My Journey with Drugs – Mr.Ajitam Pandey

I was born in a well-known family in Birgunj (Southern Nepal). We owned a couple of businesses and factories in the area so we were quite well off too. In my middle-school days, I remember I used to rebel and go to the cinema a lot with my friends. Going to the cinema as a teenager was a taboo back in the days.

Around that time, I was getting more eager to do things that were somehow unorthodox and forbidden. I also had a cocky attitude about me so if somebody told me not to smoke cigarettes, I would most probably smoke just because someone told me not to. That was the nature I had built.

Mr. Ajitam Pandey

 At the age of 13, I took Nitro Vat for the first time. If you don’t know about that drug, it makes you feel super strong, confident and quite aggressive.

 But I enjoyed that aggression, I loved how those pills worked on me. Every drug addict has his choice of drugs you know, it’s called “choice of a drug” because you really like the feeling you get from that specific drug. Nitro Vat was my first choice of drug and it stayed with me for many years to come.


As I spent many years with drugs, I started losing all of my control over it. That is when you know you are deeply dependent and addicted, that is when you are seriously taking drugs without looking back.The first time I realized that I had no control over myself was at a point where my weight was 39kg (85lbs). I was drinking excessive amounts of alcohol every day, still taking Nitro vat on a daily basis and also started taking heroin. And to top it all off, none of those drugs worked on me anymore. That was the lowest point I have ever been in my life.

You know, I don’t think many people know this but every drug addict somehow deep down feels that they are a good person, that self-acknowledgment of “I am a nice person” is always there. When someone comes to tell you otherwise, that hurts really bad. I have been in several situations like that where someone just shattered my dignity and self-respect with just a few exchanges of words and there was nothing I could do about it. I have never felt so helpless, It felt like my world was turning upside down with a brutal reality check.

Ajitam reminisces his past

 One day, I heard my parents having a conversation, my father was telling my mom” I don’t know what to do with Ajitam anymore. If I allow him to keep taking drugs, I am afraid he will die from an overdose. If I make him stop, I am afraid he will die suffering from withdrawal. I love him much more than any of our other children because he is so weak, he is the weakest in our family. But, I don’t want to show that I still love him. I will take care of him in other ways, my own way”  When I heard that, suddenly I found myself with an intense desire to live and live better. I also had to show my father that I can handle myself because I wanted to take away his worries about me.


Sano Paila

Following that incident, my parents brought me to Sano Paila, this rehabilitation center in Birgunj. It was not easy to be in rehabilitation but I had a clear motive to not just quit drugs but take complete responsibility for my own life.

 It has now been 5 years journey with Sano Paila and they have been such wonderful support in opening a new chapter in my life. The best thing that Sano Paila did and still does effectively is how they saw my hunger for leadership and kept giving me roles of different leadership and responsible positions.

Now I am a program manager in this rehabilitation center. My father is no more but I must say I take great pride in what I am now and my work, which is helping other people get off from drug-induced self-destructive life.

Ajitam counseling rehabilitating users at Sano Paila

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