It is hard to imagine a nine-year-old student shaming a shopkeeper into shutting his cigarette store; but with Amberpet’s Taniya Begum, anything seems possible. The seemingly frail, bespectacled and soft-spoken child is the junior ambassador for Foundation for a Drug-Free World, India. So far, she has distributed over 35,000 booklets on ‘truth about drugs’ and participated in over 100 events to raise awareness about several social issues, primarily drug abuse. He motto: Nobody should use drugs. It destroys lives.
Taniya’s journey began two years ago when a major drug bust shook Hyderabad. Appalled citizens had started to hold awareness events on drug abuse. In one such event at Necklace Road, while her father participated in a run, she held up a board, which read ‘say no to drugs’. Following the response to the incident, she made up her mind to campaign against drug abuse. Over the years, the young girls have become an inspiration for many children and adults.