From Sandeep Sharma
GUWAHATI: Mountains of seized drugs were disposed of by Assam Police in Diphu and Golaghat in the presence of chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday.
Sarma attended a programme organised to dispose of drugs, seized during its operation to make “Drugs Mukta Assam” at Karbi Anglong Sports Association (KASA) playground, 5th Mile, Diphu on Saturday.
Sarma described the incineration of drugs as historic and ‘uruka’.
The programme was organised as per NDPS Act, 1985 with due clearance from Assam State Pollution Control Board by order of District Drug Disposal Committee, Karbi Anglong.
“Like the film Udta Punjab Assam cannot be ‘Ulta Assam’. The supply line to mainland India should be snapped which will contribute to nation-building. Comparing the burning of drugs with Uruka where negativity and evil is symbolically burned, the drugs were burned to stop bad habits.” Sarma said.
Sarma also mentioned Assam Police constable Borsing Bey whose act of honesty led to the seizure of drugs worth Rs. 12 crore.
The chief minister set on fire a portion of the drugs seized by the police on the occasion.
11.88 kg morphine, 2.89 kg crystal meth, 3.47 kg heroin, 102.91 kg cannabis and 2,03,384 tablets were destroyed in the programme.
Speaking on the occasion, the chief minister said that the state government has adopted zero tolerance against drugs as it has adversely affected many families posing a serious threat to the future of the young generation.
Sarma said that though earlier Assam was used mostly as a transit route by drug dealers, gradually it emerged as a big market.
The chief minister further said that in spite of strong police action, drug dealers continued to work in connivance with some bad elements within the system.
Considering the nefarious design, the chief minister said that police has been given full operational freedom within the ambit of law to act firmly and decisively against drug dealers, so that the society can be rid of this menace.
The chief minister also said that the amount of drugs seized could be only 10 percent of what is coming to Assam as drugs that go through Assam and offload would be more than three thousand crores.
The chief minister said that drugs are affecting the social fabric of the state and so there is no question of showing sympathy towards drug dealers.
He also said that the government is working to cut the supply network and stop consumption of drugs to save families and the future generation.
Sarma also thanked Union home minister Amit Shah, chief ministers of Manipur and Nagaland for their support in this fight against drugs. He also appreciated the Assam Police for its act of bravery and selfless service.
The chief minister further informed that fulfilling its promise for development of Karbi Anglong, the government has already announced a state university in the budget apart from setting up a commando battalion in the district.
He also said that the government’s efforts for an airport at Karbi Anglong is still on.
Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council (KAAC) chief executive member (CEM) Tuliram Ronghang and director general of police (DGP) Bhaskarjyoti Mahanta also spoke on the occasion.
The programme was attended by deputy speaker Numal Momin, MLAs Bidyasing Engleng, Rupsing Teron and Dorsing Ronghang; deputy chairman Ritesh Enghi and Ems and MACs of KAAC, Karbi Anglong deputy commissioner Ng. Chandra Dhwaj Singh and principal secretary Mukul Kumar Saikia.
Later talking to media persons, the chief minister informed that since the present government assumed office, altogether 874 cases were registered, 1493 drug dealers were arrested and drugs worth Rs. 163 crore were seized in the state.
He said that in the last two months Assam Police seized 19 kg heroin, 8276 kg ganja, 14 kg opium, 67,650 numbers of cough syrup, 12,93,000 tablets, 1920 kg morphine, 33,014 poppy straw, cash Rs. 1 crore, foreign currency Rs. 13,630, fake Indian currency Rs. 6.80 lakh and destroyed 31 bigha cannabis cultivation.
Continuing its fight against eradicating drugs trade, Assam Police burnt drugs worth Rs 20 crore in Golaghat in the presence of the chief minister Sarma.
In the programme, 802 gram heroin worth more than Rs 20 crore, 1205 kg ganja, 3kg opium and 2,06,906 tablets were burnt.
“Earlier only 10 percent illicit drugs were seized of the total quantity in circulation. This time, in two months we have been able to seize around 20 to 30 percent of the quantity. You can imagine the depth of this market when just 20 percent is worth Rs. 150 crore. This market is valued more than Rs. 1000 crore,” he said.
“In two months we managed to seize drugs worth Rs. 700 crore. It shows the amount of money that was being drained from Assam for such illegal activity,” he said.
“Our generation was being destroyed and middle class families are in distress as they are not able to disclose that their son is an addict. I urge the people of Assam to inform the police on anything related to the drug business. I have given full freedom to Assam Police to function within CRPC with a zero tolerance policy against drugs,” he added.
Along with Sarma, ministers Ajanta Neog, Keshab Mahanta, Atul Bora, Jogen Mohan, Ashok Singhal, DGP Bhaskar Jyoti Mahanta, MLAs Prasanta Phukan, Bhabendra Nath Bharali and Biswajit Phukan were also present.
The chief minister also distributed Covid-19 Widows Support Scheme cheques to four women who lost their husbands due to the pandemic. A one-time support of Rs. 2.5 lakh will be provided to these women by the state government.