ADRIN images to aid fight against hemp cultivation
With ADRIN data, the State Government is hopeful of eliminating more crop.
BHUBANESWAR: Odisha Government’s drive against cannabis has got a shot in the arm with the Hyderabad-based Advanced Data Processing Research Institute (ADRIN) generating satellite imagery of the cultivation last year in nine districts.
The topo sheets of the data were handed over to Odisha Space Application Centre (ORSAC) which has prepared village-wise data for the districts. Chief Secretary AP Padhi, on Thursday, directed that a physical verification of the data be conducted by District Police and Excise Department so as to arrive at the exact locations.
The Crime Branch of Odisha Police, which is the nodal agency, will prepare the strategy for destruction of hemp plants basing on the coordinates generated after physical verification. Although, this year hemp cultivation is unlikely to be at the exact spot as captured by ADRIN, an arm of ISRO, physical verification would ensure the pin-pointed location of this year’s crop. The ISRO agency uses spectra signature to generate the landscapes.
Last year, the CB-led drive had led to destruction of hemp plantations over 3,600 acre in the State. Many of these pockets are in Naxal-hit areas and inaccessible. With ADRIN data, the State Government is hopeful of eliminating more crop.
“The districts will be given a deadline to complete field verification so that the annual plan for destruction can be chalked out in consultation with SPs and Excise Superintendents at pin-pointed locations using the coordinates later this year,” said Special DG, Crime Bijay Sharma, when contacted.
At a high-level meeting on the day, the Government also took stock of the progress of creation of centralised godowns in districts for storage all cannabis seized during smuggling as the Supreme Court guidelines. Since different agencies make the seizure, the contraband are kept at different places but the real problem is that of manipulation of the stock. In many districts, land acquisition has started whereas in some tendering process has begun for the godowns.
Similarly, it was also decided that the seizures must be destroyed pending trial and disposal since in the garb of theft, the seized items are pilfered. The Drug Disposal Committees in each distruct, headed by SP, have been asked to meet regularly and pass order for disposal of the stock. The Collectors and SPs have also been asked to indicate budgets for undertaking the intelligence collection and destruction drives.