Punjab police seize opium smuggled from Jharkhand, heroin from Pakistan

Investigation resulted in the discovery of 42 bank accounts, being used by the organised opium syndicate.
Opium seized from Jharkhand
Opium seized from Jharkhand(Special Arrangement)

CHANDIGARH: In one of the biggest opium seizures of a decade, Punjab Police has busted an inter-state opium smuggling syndicate operating from Jharkhand by arresting two big drug smugglers and recovering 66kg opium concealed in a specially designed and fabricated compartments fitted underneath their Maruti Swift car.

Meanwhile, state police have also busted two separate cross-border drug smuggling cartels being operated by Pakistan-based smugglers with the arrest of three drug traffickers after recovering 9.2 kg of heroin from their possession.

Director General of Police, Punjab Gaurav Yadav said that those arrested have been identified as Sukhyad Singh alias Yad of Dalmir Khera village and Jagraj Singh of Bhamma Singh Wala village in Ferozepur. Apart from recovering big haul of opium, police teams have also recovered Rs 40,000 drug money, and 400 grams gold from their possession, besides, impounding their vehicle and a tractor.

Yadav said that further financial investigation and meticulous follow-up in this case has resulted in the discovery of 42 bank accounts, which were being used for financial transactions by the organised opium syndicate. “Following a financial trail in less than 24 hours, the Fazilka Police freezed all the 42 bank accounts with Rs 1.86 crore of drug proceeds,” he said.

The DGP said that the Fazilka Police has also initiated the process of property forfeiture under 68F of the NDPS act. Further investigations are on to trace the forward and backward linkages, he added.

Sharing operation details, Senior Superintendent of Police Fazilka Dr Pragya Jain said that they had received reliable inputs about the accused persons that they are habitual of transporting opium from Jharkhand and would be returning from Jharkhand to Dalmir Khera via Sri Ganganagar in their Swift car carrying a substantial quantity of opium.

Acting swiftly on the inputs, a strategic Nakabandi was established by SHO Police Station Khuian Sarvar Raman Kumar along with police on the Abohar-Ganganagar road at the Bus Stand village Sappan Wali under the supervision of DSP Abohar Arun Mundan. They successfully intercepted the specified vehicle, she said.

Opium seized from Jharkhand
Two Jharkhand natives arrested with 10 kg opium

She said that despite an attempt by the driver to flee, the police has successfully apprehended both the accused persons and recovered 66kg of opium and Rs 40,000 drug money from their possession. During the hot chase, one police personnel also sustained injuries, she added.

Jain said that the police have also identified the big fish behind this syndicate and the latter has been smuggling for over two decades and facing at least nine criminal cases pertaining to attempt to murder, theft, under excise act and NDPS act. “We have nominated him in the FIR and raids are being conducted to nab him,” she said.

A case has been registered under sections 18 (Punishment for contravention in relation to opium poppy and opium), 27A (Whoever indulges in financing or harbouring Drug peddlers) and 29 (punishment for abetment and criminal conspiracy) of the NDPS Act at Police Station Khuian Sarwar.

Cross-border drug cartels busted

Punjab Police have also busted two separate cross-border drug smuggling cartels being operated by Pakistan-based smugglers with the arrest of three drug traffickers and recovering 9.2Kg heroin (8.2Kg+1Kg) from their possession.

Heroin seized from Pakistan
Heroin seized from Pakistan(Special Arrangement)

DGP Yadav said that following reliable inputs, police from Police Station Chheharta apprehended two drug smugglers from area of Shiva Enclave in the Rajasansi area and recovered 8.2kg heroin from their possession. Those arrested have been identified as Bachitar Singh of village Jathaul in Amritsar and Sunny of Guru ki Wadali in Chheharta. Accused Bachitar Singh was a proclaimed offender in a murder case of PS Gharinda since 2021.

Apart from recovering 8.2 kg heroin, police have also recovered Rs 95,000 drug money and one electronic weighing machine, besides impounding their Swift car. A case has been registered under sections 21-C and 23/29 of the NDPS Act at Police Station Chheharta in Amritsar.

In other case, Yadav said that acting on intel inputs, police from Police Station Ranjit Avenue laid a Nakabandi at Ranjit Avenue Bypass and has arrested Amandeep Singh of village Ranian, Lopoke in Amritsar and recovered 1kg heroin from his possession. Police have also impounded his Volkswagen Vento car, in which he was travelling, he added.

In this regard, a case has been registered under section 21-C of the NDPS Act at Police Station Ranjit Avenue in Amritsar.

Sharing more details, Commissioner of Police Amritsar Ranjit Singh Dhillon said that as per preliminary investigations, the accused persons were directly in touch with Pakistan-based smugglers, who were supplying drugs across the state after smuggling from Pakistan via drones.

Opium seized from Jharkhand
Drone, packet of heroin seized near India-Pakistan border in Punjab

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