Why is Hyderabad preferred destination for drug cartels?

Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) and the Department of Revenue Intelligence have launched a massive operation and seized drugs worth Rs 160 crore in the last two weeks In Hyderabad.

By Newsmeter Network  Published on  9 May 2022 6:58 AM GMT
Why is Hyderabad preferred destination for drug cartels?

Hyderabad: Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) and the Department of Revenue Intelligence have launched a massive operation and seized drugs worth Rs 160 crore in the last two weeks In Hyderabad.

On May 4, Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) searched the house and offices of JR Infinity Private Limited, an internet Pharmacy located at Domalguda in Hyderabad, and seized Rs. 3.71 crore in cash which was proceeds of drug trafficking.

"A specific input was received by NCB regarding the involvement of Indian nationals in operating an internet pharmacy that supplies psychotropic medicines for recreational use to the USA and other countries. Based on this information, the house and office premises of the kingpin in Hyderabad were searched. It was revealed that the accused was running an internet pharmacy in the name of JR Infinity Private Limited located at Domalguda, Hyderabad," said Sanjay Kumar Singh, deputy director-general (operation), NCB.

Several laptops, mobile phones, and other electronic gadgets that were used to operate the illegal internet pharmacy were also seized. Based on the material evidence and cash seized, a case has been registered by NCB Hyderabad. The kingpin who was operating the internet pharmacy has also been arrested.

In the last two weeks, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, NCB, and other agencies have seized narcotic substances in huge quantity.

On May 4, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), Hyderabad, seized 1,157 grams of cocaine worth Rs. 11.57 crore.

Based on data analysis and Intelligence gathering efforts, DRI identified and intercepted a male passenger, a Tanzanian national, at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport here. The 44-year-old was traveling from Johannesburg to Hyderabad via Dubai by Emirates on April 21.

During the inquiry, he revealed that he had ingested capsules containing cocaine. The passenger purged 22 capsules at the airport and sought immediate medical assistance. He was admitted to a hospital immediately.

Subsequently, under medical supervision, the man purged out 57 more capsules for five days. A total of 79 capsules were retrieved. The capsules were covered with transparent adhesive tape.

These capsules purged by the passenger were cut open and cocaine weighing 1,157 grams valued at approximately Rs. 11.57 crore in the international grey market was seized. The passenger was arrested on April 26 under NDPS Act 1985 and remanded to judicial custody.

Investigation revealed that the man traveled to Johannesburg from Tanzania. From Johannesburg, he was taken to Pretoria where he swallowed the capsules before starting his journey to India. He was supposed to purge them for three-four days and hand over the capsules to an unknown person.

On May 6, Customs officials on Friday seized 6.75 kg heroin, valued at Rs 54 crore, from a South African woman at the Hyderabad International Airport.

The passenger arrived from Johannesburg via Doha by Qatar Airways Flight No QR-500.

"The contraband was seized from a packet concealed in the false bottom of the bag. The passenger has been arrested and further investigation is on," an official said.

This is the fifth seizure of heroin at Hyderabad Airport in less than two weeks. The authorities have seized heroin, valued at over Rs 150 crore, in the five cases.

Eight kg of cocaine, valued at Rs 80 crore, was seized from two passengers by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) on May 1.

The contraband was seized in two separate cases. A Tanzanian national, traveling from Cape Town to Hyderabad on a business visa and a woman passenger from Angola with an itinerary Angola-Mozambique-Zambia- Dubai-Hyderabad on a tourist visa was arrested.

A total of 8 kg of cocaine were seized from the passengers from the packets concealed in a false cavity of their trolley bags.

Earlier, the Hyderabad Customs along with DRI had seized 1,157 grams of cocaine, valued at Rs 11.57 crore, from a Tanzanian national. The passenger arrived at Hyderabad Airport from Johannesburg via Dubai on April 21.

A total of 79 ingested capsules were recovered over a period of 5 days.

Why is Hyderabad preferred destination for drug cartels?

International drug cartels are desperately trying hard to push cocaine and heroin into the country to cater to local demand for 'elite drugs'. Further, Hyderabad has become a preferred destination to route drugs to other parts of the country or further to other countries like Australia or the Far East.

When NewsMeter reached out to a officer serving in a central investigative agency, he said, "The seizure of drugs is directly proportionate to the vigorous enforcement. Investigation is also looking into if Hyderabad like Goa and Mumbai is turning as a centre for distribution of drugs. The probe will also expose the network of peddlers located in Telangana and other states."

After the restrictions on airways were lifted, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence authorities noticed a rise in drug smuggling cases. In fact, in the last 16 months around 350 kilograms of cocaine valued at Rs. 3500 crore was seized in the market, roughly the high-quality cocaine is priced at Rs. 10 crore a kilogram in the illicit market, in the country. Post COVID-19, the cocaine price has increased by around Rs. 1.5 crore to Rs. 2 crore per kilogram.

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