Mumbai: India’s financial and entertainment hub, Mumbai has a darker side as well that cannot be ignored. For decades, the metropolis has been deeply impacted by the vexed issues of drug trafficking and addiction. Tackling the menace is an arduous task as the multi-layered crime spans from how drugs enter the city to who consumes them. Also, such offences have national and global repercussions.
Several law agencies, including the Anti-Narcotics Cell (ANC), Narcotics Control Bureau and Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, have come a long way combating drug traffickers who are constantly evolving ways to keep the ‘business’ running. Drugs primarily enter Mumbai through three routes; sea, air and land. While authorities like the Coast Guard, Mumbai Ports, Navy and Customs maintain a maritime vigil, the air route is guarded by Airport Intelligence and cops man the land.
International syndicates mostly prefer sea and air routes whereas interstate cartels exploit land passage, including the Bihar-Nepal border. As drug cartels often operate from slums or densely-populated areas, it becomes challenging to put them in the dock. While the arrests of peddlers have become a common affair, why does the ‘elite’ consumer go scot-free in most cases. However, a top cop rejected the thought that only influential people indulge in drug abuse. Consumers are from all sections of society, ranging from upper class to those with fewer (monetary) resources, added the official.
Details On Drug Seizure In 8 Months
According to the ANC, it has busted 982 cases and seized drugs worth more than Rs 48 crore in the past eight months. Majority of the seized contraband was mephedrone or MD worth more than Rs 30 crore. The problem of drug abuse has become all-pervasive among corporate employees, collegians and school children. The worrying trend is more prevalent in Mumbai and Goa which are famous for their nightlife.
Mumbai ANC Deputy Commissioner of Police Prakash Jadhav said that they are using all means like intelligence gathering, surveillance and undercover operations to nab smugglers. The action is coupled with awareness and community engagement initiative is one such step in the right direction, he added.
The fight against drugs has so far taught that the battle requires a comprehensive approach. Besides swooping on drug traffickers, addressing poverty and unemployment, which are root causes of the menace, and providing rehabilitation and counselling can go a long way in nipping the problem in the bud.