Close to 400 people have been arrested and drugs, liquor and cash worth Rs 58 crore seized in Punjab after the model code of conduct came into force even as no link has been established so far between the recovery and any political party or person.
“Total recovery in the state, which includes cash, liquor, drugs, gold and other items, goes about Rs 58 crore,” Punjab additional director general of police (ADGP) V K Bhawra said on Monday.
He said among the seizure by the agencies - BSF, NCB and the police - include 5 kg heroin, 1,800 kg poppy husk, 127 kg opium in the state and 394 persons have been arrested under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act.
Bhawra, who is also the nodal officer for the state election, said a huge quantity of seizures of contraband was also made by neighbouring states in coordination with the Punjab police.
The ADGP said Jammu and Kashmir police have seized 1,000 kg poppy husk near Lakhanpur and the supply was meant for Punjab. In addition, Rajasthan police also seized 475 kg of poppy husk.
When asked whether law enforcement agencies have been able to link the seizure of drugs, liquor and cash with any political party or person, Bhawra said police was trying to find out the source of recovery.
“The follow up at micro level has not been done...We will try to ascertain the source of the recovery be it liquor, drugs or cash. It is a long drawn process and it takes months,” he said.
Notably, in past, political parties had expressed concern over the misuse of drugs, liquor and cash to influence voters during the Punjab assembly polls.
Bhawra said a meeting of inter-state police coordination took place on Monday in which top cops and other senior police officials of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, UT Chandigarh and Jammu and Kashmir participated.
In the meeting, it was decided that there would be an effective sealing of borders with other states by putting up check posts and maintaining round-the-clock vigil to check transportation of illegal items, including drugs.
“The borders will be sealed effectively 72 hours before polls,” he said.
On the deposit of licensed weapons, Bhawra said 3.19 lakh weapons have been deposited which make up to 85 per cent of total licensed arms in the state.
He further said that 409 unlicensed weapons, including pistols, have been seized during checking of vehicles at several places in the state.