How the abrogation of Article 370 will help fight the drug menace in J&K
New Delhi, Aug 14: In a case pertaining to the seizure of 532 kilograms of heroin, the National Investigation Agency had last week arrested one of the key players.
Tariq Lone was arrested in connection with the seizure that was carried out in Kupwara, Jammu and Kashmir.
532 kilograms of heroin and 52 kilograms of mixed narcotics were seized on June 26 2019 at the Integrated Check Post (ICP) Attari. The involvement of an international drug racket based in Pakistan as well as in Afghanistan had come to light.
This is a case of narco-terrorism having national and international implications involving different terror groups wherein Narco consignments are allegedly being smuggled from across the international border for funding.
The case is being investigated to unearth international Narco-terror linkages in order to pre-empt various terror modules operating to spread terror in the Indian hinterland, the NIA had said in a note.
Officials say that with the abrogation of Article 370 the fight against the drug menace would be easier. There were too many big players, including politicians and separatists who were involved. For several years, with political patronage, the drug lords operated with ease.
NIA officials say that the terror funding case and the drug menace are connected in a lot of ways. The money from the drug racket was also pumped in to foment trouble in the Valley. Now, we are able to make arrests easily and this is helping us crack on the international mafia that is operating in Jammu and Kashmir, the official also added.
Home Ministry officials tell OneIndia that there has been a major spike in the drug menace in the Valley. Officials say that a generation is getting ruined due to this and this appears to be part of a larger ploy by Pakistan sponsored terrorist groups as well the separatists.
In this context one would need to look into a survey conducted by the Ministry for Social Justice and Empowerment. The survey says that 6 lakh people in J&K or 4.9 per cent of the population are using opioid drugs. Opioid drugs are heroin and morphine. What is more disturbing is that 76.8 per cent of the people who are using these drugs are in the age group of 10 and 20 years.
This apart, it has also been found that the use of charas, ganja and Dextropropoxyphene is also quite high in number.
In this context one must take a serious note about the role being played by both the separatists and terrorist groups here. The separatists have for long engineered shutdowns, violence and strikes in the Valley. This has led to a major economic melt down and the result of the same is unemployment.
The youth involved in drug addiction according to the Government Psychiatric Hospital in Srinagar states that 90 per cent of the drug users are in the age group of 17 and 35. Some of the reasons for this high rate of drug addiction is due to various social and political issues. Unemployment is also one of the major reasons behind this problem. Further the separatists are hand in glove with several drug paddlers which has made the availability easy.
Officials say that the menace is going out of control. In Sopore the police, enforcement agencies are seeking the help of the public in fighting this menace. This has yielded results and several paddlers have been arrested in recent times. The most recent arrest was that of Manzoor Ahmead Dar, a notorious peddler operating in Sopore.