Cocaine consignment worth $15 million headed to India?
Bengaluru, July 13: A major consignment of cocaine was seized at the Bangladesh port last month. The value of the liquid cocaine has been estimated at almost 15 million US dollars. This is the biggest drug busts of recent times and what is ironic is that this was a consignment headed to India, investigators have found.
What this drug bust tells us that the drug consignment which originated from Pakistan was attempting to make its way into India via Bangladesh. This is now a relatively newer route as the drug routes have always been from Paksitan to India via the Gujarat coast.
While ongoing investigations show that the drugs were headed to India, there are various other factors that need to be taken into consideration in this case. First and foremost this haul was not entirely meant for the Indian market. A large part of it was meant to be transported into the Euopean markets. There are a dedicated set of people who undertake this job.
However the concern is that this large quantity was making its way into the Indian markets. There is a great demand for liquid cocaine and it sells very high in the Goan markets. There are agents from Nigeria, Israel, Latin America and also Russia who ensure that the consignments are picked up and sold in the Indian markets and also exported.
While investigations into the drug haul at Bangladesh are still on, it is still unclear which port the consignment was meant to land in. It has however been found that drug lords from Latin America were behind this consignment and were attempting to move into a port in India. It is also clear that they were planning of transporting a portion of this consignment out of India as well.
The United Nation's Office on Drugs and Crimes (UNODC) has reacted sharply to this drug bust. Referring to the huge seizure as a matter of grave concern, the UNODC has also set up training programmes at the Chittagong port to handle such issues.
Investigators on the other hand have said that this bust shows that the demand for cocaine has increased in the market. The European and North American markets always preferred heroine, but off late there has been a major demand for cocaine.
This is not a great sign for India which has done a lot of firefighting to bring down the drug smuggling racket. There has been a major drop in cases of drug smuggling and the fact that the Indian agencies have gone after the Dawood Ibrahim controlled markets is another reason for the situation improving. However this new route from Pakistan to Bangladesh to India is a matter of concern. The ports in India have a very soft policy which helps drug lords.
Moreover there is also a need for equipment to be upgraded. Until recently the port authorities had only equipment to verify drugs such as heroin and marijuana among others. As this was not a cocaine market the equipment to test this drug was absent. However it has been added recently, officials informed.