High security across the city seems to be becoming increasingly bigger hindrance for drug peddlers.
The latest data from the Anti-Narcotics Cell (ANC) and the city police shows a trend of increased seizures especially during months when security was high.
In August 2010, the data shows, the quantity of drugs seized by the ANC was approximately 135kg, in comparison to 39kg seized in September 2010.
The police say, there is usually high alert in August due to the Independence Day celebrations. By September, however, the security is reduced significantly.
“When security is high we often find cases of which we didn’t have prior intelligence on. This leads to more arrests and seizures,” said an ANC official, requesting anonymity.
“The ANC works entirely on intelligence. It is impossible to check every person or vehicle that goes in and out of Mumbai. The presence of policemen makes it tougher for dealers to sell drugs,” said deputy commissioner of police Sunil Paraskar of Mumbai ANC.
The police say, December, January and August are the months when the city is on high alert. Data shows that of the 657 cases of drug peddling registered by the ANC, approximately 27% were registered in January, August and December.
“During these months it becomes easier to catch hold of a dealer in possession of drug due to tough checking. Even if we know an individual is trafficking drugs, we cannot arrest unless he’s caught with the goods,” said Paraskar.
In January 2009, the ANC seized approximately 1,045kg drugs as compared to only 45kg in February 2009. According to the ANC, narcotic drugs brought in to the city are mostly sold within Mumbai.
“The only other place where drugs may be smuggled is to Goa. The chances of smugglers getting caught within Mumbai are much higher than smaller towns. That’s why drugs being sent to Goa never go through Mumbai,” said Paraskar.
“There has been a significant rise in the number of seizures made in the city in 2010. This may point to an increased demand, however, that may be a flawed conclusion,” said an ANC official.