An organised cell is being put together at the state level consisting of police, excise, revenue, Narcotics Control Bureau, Directorate of Revenue Intelligence and railway officials to curb the growing issue of ganja. But the latest addition to the unit will be police dogs wherein a police dog squad would be formed to help sniff out ganja being smuggled through trains and various other methods.
DGP N Sambasiva Rao confirmed the same after a workshop was held in the city on ganja smuggling and other drugs related issues. The objective of the workshop was to create awareness in colleges, hostels and more and to appeal them to stay away from drug abuse. The dogs for the police dog squad will be brought in from abroad if necessary to deal with the ganja and narcotics issue that is on a rise. The police are reportedly ready to spend any amount necessary to curb the growing rise and prevent drug abuse.
Visakhapatnam accounts for 80% of the ganja cultivation and 15% in East Godavari and 5% in the remaining districts. The excise, police and revenue departments had destroyed 25,000 acres of cultivated ganja last year and yet there seems to be more to destroy. The police department will be taking the help of Advanced Data Processing Research Institute (ADRIN) from Hyderabad to identify the areas.
The excise department had seized 70,000 KG of ganja last year and booked 1600 cases. The year before there was 45,000 KG of ganja seized and 900 cases were booked. The DGP admitted there is a problem wherein police and excise department officials were working hand in hand with these smugglers. But he did promise stern action against the same, including dismissal from service.