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Heroin seizure: All agencies need to remain more alert, says Punjab STF chief

twitter-logoPTI | July 1, 2019 | Updated 22:53 IST

Chandigarh, Jul 1 (PTI) A day after seizure of the biggest ever drug consignment worth over Rs 2,700 crore from a truck entering India from Pakistan through Attari, the Punjab's anti-drug STF chief Monday asked all enforcement agencies to be extremely alert in border districts. “The seizure of heroin brings to the fore the fact that drug peddlers in Pakistan are active and are desperately trying to push heroin into India,” said Special Task Force (Anti-Drug) chief Gurpreet Kaur Deo. “All (enforcement) agencies need to be more alert,” she added, expressing fears that this route could again be used by drug smugglers across the border to push narcotics into India. Amritsar Customs Department Sunday seized 532 kg of suspected heroin worth over Rs 2,700 crore from a truck entering India from Pakistan through the trade route at the Attari border. The consignment of heroin and another 52 kg of suspected mixed narcotics were concealed in hundreds of bags of rock salt laden in the truck which arrived at Attari from Pakistan through Integrated Check Post (ICP), Customs officials had said. Deo said the seizure of huge consignment of narcotics showed easy availability of sufficient heroin in the 'Golden Crescent' comprising Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran, from where smugglers were desperately trying to push drugs into India. The STF chief, however, claimed that drug supplies to Punjab have shrunk to a large extent due to heavy deployment of the BSF at the Indo-Pak border and the crackdown on drug smugglers and peddlers by state police. She said the local team of anti-drug force was maintaining liaison with the Customs Department in Amritsar for more information about those who brought consignment to India. The Amritsar-based importer of the rock salt consignment was arrested meanwhile, so was a Kashmir-based alleged mastermind of the smuggling racket. In a bid to ensure tighter policing over the drug menace, the STF has also decided to appoint senior officers of the rank of deputy superintendent of police to head anti-narcotics cells in each district of the state. “Our focussed attention will be on border districts including Gurdaspur and Amritsar,” she said. After coming to power in Punjab after 2017 assembly polls, the Amarinder Singh government had set up STF to curb the drug menace in the state. PTI CHS VSD RAX RAX

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