The arrest of a 32-year-old drug peddler in the Malwani area of Malad (West) late last month has helped police bust a methamphetamine (meth) racket, in which most of the buyers are allegedly employees of call centres in the area, a hub for BPOs.
A police officer said that during interrogation of the accused, it was learnt that youngsters working in call centres commonly use Meth as it helps them stay awake during the night — most call centre employees are assigned night shifts.
The drug costs around Rs 5,500 a gram. Over the past month, Malad and Malwani police officers have carried out six raids in the area, arresting peddlers and consumers active in supplying drugs. While meth were seized in five of the raids, the police recovered another recreational drug – Mephedrone, or Meph – in one raid.
“The drug doesn’t just give users a high but also helps them overcome sleep and kills appetite. The arrested peddlers have been supplying Meth for a long time in the area. Most call centre employees who consume meth knew the peddlers and were regular customers,” said a police officer, requesting anonymity.
Police conduct round-the-clock patrolling at the Mindspace office complex which houses several call centres. To escape being spotted by the police, most addicts visit nearby Malwani, located 3-4km away and dotted with slums, thus making it difficult for police to keep a close watch.
“Most peddlers and buyers prefer to buy and sell drugs in the slums of Malwani where interior by-lanes are narrow and crowded,” Prakash Patil, senior inspector at Malwani police station.
Patil said a campaign was underway to crackdown on the sale of Meth to call centres employees and youngsters in the Malwani area.
Police sources said the revelations thus far were only the tip of the iceberg and they were actively working towards breaking the nexus between drug peddlers and buyers.