CMs of 4 northern states to meet to combat drug menace

CMs of 4 northern states to meet to combat drug menace

Chief ministers of Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh to meet soon

Amarinder Singh. DH file photo.

Amid apprehensions of Punjab’s drug menace spilling over to other neighbouring states, Chief Ministers of four states will be meeting shortly in Chandigarh on Monday to draw out a joint action plan to combat the burgeoning crisis of drug abuse in the region.

The meeting has been called on the initiative by Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar. Chief ministers from Congress-ruled Punjab and saffron party run states of Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan will attend the meeting.

The meeting is also likely to ponder over the possibility of setting up an integrated task force involving teams from four states to tackle the problem of drugs.

Punjab shares a 553-km long border with Pakistan. Narcotics, including the costly heroin, are smuggled through the porous bounds of this border zone from faraway countries including Afghanistan and Pakistan. This corridor of drug smuggling is dubbed as the ‘Golden Triangle’ and accounts for high incidents of drug smuggling.

Drug seizures in huge quantities are nothing new to border state Punjab. But this is for the first time that heads of all states are meeting to combat the problem in a more effective and sustainable way.

Owing to Punjab’s crackdown on drug mafia that led to breakdown of many drug supply lines, several drug supplies fled the state. It is feared that these notorious elements would seek new clients in neighbouring states. Punjab is also likely to share intelligence inputs with other states on drugs.

The seizures of drugs from Punjab alone are more than the seizures of narcotics from all states in India put together.

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