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Social media new tool for illegal drug trade

social-media Updated: Feb 29, 2012 12:21 IST

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Social media is the new tool for traffickers to smuggle drugs and narcotics globally, the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) on Tuesday said while seeking effective steps to check its misuse.

"Illegal Internet pharmacy is very new emerging trend and it is very infinite," Director General of NCB OPS Malik told PTI.

He said the trend was noticed by the enforcement agency in past years and is currently in vogue as number of such "illegal internet pharmacies" are being run by people.

"It is very difficult to catch people or consignment if they are sending through internet. We can only check with the information. We come to know about illegal internet pharmacy when we catch them (people involved in it)," Malik said, declining to disclose details of modus operandi of online traffickers.

He said that most of such online sellers are using social media for exchange of information.

The NCB has caught certain pharmacists and doctors from across the country for allegedly operating online illegal pharmacy in recent times.

Malik refused to give names of social networking websites which were being used by traffickers. However, he maintained that NCB was catching "people on the basis of intelligence".

The NCB has also taken private couriers under its scanner for smuggling banned substances both inside and outside the country.

"We have caught 152 parcels in India. Globally, 29 parcels were traced to India," Malik said, adding that it was due to the consumption of drugs "which is going up in the country".

The parcels were carrying banned narcotics including heroin.