175 arrested in multi-state crackdown on drug cartels

Deccan Chronicle.  | dc correspondent

Nation, Crime

The countrywide action saw searches being conducted in Punjab, Haryana, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Delhi and Manipur

In a major crackdown against drug peddlers, CBI led an operation in coordination with the Narcotics Control Bureau and police of multiple states. (Representational image: PTI)

New Delhi: The CBI on Thursday led a massive countrywide crackdown on narcotics networks in coordination with the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB), Interpol and police teams in multiple states, leading to the arrest of 175 alleged drug peddlers and seizure of significant quantities of narcotics.

According to a CBI statement, 127 FIRs have been filed by the agencies involved in “Operation Garuda” that started earlier this week to “disrupt, degrade and dismantle drug networks with international linkages.

Under Operation Garuda, a coordinated action, with a special focus on the Indian Ocean region, against the smuggling of illicit drugs and psychotropic substances was taken, the statement said.

The NCB and police teams from eight states and Union Territories, including Punjab, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Manipur, Maharashtra, tracked around 6,600 suspects during the operation that resulted in the registration of 127 cases, while 175 people, including six absconders and proclaimed offenders, were arrested, the agency further said.

The CBI and the NCB worked with intelligence agencies and police of different states for information exchange, analysis and operational preparedness, they said.

The global operation was planned through a "rapid exchange" of intelligence on narco-trafficking and coordinated actions with enforcement agencies across international jurisdictions through Interpol, the agency's officials said.

"Drug trafficking networks with international linkages require law enforcement cooperation across international jurisdictions. Under Operation Garuda, a CBI-led global operation that seeks to target drug networks with international footprints for action against handlers, operatives, production zones and support elements," it said.

"Illicit drugs and psychotropic substances, including 5.125 kg heroin; 33.936 kg ganja; 3.29 kg charas; 1,365 gm Mephedrone; 33.80 gm of smack; around 87 tablets, 122 injections and 87 syringes of Buprenorphine; 946 Alpazolam tablets; 105.997 kg Tramadol; 10 gm hash oil; 0.9 gm Ecstacy pills, 1.150 kg opium, 30 kg poppy husk; 1.437 kg intoxicant powder and 1,1039 pills/capsules were recovered," the CBI spokesperson said.