Sale of drugs rampant, says Parameshwara; drive launched against menace

Sale of drugs rampant, says Parameshwara; drive launched against menace

 Home Minister G Parameshwara on Thursday said sale of narcotic drugs is rampant near professional colleges across the state.

Replying to Lahar Singh of the BJP in the Council, he said the police have found that petty shops in the vicinity of many of these colleges indulge in drug peddling. The police have launched a special drive to curb the drug menace and 65 Indian nationals and 23 foreign nationals have been arrested in the past two and a half months in this regard, he added.

“There is fear that the drug menace is becoming rampant. We will not allow Bengaluru to go the Punjab way. Udta Punjab (a popular movie that highlighted the drug problem in Punjab) will not happen here. The government has taken it very seriously. All station house officers have been directed to visit colleges in their jurisdiction and educate students on the issue, besides taking strict action against peddlers,” he said.

The minister said most of those indulging in drug trafficking are overstaying foreign nationals. As many as 1,023 foreign nationals are overstaying in Karnataka. The state government has informed the Ministry of External Affairs in this regard. Around 59 of them have been deported, he added.

A Nigerian national who died under mysterious circumstances recently in Bengaluru, was suspected to be have been involved in drug trafficking. He was overstaying. He died in a road accident recently, he said. Though the government has informed the Nigerian high commission about his death, nobody has claimed the body. Appropriate steps will be taken to dispose of the body after obtaining court permission, he said.

Earlier, Lahar Singh accused the government of being a mute spectator to the growing drug menace. An average of 12 cases of young children falling prey to the menace are reported at the National Institute of Mental Health & Neuro Sciences (Nimhans), Bengaluru. The problem has prompted many schools in Bengaluru to advise parents to keep a watch on their children, he added.

BJP’s Capt Ganesh Karnik suggested that the police should catch those involved in drug trafficking. Mere arrest of some peddlers will not solve the problem. The entire network has to be smashed. The peddlers are selling drugs online. Ramachandra Gowda of the same party said counterintelligence measures should be taken to root out the problem.

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