The district (rural) police on Sunday busted a narcotics smuggling gang and arrested five members from whom 4,025kg of poppy husk was seized.
A canter truck and two cars were also recovered by the police. Acting on a tip-off that some drug peddlers were bringing a huge quantity of poppy husk from Ferozepur into the district, a special team headed by superintendent of police (detective) Rajinder Singh laid a trap in Kartapur area, said senior superintendent of police Yurinder Singh.
"On Saturday, a mini truck was spotted in a deserted area in a field, where bags of poppy husk were being shifted to two cars," Yurinder said. "When smugglers spotted the police, they tried to flee, but five of them were nabbed. The others, however, escaped."
Balkar Chand, Lakhwinder Singh alias Lakha (both residents of Shahkot), Joginder Singh, Banak Singh alias Sonuy (both from Ludhiana) and Lakhwinder Singh, a resident of Ferozepur, were arrested.
"During a preliminary interrogation, the accused confessed that they used to bring consignments of poppy husk from a key smuggler, Anwar Khan, residing in Kishangarh district of Rajasthan," Yurinder said. "The poppy husk was hidden in bags of garlic."
"Efforts are to identify the accused, who have absconded, as well as the conduits of the gang in Rajasthan," he said.
Meanwhile, the SSP said, so far, the rural police had registered 315 cases under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act and arrested 432 persons. The amounts of contraband seized are: 11.2kg of heroin, 1.5kg of cocaine, 487kg of opium, 1.3kg of smack and 100kg of Ice (party drug).