Pakistan

LAHORE – A post-mortem report has shown that Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) student who was found dead in his hostel room had overdosed on drugs, according to Geo News.

Fifth-semester Finance and Accounting student Shahmir Asif Bajwa was found ‘unresponsive’ in bed in his room on December 12. LUMS administration was informed immediately after he was found and Shahmir was immediately shifted to National Defence Hospital, where the doctors said he had expired earlier during the day.

After discovering Shahmir’s body, LUMS management involved the police, who have stated that  the deceased’s room was searched and some of his personal belongings and cigarettes were sent to a lab for examination.

According to the police, Shameer’s body was handed over to his family after the post-mortem, and they have left for Shahmir’s hometown Karachi, where the burial was due to take place.

In a statement issued late Tuesday, the university acknowledged that the death was indeed tragic, but did not confirm whether or not it had been caused by drug overdose: “There has since been speculation within the media that Shahmir’s death was caused by a drug overdose. While the cause of death has yet to be determined, the LUMS administration would like to make clear that it recognises that drug and substance abuse is a real challenge plaguing educational institutions and society at large, and that this issue is taken extremely seriously.”

LUMS has a zero-tolerance policy against all intoxicants and has regular vigilance and oversight to prevent availability of drugs and illegal substances on campus, the varsity added. Delving into details regarding its efforts to curb drug usage on campus, the official statement said, “This involves two layers of security and hostel staff. Any infractions are reported and dealt with according to procedures that are transparent and documented. A firm principled approach is taken with all students who are in violation of the zero tolerance policy.”

“A well-trained security force with SOPs regarding entry and exit from campus ensures general safety at LUMS.  The campus is well covered with CCTV, and all reports of drug violations, whether from security staff, cameras, or individual complaints, are followed up rigorously,” it added.

 LUMS further said, “It is also recognised that addiction is a medical condition. In cases where students have sought help, they have been referred for medical treatment.”

The university has a trained full-time psychologist on board for both counselling and awareness-raising on all issues of concern, including drug and substance abuse. “To ensure that everything possible is being done to prevent drug and substance abuse, all aspects of our system are periodically reviewed and revised as deemed necessary,” it added.

LUMS further said, “It is also recognised that addiction is a medical condition. In cases where students have sought help, they have been referred for medical treatment.”