Demand for drugs increasing among city youths
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Demand for drugs increasing among city youths

Rahul Chanda | July 07, 2018 13:20 hrs

GUWAHATI: Following the footsteps of “Udta Punjab,” Assam youths are also getting hooked to drugs and Guwahati, being the main transit point for drugs in the northeast, is also gradually becoming a major market for drugs smugglers and peddlers. 

A source in the narcotics control bureau (NCB), talking to G Plus said, “The drug scenario in Guwahati is deteriorating and the demand for drugs is increasing among the city youths.”

The source revealed that according to the recent seizure trends it is observed that demand for drugs like morphine, brown sugar, heroin, cocaine, synthetic drugs like amphetamine-type stimulants (ATS) - for example ecstasy, methamphetamine, spasmo proxyvon (SP) and yaba (a designed drug made by mixing methane phetamine and caffeine) - has increased.

Project Director of Kripa Foundation (a rehabilitation centre for drug addicts), Deepak Sahney said, “These days it’s very easy to acquire drugs in Guwahati.” According to him 1 gram of brown sugar used to be sold for Rs 1,500 to Rs 2,000 earlier but these days it is cheaply available for Rs 800 to Rs 1,200.

The demand for heroin has suddenly soared in Guwahati with an increasing number of junkies from high-profile families now taking the plunge into the world of drugs. 
 
“There is an increase in the demand for drugs like heroin and brown sugar in Guwahati and there are many pockets where the peddlers sell drugs to the addicts,” said a police official who did not wish to be named. “The addicts are mostly from well-to-do families but the parents avoid disclosing this to the police,” he said. 

The officer said that 1 mg of heroin costs around Rs 400 and one kilo of heroin in Guwahati costs as high as Rs 3.5 lakhs. He explained that these illicit items are also in demand during parties in the city.  

The increasing demand is evident from the number of peddlers arrested from different parts of the city in the recent past. Four persons were arrested by Bharalumukh police recently while filling small vials with brown sugar near railway gate number 6.  

Heroin, in its injectible form (called No 4), is mostly imported from Myanmar through Manipur and Mizoram. Brown sugar, which is a residual item in the production of smack, is a relatively new entrant in Guwahati and produced at select pockets in a few north Indian states. 
 
However, sources claimed the possibility of consignments now arriving from Myanmar as well.
  
An NCB source said, “Consignments these days come from Myanmar through Manipur, Nagaland and then reaches Guwahati.” 

The peddlers firm up their transactions over phone with addicts and the consignments are delivered at spots which keep on changing.  

The police are of the view that the prices of these items has scaled up following the high demand in the city. Police added that muggings are also carried out by the addicts sometimes to feed their habit. Though security agencies keep acquiring new strategies to nab the smugglers, the modus operandi keeps changing. According to the NCB crackdown, 18 persons were arrested in 2016, 22 in 2017 and in 2018 till date 17 persons have been arrested in Guwahati with drugs. 

Persons arrested by NCB in Guwahati

Year

Persons arrested

2016

18

2017

22

2018 till date

17

 

Drugs seized by NCB (in KGs) in Guwahati

Drugs

2016

2017

2018 (till date)

Opium

98.561

0.660

3.989

Morphine

12.203

5.990

0.875

Brown Sugar

 

0.148

 

Heroin

 

3.494

4.822

Ganja

2100.94

3158.06

492.22

ATS (amphetamine-type stimulants)

 

9170 tablets + 5.097 kg

33.867

CBCS (codeine based cough syrup) bottles

14316 (bottles)

6643 bottles

1200 bottles


Drug smugglers targeting high school youths

The drug smugglers and peddlers are targeting children in the high school age group so that they enter the world of drugs and the business keeps growing.

A source in Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) said, “The drug peddlers and smugglers are trying to lure the children, especially those studying in class 7 to 10. Once the students become addicted they would do anything to acquire the drugs and would also be used to smuggle drugs in the city.”

Joint commissioner of police, Diganta Borah said, “The slum children are even used as drug carriers as they require money and for Rs 50 to Rs 100 they agree to deliver the drug parcels without even knowing that they are carrying drugs.”

It is very easy for the drug smugglers to operate if children are used for drug delivery, another police source said. 

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