Punjab cop alleges drug mafia, police nexus in jails

Top officer gets threat for anti-drug drive in prisons

Director General of Police (prisons) Shashi Kant has alleged that there exists a nexus between the drug mafia and some police officials in Punjab.

He said the drug mafia has been freely operating in jails in Punjab with the “patronage” of police officials.

According to him, he was under “threat” for taking steps to control drug use in jails across the state.

“I am being forced to discontinue the anti-drugs campaign in jails. But I will not be cowed down by these threats and will continue my crusade against drug use,” Kant said.
His statements have led to a confrontation with state prisons minister Hira Singh Gabria, who has asked Kant to provide details of the threats against him.

Earlier this week, DGP Anil Kaushik had asked Kant to return three police vehicles — a Toyota Innova, a Maruti Gypsy and a motorcycle — to the police department.

Kant said he was entitled to get security and keep the vehicles, like all his predecessors.
Recently, Kant also threatened to expose the nexus between the drug mafia and “influential people” in the state.

Punjab, which shares an international boundary with Pakistan, is a major transit and destination point for drugs coming from Afghanistan-Pakistan route.

The state alone has accounted for 60 per cent — Rs 900 crore — of total drugs seized worth Rs 1,500 crore in the country in just six months last year.

A senior Punjab police officer, who doesn’t want to be named, said drugs worth Rs 3,000 crore are being smuggled into the state.

The total amount of drugs seized in the state in recent years has been high, with multiple agencies such as BSF, directorate of revenue intelligence, customs department and Punjab police anti-narcotics cell involved in operations.

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