Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal said that State Police Department would be organising Marathon in Shimla on 24th June every year to observe World Anti Narcotic Day. He was speaking in a prize distribution function organised by State Police Department to distribute prizes and cash awards to the winners of Half Marathon which was organised here today to commemorate the World Anti Narcotic Day. He said that Tourism and Civil Aviation Department and other allied departments would lend support to make the marathon successful in coming years.

Chief Minister said that marathon had been instrumental in drawing the attention of the people and motivating them to be part of the event so as to contribute towards the social cause. He said that State Police Department had been organising such events with a view to associate the common man in checking the drug menace and saving youth from falling prey to drugs thus creating an impression of friendly image of State Police amongst the people. He said that a number of schemes had been launched by the State Police Department to educate the masses about the positive role of police in maintenance of law and order and protecting life and property of the people. Prof. Dhumal said that concept of marathon originated from Greece centuries ago and thereafter it gained popularity world over and since then it had become a trend to organise Marathon by almost every country by associating people for social cause.

He said that Himachal Pradesh had emerged a pollution free State in the country where people had volunteered their services to ban use of plastic in their daily use. He said that recently World Health Organization had awarded the State for making all the district headquarters smoke free which would go a long way in maintaining ecological balance of the State and appealed to the common man to come forward in making Himachal Pradesh pollution free in all respects.

Chief Minister distributed prizes amongst the winners of the Half Marathon. The first prize of Rs. 31,000 and citation in women category was won by Room Pattan, second prize of Rs. 21,000 was awarded to Navjeevan Kaur. In men category, the first prize of Rs. 31,000 went to Mukesh Rawat and second prize of Rs. 21,000 to Samas Yadav. In 10 kms., category the first prize was won by Manju and second prize by Swarana Thakur in women category. In men category Ganesh Thakur and Hari Shankar won the first and second prizes respectively.

In Special Child category, Priyanka Thakur was declared first and Savita Devi as second in girl category while in boys’ event, Ravish and Rohit were adjudged first and second respectively.

Sandeep Kumar, Youth Congress leader won 3KM “Dream Run” in 40+ category marathon. He defies age bar and even comes equal with other young runners.

Dr. D.S. Manhas, Director General of Police welcomed the Chief Minister and said that Police was associating itself with various social causes with a view to win the trust of the common-man. He said that State Police had been organising blood donation camps, afforestation drives, cleanliness campaigns and providing relief in emergency cases. He said that it had been estimated that one percent of total population in the age group of 18-45 were addicted to one or other drugs. He said that it was a matter of concern that 40 percent of students, studying from 6th to 12th standard in town were using narcotics. He appealed parents to spend maximum time with their children and observe their activities closely so as to save them from falling prey to drug addiction.

Prithvi Raj, ADGP proposed vote of thanks. Suresh Bhardwaj, MLA, Ganesh Dutt, Vice Chairman, HIMUDA, K.C. Sadyal, ADGP, Dr. Arun Sharma, Deputy Commissioner, Shimla, Chander Shekhar Pandit, S.P. and other police officers were present on the occasion.