75-yr-old woman booked in 100 cases, jailed for 20 yrs

A habitual bootlegger, 75-year-old Punjab woman booked in nearly 100 cases

Paro Devi has spent over a decade behind bars

Paro was again arrested about two months ago. The police confiscated several kilograms of poppy husk from her possession. Representative image: Pixabay

A septuagenarian Punjab woman has earned the dubious distinction of being booked in a whopping nearly 100 cases reportedly under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS) and Excise Act.

This apparently unrelenting habitual bootlegger has also been involved in drug trade and has spent a total span much over a decade behind bars for various offences, said sources. But that perhaps seems no deterrent for 75-year old Paro Devi of Sukhera Bodla village in Punjab’s Fazilka district. Paro was again arrested about two months ago. The police confiscated several kilograms of poppy husk from her possession. Paro moved out of jail three days ago.

That’s not all. A lot of members of her family too have been allegedly involved in the illegal trade of bootlegging and drugs. They have been arrested several times and some have spent years in prison. From her husband to son, son-in-law, grandson and daughter-in-law, all found way to make money through this illegal trade and eventually landed in police net.

Paro Devi has been into this trade for several decades now. Her husband Bara Singh was a bootlegger himself. For years, Paro’s son Chan Singh had been involved in drug trade. He has cases against him and was recently released from the Ferozepur Central Jail after languishing for 10 years behind bars. One of Paro’s sons-in-law, Surjit Singh, is facing trial in NDPS cases.

Paro’s daughter-in-law, Nirmala, is reportedly facing charges under the NDPS Act. A few days ago, she was caught in Jalalabad by the police with thousands of intoxicating tablets. Paro’s grandson Sonu too has been convicted under the NDPS Act. He is serving a prison term in Ferozepur central jail in Punjab.

Even as Paro Devi maintains she has nothing to do with the illegal trade anymore, the police in Fazilka say they will make sure no offences are committed and she and her family members are brought to justice. Another of Paro’s kin, Paramjit, was also recently arrested with thousands of sedative tablets. Her sibling Raju is also facing similar charges.

Border state Punjab has high incidents of drug trafficking, especially of high-priced heroin, that makes its way into Punjab through Pakistan and faraway Afghanistan.