‘Desi’ MDMA gives excise officials more headache

The enforcement agencies have a tough task on hand as synthetic drug MDMA is now easily available in the state, with it being manufactured in India too.

Published: 26th August 2022 06:51 AM  |   Last Updated: 26th August 2022 06:51 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

KOCHI: The enforcement agencies have a tough task on hand as synthetic drug MDMA is now easily available in the state, with it being manufactured in India too. Of late, there has been a rise in cases related to MDMA seizures in Kochi, and excise officials fear the drug abuse will further increase as its price has also come down.

In 2017, only 94g of MDMA were seized in Ernakulam district, while the quantity increased to 6.58kg last year and 1.98kg by June this year. “Earlier, MDMA used to be smuggled to India from abroad through international courier parcels. As it is a chemical drug, manufacturing it here was not easy. However, the situation has changed and now, it is being manufactured in places like Bengaluru and Goa,” said B Tenymon, Assistant Excise Commissioner.

The Kochi police on Wednesday arrested a Nigerian, who was the kingpin of a racket that smuggled MDMA in large quantities to Kochi from Bengaluru. Police suspect that Okafor Eze Emmanuel, 36, was also into MDMA production. “Increase in MDMA seizures in the state reveals that there is a great demand for the party drug. As the party drug is now locally produced in Bengaluru and Goa, its price also has come down. Several foreigners, who are experts in making MDMA and LSD, were arrested in other parts of the country. As these drugs are produced in India itself, their availability has also increased. This is an alarming trend now,” said an officer.

One gram of MDMA now is sold for `4,000 to `7,000. Last week, excise officials arrested a transgender person who was into drug peddling in Kochi. The accused used to procure MDMA for `2,000 and sell it in Kochi for `5,000 to `7,000 per gram. Possession of even a small quantity of MDMA can attract rigorous imprisonment of up to 10 years. “Unlike ganja, drugs like MDMA and LSD can be easily smuggled. They can be easily concealed to avoid detection by enforcement agencies. For peddlers, selling MDMA and LSD are more profitable than ganja,” said an excise officer said.

India Matters


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