Kolkata, Jan 17: Security agencies have undertaken a massive drive and destroyed poppy crop spread in about 700 acres in the border town of Malda along the Indo-Bangla border in West Bengal.
The drive, officials said, has been undertaken from the second week of this month in the area of Sahabajpur Mouza under the Kaliachak police station limits of the said district which is notorious for production of poppy and cross-border narcotics smuggling.
"Till now, 1,750 bighas (about 700 acres) of illegal cultivation of poppy has been destroyed by using tractors and other machinery by joint teams of Border Security Force, excise department and local police. A massive drive is on since January 8 in this regard," they said.
The said illegal poppy cultivation is rampant in areas of Golapganj, Sahabajpur and Sasani Parbadyanathpur.
This poppy is used to manufacture banned narcotics like opium, brown sugar and heroin and a large part of this cache is smuggled across this border.
The area in Kaliachak is notorious for smuggling activities, drug cartels and cultivation of poppy and its transport.
Last year, the officials said, poppy crop spread in about 5,573 bighas (2,230 acres) was destroyed in Kaliachak and adjoining areas. The BSF undertakes a special vigil to check smuggling of narcotics along the International Border here, they said.
The BJP has also raised the issue of fake currency and illicit opium cultivation in this area when a delegation met President Pranab Mukherjee yesterday requesting him to intervene and seek a report from the West Bengal Governor on the recent violence in Malda.