Is the Northeast drowning in drugs?
A white Bolero, coming from Dimapur in Nagaland was halted by police in Assam’s Karbi Anglong area. A check revealed heroin concealed in soap cases. In Manipur, policemen intercepted an auto rickshaw, with soap cases filled with brown sugar .
The fight against drug and narcotic trafficking in the north-eastern states is an ongoing saga. Just this week, the local news media have reported on drug seizures and arrests in Assam, Meghalaya, and Manipur.
The Karbi Anglong Police on Sunday (March 12) seized 5 kg heroin worth Rs 30 crore from a Bolero in Khatkhati area. The vehicle was going to Nagaon from Dimapur.
Police said the consignment was packed in 390 soap cases.
“The consignment was concealed by making a secret chamber in upper part of the vehicle’s body. The secret chamber was welded properly to hide the consignment,” SDPO Bokajan John Das told the media.
On a tip-off, the police set up a road block along the highway near SBI Khatkhati branch and intercepted the white Bolero (AS 09 J 4746) that was coming from Dimapur around 10 a.m. The driver Mohammad Fujel Ahmed (41), resident of Islam Nagar,In Assam’s Hojai district was arrested.
The police claimed that Fujel confessed that the consignment from Dimapur was supposed to be dropped in a particular place near the Nagaon bypass.
The operation was carried out under the supervision of the SDPO and assisted by officer in-charge of Khatkhati police station Ramen Bardoloi, with other security forces, including CRPF personnel.
Meanwhile, on Monday (March 13) the Manipur Police arrested an auto-rickshaw driver and seized smuggled drugs worth over Rs 3 crore.
The Tengoupal district police, upon receiving input from intelligence networks across the borders, intercepted an unregistered auto plying from Moreh international border towards Imphal on NH-102 at around 8.30 am.
The search revealed a gunny bag with 3 kg of ‘brown sugar’ (heroin) concealed in 73 soap cases of Myanmar origin. Their estimated market value was around Rs 3 crores, the police informed.
The auto driver was later identified as Samilien Baite, 29, from Bongjang village of Tengnoupal district of Manipur, which shares the border with Myanmar on the south, the police stated.
The alleged smuggler, the seized items, and impounded three-wheeler are now at the Tengnoupal district police station, where the smuggler will likely face a life sentence under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, police told the media.
In Manipur state, during the Yaoshang festival, (held on March 7 and 8 this year) the police reportedly seized over 6 kg of brown sugar, 4 kg of WY tablets, 906 grams of heroin, and 936 grams of opium from various locations.
During the festival, about 48 acres of poppy plantations were also destroyed by the police.
In Shillong (Meghalaya): DGP LR Bishnoi told local media that the Meghalaya Police have seized ‘a record amount’ of narcotics in the past six months.
Drug traffickers that continue to operate even after getting bail, are on the radar of the police. DGP Bishnoi has proposed the implementation of the PITNDPS Act 1985, which includes a provision for preventive detention. An advisory board has been instituted to ensure that repeat offenders are detained and sent to jail even if there is no recovery.
Bishnoi also claimed that drug peddlers in Meghalaya are supplying free drugs to the youths of the state in order to expand their market.
DGP Bishnoi expressed grave concern about the shifting of the drug menace from the urban areas to other remote pockets in Meghalaya, and noted a significant increase in the number of young girls taking to narcotic substances.
PREPARED BY NEWSNET DESK FROM VARIOUS NEWS SOURCES