More than twice as many people were arrested for consumption of drugs in 2013 as compared to 2012, reveals data compiled by the Anti Narcotics Cell (ANC) of the Mumbai Police. The spike in the number of cases registered, according to the ANC, is a result of the crackdown on drug addicts and peddlers following the gangrape at Shakti Mills, Mahalaxmi in August last year.
Of the 4,016 persons arrested in 1,330 cases of drug consumption in 2013, more than half were registered from August onwards, said Kishor Jadhav, DCP, ANC. The police booked 2,761 people in 783 cases of drug consumption in 2012.
Foreign nationals accounted for 44 of those arrests in 2013. Of these, 41 were Nigerians. One citizen each from France, Ivory Coast and Nepal were the others. In 2012, 66 foreign nationals were charged under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act. Of those, 60 were Nigerians, four were from Tanzania, and one each from Mozambique and Zambia.
The police have struggled to deal effectively with citizens from African countries working as drug peddlers in Mumbai. “We are unable to deport them as a lot of the offenders destroy their passports upon arrival in India,” said an ANC officer.
The number of cases of drug possession remained unchanged between 2012 and 2013 at 2,013. The value of seized drugs, however, registered a sharp spike in 2012 at Rs 14.76 crore. By contrast, drugs worth Rs 3.67 crore were seized in 2013. Jadhav has cited 2012 as an exception owing to a large haul of crystal amphetamine being seized.