A Kashmir-based mastermind is under the scanner of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) for running a hashish racket in the city in which women are used as carriers.
The racket was busted when the NCB, acting on a tip-off, arrested two Kashmiri women commuters, who were seated in a Mumbai Central-bound long-distance train, at Borivli railway station last month.
The NCB seized good-quality hashish weighing 43.7kg from the women, who are from Srinagar. The accused Mehbooba, 35, and Mehroon, 65, were to hand over the drug consignment to local distributor Sajad, 35, who has also been arrested in the case.
Sustained interrogation of the trio led the NCB to the mastermind. “Mehbooba is the wife of the Kashmir-based mastermind, who is also wanted in cases in Jammu. We are looking for five of his accomplices in the city, including a couple. All of them are absconding,” said an NCB officer.
“At times, drugs were brought to the city in trucks, while women were bringing them into the city on trains,” said the officer.
To dodge enforcement agencies, drug peddlers in the city visit places close to Mumbai such as Jalgaon and Nashik. “At times, the exchange occurs at these places where carriers from Kashmir meet local drug peddlers,” said the officer.
Kashmiri hashish is much in demand in the city because of its purity. Investigations revealed the seized hashish in the recent arrests is of a good quality that would cost Rs3,000 to Rs4,000 for every 10 grams. “The street value is much higher because it is sold after adulteration,” said the officer.
Kumar Sanjay Jha, NCB zonal director, Mumbai and Goa region, said the operation is part of the ongoing process to clamp down on hashish. Around 90kg of hashish has been seized so far this year.