Special Correspondent

Thiruvananthapuram: The Department of Excise has joined hands with the Magic Academy here to launch a State- wide campaign against smoking, alcohol use and drug abuse. The campaign involves a moving magic theatre to convey messages to the public,

The two-week campaign tour is scheduled to start from Thiruvananthapuram on February 11. The theatre in transit will present a magic show titled, ‘Stop SAD’ by magician Gopinath Muthukad and team, and a street play scripted by Karivellur Murali and directed by Pramod Payyannur. Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan will inaugurate the moving magic theatre on Wednesday. Minister for Excise P.K. Gurudasan will preside over the inaugural function. The magic play and street play would be staged on a platform erected on a specially-equipped lorry.

Awareness shows will be held at three venues in each district. This will include an affected spot in the city, a college and a public place. The magic show portrays a youth whose curiosity leads him to test a small dose of drugs at first.

Over time, he is transformed into an addict. There is also an item to show how a precious life burns away along with a burning cigarette. The 30-minute performance is also an eye-opener to the dangers posed by alcohol consumption.

The street play depicts the catastrophic consequences in the life of a person who becomes an addict due to the negligence of parents.