Opioid abuse has become a serious public health issue, especially in the United States that affects almost every community and family in some way. Drug overdose deaths are the leading cause of injury death in the nation. Each year, drug abuse causes millions of serious illnesses or injuries among Americans.
Bollywood’s legendary musician Pritam Chakraborty has launched a seven-city Bollywood music tour to raise awareness across the nation about the Opioid Epidemic. On Sunday Jan 14th, a press conference was hosted at the Indian Consulate in New York announcing the launch of the much awaited and the historic North American Tour of Bollywood Music Legend Pritam Chakraborty dedicated to the cause of Opioid Epidemic awareness in America.
In his address, Pritam stated,“I am extremely happy to be associated with this extremely important cause and will help in whatever way I can with this tour and even otherwise in fighting this epidemic. He felt that wrong messages are being given to young minds about drugs and using drugs is becoming a part of popular and hip culture. A large part of this epidemic is due to ignorance of harmful effects of drugs.”
With more than 600 songs in 120 movies to Pritam’s credit, this tour will be the grandest Bollywood musical journey America has ever seen with eight singers and extraordinary performers in seven cities across North America.
“We are extremely pleased that legendary Pritam Chakraborty is dedicating this historic tour to the awareness of opioid Epidemic Awareness, which as we all know is America #1 crisis and a national emergency as declared by our President. With more than 500,000 American deaths, the message needs to reach all youth to abstain from drugs. Indian kids are especially susceptible given the high pressure to succeed and we are glad that Pritam Da is so involved in this cause,” said Dr Sanjay Gupta, President, American Pain Association who along with Dr. Kavita Gupta , President of AAPI East Coast, Karl Karla with Live2u and Anand and Sona Dawda from Cinema On Stage organized this press conference.
Ambassador Chakravorty, while addressing the audience, stated that drugs are killing more people than traffic accidents and guns in America and is a major concern. He felt that unfortunately this issue is not discussed and kept under a rug and has become a silent epidemic. “We need more and more awareness and this tour will be a great platform to reach Indian Diaspora. I thank Dr. Sanjay and Kavita Gupta in taking this initiative and feel that involvement of Bollywood is one of the best ways to penetrate young minds and hearts,” he said.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta thanked Ambassador Chakravorty to be part of this initiative from the very beginning last year when Dr Gupta presented the initiative to the now New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy and Ambassador Chakravorty at Dr. Gupta’s home along with Dr. Kavita Gupta.
Dr. Kavita Gupta stated that we have more than 100,000 Indian Physicians in America and together we can help eradicate this deadly epidemic which is affecting our kids and youth. “We all need to take it seriously and put whatever effort we can, as safety and future of our next generation is at stake. We have one 9/11 happening every 3 weeks and it is time to stop this before more youth is killed,” she said.