is important that recovered patients remain determined to not consume drugs in future, said Patel.