Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said here today that the State Government was committed to make the State ‘Drug Free State’ by adopting multi-pronged strategy to tackle drug trafficking in the State.
Chief Minister said that the State Police has been directed to target big drug smugglers apart from small peddlers. He said that steps were being taken to destroy illicit cultivation of poppy and cannabis and attach properties of drug traffickers. He said that a total of 2126 cases have been registered under relevant sections of NDPS Act and 2909 persons have been arrested from 1st January, 2020 to 30th April, 2021.
Jai Ram Thakur said that to reduce supply of contrabands, through massive integrated intelligence based operations, illicit cultivation has been detected and destroyed during this period. He said that about 12.52 lakh cannabis plants in 7917 bigha land, about 2.66 lakh poppy plants in 52 bigha have been destroyed during this period. He said that 161 cases have been registered against landowners/perpetrators.
Chief Minister said that recently, the State Police has succeeded in finding 66 bighas of land under illicit cultivation of 15 lakh poppy plants in remote Chauhar Valley of Sub Tehsil Tikken, Padhar in Mandi district worth Rs 10 crore. He said that as per provisions of Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, to incapacitate the offenders, financial investigations have been conducted to attach the movable and immovable properties acquired out of proceeds of crime of illicit trade of drugs. He said that the State has succeeded in attaching and freezing properties worth Rs 11.37 crores in 19 cases during the last one year, which includes properties worth Rs 3.79 crore in 15 cases in Kullu district, properties worth Rs 7.29 crores in 2 cases in Kangra district, bank deposits worth Rs 18.31 Lakh frozen in one case in Bilaspur district and bank deposits worth Rs 10.67 lakh frozen in one case in Shimla district.
While appreciating the efforts of HP Police in effectively controlling drug menace in the state, Chief Minister has congratulated Director General of Police Sanjay Kundu and his entire team for their indefatigable efforts in containing the menace. The State Police was contemplating to co-opt office of Enforcement Directorate for conducting money laundering investigation against such accused persons under relevant sections of Prevention of Money Laundering Act, he added.