MHA orders states to immediately form Anti-Narcotics Task Forces

Shah gave directions to form a central NCORD unit under the Narcotics Control Bureau at the national level
Last Updated 27 December 2021, 15:42 IST

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Monday asked states to immediately form dedicated Anti-Narcotics Task Forces (ANTF) under the Directors General of Police to fight the menace of drugs and realise the dream of a 'drug-free India'.

A national call centre 'Manas' would be launched while an effective system is also being put in place to tackle the increasing use of dark net and cryptocurrency in illegal drugs trade. Drones and satellite imagery will be used to locate illegal drug cultivation while an elaborate awareness campaign against drugs will be launched.

These decisions were taken at a meeting of the Apex Level Committee of Narco Coordination Center (NCORD) chaired by Home Minister Amit Shah in New Delhi.

Read more: Drugs worth Rs 1.5 crore stashed in wooden tie boxes seized in Bengaluru

Describing drug trafficking as a borderless crime, Shah directed that there is a need for better coordination between all drug law enforcement agencies and intelligence agencies, not only at the national level but also between the Centre and the states.

He said the Narendra Modi government has adopted a zero tolerance policy against narcotics and considers drug abuse as a major threat to national security, which can only be dealt with overall coordination.

According to MHA statistics, 35 lakh kg of drugs worth Rs 1,881 crore were seized between 2018 and 2021 as against 16 lakh kg of narcotics worth Rs 604 crore between 2011 and 2014.

During the meeting, Shah gave directions to form a central NCORD unit under the Narcotics Control Bureau at the national level. It was also decided that narcotics training module should be prepared at national level so that police, paramilitary personnel, prosecutors and people from civil departments can be trained,

A standing Inter-Ministerial Committee will be set up to curb misuse of dual-use precursor chemicals, which will be conducted by the Ministry of Chemical and Fertilizers. It will have officials from the NCB and Department of Revenue.

Read more: Drugs racket case: Grounds on which Bikram Singh Majithia was seeking bail

Along with this, to stop misuse of dual-use prescription medicines, a standing Inter-Ministerial Committee under Ministry of Health and Family Welfare will be formed with representatives from Department of Pharma, National Medical Commission, NCB and experts related to industry as members.

Directions were also given for the arrangement of container scanners and related equipment for scanning of incoming and outgoing containers at all ports, whether government or private.

The government will also be launching an oath campaign on drug-free India on January 12, coinciding with the Swami Vivekananda Jayanti which is celebrated as National Youth Day.

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(Published 27 December 2021, 15:37 IST)

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