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Hold your breath! Saliva analyser to catch drug abusers on its way

Have you experienced those scary moments inside a bus, with a normal-looking man behind the wheel going rash and wayward at times.

Published: 28th May 2019 03:01 AM  |   Last Updated: 28th May 2019 03:01 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

KOCHI:  Have you experienced those scary moments inside a bus, with a normal-looking man behind the wheel going rash and wayward at times. At least some you might have doubted he has consumed drugs. And also that he might get away with it unlike alcohol as the police too are helpless without a device to catch them. That situation should end soon.

The state police are set to catch drug abusers, both in private and public places, by launching a test kit, which will analyse one’s saliva and detect whether he/she has taken any type of narcotic. The plan is to purchase 50 devices and introduce them in five city police stations where drug abuse is high. The kit is similar to a breath analyser, which is used to catch drunk drivers. It can identify heroin, marijuana, cocaine and a series of prescription drugs.

The government informed the Kerala High Court about the decision to procure the kit called Abon, which is presently used by the Vadodara police, on a suo motu case initiated on the basis of a letter highlighting the alarming increase in drug abuses and related incidents in the state. 

Kit to help cops verify drug users in minutes

The letter had stated there was no device available in the state to ascertain exactly whether a person had consumed drug or the level of intoxication. Senior Government Pleader Suman Chakravarthy said if the pilot project turns successful, more kits would be brought in. The state has taken the decision after discussing with the Vadodara police, who are presently using 80 kits. They have proved 48 Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances cases with these machines.

The kit helps the police ascertain within minutes if a person has consumed drugs by conducting saliva and urine tests. Ten kits each will be given to five district police stations including Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi and Kozhikode. The kit will be handled by the District Anti-Narcotic Special Action Force, headed by the district police chiefs. An officer not below the rank of DySP will be designated as its district team leader.
The state police are also planning training programmes for the police force with a view to equip them in dealing with drug offenders, who are having international connections and sophisticated weapons.

WHAT’S IN THE KIT
The kit is similar to a breath analyser, which is used to catch drunk drivers. Through urine and saliva tests, it helps the police ascertain within minutes if a person has consumed drugs. The plan is to purchase 50 devices and introduce them to 5 city stations. The state has taken the decision to buy the kits after discussing with the Vadodara police

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