By: Ishtiyaq Ahmad
Srinagar, January 18: In a determined initiative to address the drug menace,the Jammu and Kashmir Police, led by the Director General of Police (DGP) R R Swain, has markedly heightened operations against drug peddling and its facilitators.
The region has experienced a notable surge in documented cases, arrests of drug peddlers, and the dismantling of narco-terrorism modules.
Since taking on the responsibilities of Director General of Police, RR Swain has been leading an unwavering campaign against drug peddling, attaining commendable success in the ongoing struggle against this pervasive menace.
Swain’s strategic guidance has led to a significant decrease in drug peddling cases, resulting in a tangible reduction in drug abuse at the grassroots level.
Under RR Swain’s leadership, the Jammu and Kashmir Police has undertaken concerted efforts that enjoy widespread support from citizens. The collaborative approach between the police and the government, spearheaded by Manoj Sinha led administration, signifies a synchronized endeavor to comprehensively combat the drug menace in the region.
In a proactive move, the police has announced a reward of Rs 5 lakh for information leading to the detection of cross-border tunnels utilized by anti-national elements for transshipping terrorists, weapons, and contraband substances. This initiative underscores the gravity of the situation and highlights the unwavering commitment of the police to safeguard national security on multiple fronts.
To counter the escalating drug menace, police officials, including Senior Superintendents of Police (SSPs) and Station House Officers (SHOs), have implemented stringent measures against drug-related activities. The authorities are resolute in breaking the backbone of the drug trade in the region, employing a multi-tiered approach that includes intelligence-driven operations and community engagement.
The recent upswing in arrests and drug seizures underscores the unwavering commitment of the Jammu & Kashmir Police to establish a drug-free environment. Beyond mere apprehensions, authorities are taking stringent measures to seize properties linked to drug-related crimes, thereby disrupting the financial networks that support the illegal drug trade.
Communities and their leaders have praised the intensified efforts, expressing optimism that these stringent actions will serve as a deterrent and contribute to the overall well-being of society. The police department is actively encouraging citizens to participate by providing information that could assist in identifying and apprehending individuals involved in the drug trade.
Recognizing the gravity of the situation, DGP Swain emphasized that a significant portion of illicit drugs infiltrating the region originates from across borders, with direct ties to terrorism and its financial sustenance. Pledging an unparalleled escalation in the fight against drugs, he committed to taking strict actions against narcotics dealers, categorizing and initiating specific measures against these criminal elements.
In a compassionate acknowledgement of the victims ensnared in this heinous offense, DGP Swain assured support for effective combat against the narcotics issue. He appealed for cooperation and support from parents, families, and the media fraternity in this crucial societal endeavor.
Some observers characterize the situation as “narco-terrorism,” shedding light on the crucial role played by border villages in Kashmir in this illicit drug trade. “The financial stakes involved in this trade are substantial, with the value of heroin varying significantly between regions”.
High-ranking police officials have declared the adoption of a zero-tolerance policy against drug dealers and traffickers.
Emphasizing the drug menace as a significant threat to the socio-economic structure, they stressed the need for collective societal efforts to eradicate this problem, fostering a strong, united front to ensure a healthy and drug-free Jammu and Kashmir.
It is noteworthy that Jammu and Kashmir had secured the second position in the nation for its exceptional performance in an anti-drug campaign, earning recognition and honor from the Home Minister.
The recurring interception of shipments, suspected by the police to have origins in Pakistan, underscores the magnitude of the problem. In the year 2022 alone, the Jammu & Kashmir Police recorded 1,021 cases and apprehended 1,700 drug peddlers under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act of 1985.
Figures from the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment starkly reveal the concerning reality of drug abuse in Jammu and Kashmir.
The estimate suggests that nearly 10 lakh people in the region are engaged in the consumption of various types of drugs.
This alarming statistic highlights the urgency and importance of the ongoing multifaceted efforts to comprehensively address the drug menace.