Dum Maaro Dum- Got Weed! Education Hub Becoming a Haven for Ganja Addicted Youth

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Dum Maaro Dum-Got Weed! Education Hub Mangaluru Becoming a Haven for Ganja Addicted Youth

  • GANJA- 23,829,266 Kg; POPPY- 34.4 kg; BROWN SUGAR- 1 Kg; OPIUM- 161.34 Kg; HEROIN-0.278 Gms; HASHISH- 6.15 Kg; CHARAS- 5.262 Kg; COCAINE- 0.7 gms;  MDMA Powder- 0.68 gms; MDMA Tablets- 919 tablets; AMPHETAMINE- 0.209 gms; LSD Strips- 1298 Strips. The total estimated value of these mentioned drugs is Rs 50,23,01,619 ( Fifty Crores Twenty Three Lakhs One Thousand Six Hundred and Nineteen Only). As per a press note from the Police Department that during 2020, a record of 4066 cases were booked under the NDPS Act which led to massive seizures and arrest of 5291 persons in the state. The drugs being destroyed now are part of those seizures where courts have permitted the destruction. 

Mangaluru: Got Weed!  Yes, Mangaluru and DK have been making headlines lately with news of drug trafficking and also teens/young adults/women getting addicted to alcohol and substance abuse, and some resulting in committing suicides due to depression or deaths due to overdose. It is learnt that teenagers, women are getting hooked to alcohol and substance abuse in Mangaluru and Manipal/Udupi-the education hubs of Dakshina Kannada/Udupi, and doctors attribute it to the easy availability of dope, peer pressure, or depression.

It is learnt that the city has recorded a marked increase in incidents of ganja peddling, bringing to fore a disturbing trend that indicates a spike in the youth falling prey to the drug. Police say every time they crackdown on ganja peddlers, new gangs surface which smuggle the contraband primarily from neighbouring states, especially Goa, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, etc. The data suggested that abuse of ganja has been on the rise in the city particularly among the youths. Ganja peddlers target college students as buyers as well as their agents also.

While most of the peddlers are habitual offenders with criminal records, some of them are first-time offenders who were drawn into the illegal trade as customers. “First they approach the gangs to buy ganja for their own use. The gangs lure them with promises of good money and make them sell ganja gradually. This happens with college students who after a point of time start selling ganja to fellow students,” said a police officer. Although police have also tightened their vigil in the wake of detection of ganja cultivation in the city outskirts, many say that even some of the cops also play a vital role by associating with the peddlers.

Today, 26 June on the occasion of Ïnternational Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking”, various District SP’s, and Police Commissioners including CP, Bengaluru destroyed the Psychotropic substance (Drugs) seized in the previous 12 months. They were destroyed as per prescribed procedures at all district headquarters in the presence of committees as per the Court orders. The total numbers of drugs destroyed across the Karnataka State on Saturday 26 June were

GANJA- 23,829,266 Kg; POPPY- 34.4 kg; BROWN SUGAR- 1 Kg; OPIUM- 161.34 Kg; HEROIN-0.278 Gms; HASHISH- 6.15 Kg; CHARAS- 5.262 Kg; COCAINE- 0.7 gms; MDMA Powder- 0.68 gms; MDMA Tablets- 919 tablets; AMPHETAMINE- 0.209 gms; LSD Strips- 1298 Strips. The total estimated value of these mentioned drugs is Rs 50,23,01,619 (Fifty Crores Twenty Three Lakhs One Thousand Six Hundred and Nineteen Only). As per a press note from the Police Department that during 2020, a record of 4066 cases were booked under the NDPS Act which led to massive seizures and arrest of 5291 persons in the state. The drugs being destroyed now are part of those seizures where courts have permitted the destruction.

Four Drug Peddlers Arrested, 200 Kg Ganja Seized

The press note states-“Our war against drugs and psychotropic substances continues. In view of Covid-19, we will continue to spread awareness through social media platforms on this Day and throughout the year. At the same time, police action against traffickers will be further intensified in future”.  In Dakshina Kannada district, under the guidance of the superintendent of police (SP) Rishikesh Sonawane 221.9 kg of ganja worth Rs 25,11,080 was disposed of which was seized in five cases under the district limit police stations. As per DK Superintendent of Police Rishikesh Sonawane, “In the last four years, 89 cases under NDPS have been registered in which 153 accused have been arrested and 383 kg of ganja has been seized. It is being disposed of today as per the proceedings of the drug disposal committee and court orders.”

Meanwhile, City police commissioner N Shashi Kumar said that they have adopted zero-tolerance to end the drug menace. Speaking on the sidelines of the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking on Saturday, the police commissioner said that the drugs worth over Rs 10 lakhs that have been seized are being disposed of as per the directions of DGP and IGP Praveen Sood. He further said, “The drugs have been disposed of after court’s approval and proceedings in the drugs disposal committee. In 2021, we cracked 214 cases against drug peddlers and consumers. We appeal to the public to share information with the nearest police station if they receive any information about drug-related crimes.”

A drug disposal committee has been formed and action is being taken after obtaining court permission. Nearly 130kg of ganja, MDMA- 68 grams, LSD strips- 41, cocaine-18 ml, and brown sugar-18 ml seized in connection with nearly 50 cases were disposed of at the industrial area near Kolnad in Mulki after obtaining clearance from the Pollution Control Board. This year nearly 300 people including peddlers and consumers have been arrested. The city police have also arrested a Nigerian, operating from Bengaluru and an Omani citizen from the city. They have also arrested offenders involved in the drug trade from the Kasaragod district of Kerala. Recently over 230 kg of ganja was seized which was being transported in a fish-laden truck.

As per police sources, drugs worth Rs 1,00,28,600 that were confiscated in 50 different cases at various police stations of Udupi district were destroyed at Ayush Envirotech Private Limited, situated at Nandikur Industrial area of Padubidri under the limits of Padubidri police station. The destroyed drugs included 103 kg of ganja worth Rs 30,13,100, 101 grams of Hydrovid ganja worth Rs 9,82,500, 1,362 MDMA sleep-inducing tablets worth Rs 30,33,300, and 990 LSD strips worth Rs 30 lakh. The cases in which these drugs were confiscated include 12 cases pertaining to Manipal police station, 10 cases of Udupi city police station, eight cases pertaining to CEN crime police station, six cases pertaining to Kundapur police station, five cases of Kaup police station, two cases each of Malpe, Kundapur rural and Padubidri police station and one case each from Gangolli, Hiriyadka, and Shirva police stations.

 

It was reported that an increasing number of teenagers/young adults in Mangaluru are getting hooked on drugs/alcohol, and doctors are worried about the situation. It is learnt that in Mangaluru there are many cases of substance abuse, ranging from smoking to multiple cases of abuse including consuming cannabis, inhaling glue, solvents, smoking weed, and consuming over the limit cough syrups. Of these, 20% are girls with depression, have slashed their wrists, or have suffered breakups. The reason is “a new-found sense of freedom”, to show their rebellious nature or that they are on par with the males or because some of them are secure or want to attract attention. Sources reveal that ]there is no problem with the availability of ganja in rural areas, and possibly as it is a matter of demand and supply. It is not as if drugs are being sold brazenly in broad daylight. Even if the police raid one shop and close it down for the illegal sale of smoke stuff, those who want it will find some other way to get it.

Ganja is inexpensive and can be bought for Rs 60-80 a gram as against more expensive drugs like brown sugar, costing nearly Rs 1500/2000-Rs 4000 a gram. Social changes make it difficult to deal with such issues. Earlier, children feared parents, teachers, and elders-nowadays parents work and there is spare money that a child has access to. In dealing with and curbing substance abuse, society has to play a big role because it is very hard for the police to control the drug menace on its own. Yes, it’s sad to note that the substance abuse among teenagers/young adults is growing in Mangaluru, with smoking, trying out ganja…injecting or inhaling drugs, etc -most of these are available illegally at shops selling cigarettes, paan shops, hostels or through agents. Users form a well-knit network and no names are mentioned as they are scared of implications.

The other problem is that the parents are unaware that their children are addicted to substance abuse as they use a lot of masking behaviour. Also that they will not be home on time or they go out of town on trips with friends. With most of the students in various professional colleges like medical, engineering, dental and other post-graduate studies are from other towns and states, they are free without the parents’ guidance or care. Also with so many call centres popping up in the city, and since many of them operate such business at night, there is ample opportunity for all these call centre employees, who are quite young, to skip work and party at pubs, beaches, or at private places. Only when they get into trouble or get totally sick, their parents will be in shock and denial. Some of them are very poor and very naive.

According to the police, the city’s status as a drug consumption centre is high because of the easy availability of ganja. “However, there is less demand for drugs like cocaine, heroin and opium as they are costly and are made available only in case of specific demand. Ganja is commonly used by labourers/migrants,  smokers, drug addicts and youngsters because of its easy availability. The youth are mostly attracted to ganja and charas. Youth smoke ganja mixed in cigarettes. Women consume less as compared to men. Most students engage in ganja and cocaine, it is learnt.

Yes, citizens and members of various community organizations can play an important role in stopping alcohol and substance abuse among teenagers and young adults-if you see anyone dealing with drugs/shops selling illegal smoking items or if you see someone whom you are sure is doing drugs, immediately inform the police or the concerned authorities. Anyone with information pertaining to drug trafficking or drug dealers immediately notify the law enforcement personal by dialling 112, so that the concerned authorities can take quick action and grab the drug mafias. We the citizens can join hands along with the law enforcement authorities in controlling the drug menace in the city, and thereby save some innocent lives from this deadly “disease”?


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2 Comments

  1. Cannabis and other drugs are used as strong painkillers and anti depressants and also used to treat Cancer and parkinsons . If India can legitiamize LGBT marriages why cant they make medicinal cannabis legitimate like Canada.

  2. The biggest issue is the pan beedi shops in Manipal are the biggest sellers of these drugs openly. No Officials take action on this.. Money flows in the pipeline, no issues. These shops are clearly situated opposite colleges, temples, hospitals and below the buildings…

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