We want to go to the root of drug abuse in State: Bommai

Police to organise awareness programmes in educational institutions, including private colleges, and take action if they are found guilty

Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai told journalists in Hubli on Sunday that over the years, “we have been noticing that there is widespread drug abuse in society. It is not only prevalent among the rich and powerful but also among students. It is not only noticed in the film industry but also in several other fields.”

“Till now, only consumers were being arrested and they managed to get out of jail within a few days. But now we want to go to the root of the problem and catch both the suppliers and consumers. We will wage a war on drug abuse across the State, in all walks of life. We will not only tackle the problem at the local level but also at the national and international level. We are working with the Union government in this task,’’ he said.

The police recently arrested some foreigners, including a Canadian national and a Nigerian national. We have intimated the External Affairs Ministry about this,” Bommai said.

Notice to Indrajit Lankesh

On film-maker Indrajit Lankesh’s statement on drug menace in the Kannada film industry, the Home Minister said that the Police Department has issued a notice asking him to provide detailed information and to reveal the source of his information, which is mandatory under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act 1985. “Indrajit Lankesh has been summoned before officers in Bengaluru on Sunday. He will come and give a statement. Let us see what he has to say,” he said.

“I have already told officers not to be lenient while handling any such offence. We will keep an eye on drug abusers not just in the film industry but in all sectors,” he said.

“Based on some information, the Central anti-narcotic drug wing officers came to the State and arrested some persons involved in the making and distribution of synthetic drugs. The arrested persons include a woman. The Central officers have expressed suspected drug abuse among some film personalities and some VIPs in the State,” he said.

“They have continued their investigation and we are cooperating with them. Our CCB officers are also conducting raids,” he said.

Awareness programmes

“The Police Department will organise awareness and vigilance programmes in educational institutions, including private professional colleges. We will take action against students and managements, if they are found guilty. No one will be spared,” he said.

He said that allegations that the police were lenient towards the guilty among the rich and powerful who could exert influence on the government were not correct. “The police are doing a good job. They need to be appreciated,’’ he added.

“The police had managed to crack the Dark Net and obtained some clues about drug trafficking. The Dark Net is used by offenders for illegal activities such as arms trade and child prostitution. It is difficult to trace the routes of such transactions, but our police officers have succeeded in doing that. They have traced the origination and destination of some drug trafficking channels. They are working on arresting persons responsible for them,” he said.

Four arrested

“We have arrested four Postal Department employees for their involvement in the drug trade. There have been some instances where drugs were sent by ordinary postal services, with the connivance of some officers,” he said.

“The parcels were lying in the Postal Department for months, as no one would come to collect them. Then, some department staff, who are part of the ring, would deliver them to whoever they were meant for,” the Home Minister said.

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