Tripura is currently reeling under the problem of drug addiction as many youth are consuming them. In a bid to ensure that young people avoid falling into the trap and ruining their lives, some villagers of Tripura have decided to promote sports to keep them occupied. A five-member team of footballers from Sakbari ADC village have started a club called Thansa Club that organizes football games to encourage youngsters to develop a hobby. Thansa means “together” and represents the need for community-building in fighting the drug menace.
The founding members of this club are Rosebin Tripura, Rajib Tripura, Rajesh Tripura, Rihamsa Tripura and Karmaram Tripura. They told ALM that some months ago, they met up to discuss the growing menace of drug addiction in the state. They felt that today's youth is more prone to drugs as they do not have hobbies that would give them a passion. As such, they end up taking drugs to feel better.
In July, Thansa began work on organizing an all-Tripura football tournament called Hak-Kami to seek participation from football teams from different parts of the state. In addition, they also worked towards receiving sponsorship to pay for the preparation and prize money. They received sponsorship from MOIC-kalachara, BDO-Satchand Block, Forester, ZDO, and BAC chairman etc. Thansa then announced that the winning team will receive a cash prize of Rs. 12,000 and the runner-up will receive Rs. 6,000.
After this, Thansa set up a committee to oversee the smooth functioning of the tournament. All the hard work and planning paid off as 44 teams from all over Tripura agreed to play. The tournament has already started and will continue till September 21.
In today’s generation we see many youths taking drugs and indulging in criminal activities. The people who have volunteered for the football tournament have done so to show solidarity against such addiction. As we all know, sports are good for the body and mind. Here is hoping that such tournaments give a sense of purpose to the youth so they do not stray away from their own bright future.
This article has been created as a part of the Adivasi Awaaz project, with the support of Misereor and Prayog Samaj Sevi Sanstha.