Jammu and Kashmir is facing narco-terrorism and a majority of drugs being smuggled into the state are from across the Line of Control (LoC), DGP S P Vaid said on Saturday.
The DGP also sought the cooperation of people, including parents of drug addicts, to root out the menace, terming it a “very serious issue”. “We are faced with narco-terrorism. There are some elements who do not want our future generations to be physically and mentally healthy. They want to destroy the lives of our youth and make them their slaves,” he said.
The DGP claimed only 20 to 25 per cent of the drugs being smuggled into the state were from Punjab, while the rest were being pumped from across the Line of Control (LoC) and the International Border. “I feel some agencies with ill-intentions towards J&K and Ladakh are involved in it. They are doing it (drug trafficking) to fund terrorism. They want our future generations to be addicted to drugs so that they can succeed in their nefarious designs,” he said.
“It is a very serious issue… This year we had record seizure of drugs worth Rs 500 crore in the international market. In Kashmir, we seized 70 kg of pure quality heroin, while over 25 kg of the contraband was seized from Jammu,” the state’s police chief said. He said more efforts were needed to wipe out the menace from the state. “The police, as part of its efforts, is doing its best to fight the menace. I believe it is a small effort and more needs to be done. We need the support of families and the civil society,” he said.
Demanding stern punishment for drug peddlers, Vaid said judges should ignore minor technical shortcomings in investigations. The DGP also urged lawyers not to defend peddlers if they were “convinced from the heart” that the person was involved in the crime. “I am giving this example because if you do not cooperate, we cannot root out this menace. We have to remain cautious. Let us come together to fight this out,” he said, calling for coordinated efforts.
The DGP said the government had provided land to the police near Eidgah in Srinagar for a full-fledged drug de-addiction centre. “I had requested the government to provide land here as well. We also plan to send a proposal to the Ministry of Home Affairs for a full-fledged drug de-addiction centre here,” Vaid said.
He said the government was mulling to set up 10-bedded de-addiction centre in every district of Jammu and Kashmir. The DGP also said that incidents of stone-pelting during anti-terrorist operations had reduced in Kashmir and security forces were not facing “much trouble now”.