Haryana’s drive against drug menace short staffed with 47% sanctioned posts lying vacant in NCB

Published on Aug 12, 2022 02:49 AM IST

The Haryana State Narcotics Control Bureau (HSNCB) has been spearheading the Manohar Lal Khattar-led BJP-JJP government’s fight against drug trafficking with just 53% of its workforce, while grappling with acute staff shortage in field units

The vacant posts at the HSNCB headquarters include 21 of 67 sanctioned posts of police staff, seven posts out of 15 sanctioned posts of head constables, and nine posts of constable drivers of the 10 sanctioned posts. (HT File)
The vacant posts at the HSNCB headquarters include 21 of 67 sanctioned posts of police staff, seven posts out of 15 sanctioned posts of head constables, and nine posts of constable drivers of the 10 sanctioned posts. (HT File)
By, Chandigarh

The Haryana State Narcotics Control Bureau (HSNCB) has been spearheading the Manohar Lal Khattar-led BJP-JJP government’s fight against drug trafficking with just 53% of its workforce, while grappling with acute staff shortage in field units.

Till July 15, 380 posts were sanctioned in the HSNCB, of which 178 (47%) are vacant. The key posts lying vacant, include clerks (11), inspectors and sub-inspectors (four each), head constables (31), and constable drivers (73), as per the data released in the Vidhan Sabha. Incidentally, 11 posts of clerks of the sanctioned 13 and 44 Group-D posts out of the sanctioned 47 are vacant.

At least 84% posts of ministerial staff are also vacant at the HSNCB headquarters. There are 76 sanctioned posts of ministerial staff at the headquarters, of which 12 are filled and 64 are vacant, the data shows.

The vacant posts at the HSNCB headquarters include 21 of 67 sanctioned posts of police staff, seven posts out of 15 sanctioned posts of head constables, and nine posts of constable drivers of the 10 sanctioned posts.

The vacancy scenario across 11 field units is equally grim with HSNCB grappling with 39% staff shortage. The field units have 237 sanctioned posts, of which 93 (three inspectors, four SIs, 24 head constables, and 41 drivers) are vacant.

During the concluding sitting of the monsoon session of Haryana Vidhan Sabha on Wednesday, while the issue of rising drug menace was debated hotly, the issue of HSNCB facing staff crunch had also surfaced.

Home minister Anil Vij, while accepting that many posts are lying vacant, had assured the assembly that the HSNCB, which was set up on August 25, 2020, will not let the staff crunch come in the way of its fight against the drug menace.

The HSNCB work in tandem with the state police, district-level anti-narcotics cells and special task forces to curb the drug menace. This year till August 2, all wings of the state police have registered 2,334 cases under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, and arrested 3,209 people and recovered huge quantities of narcotics, including around 21kg heroin against the 29kg heroin seized in 2021 and 36kg heroin recovered in 2020.

State action plan

On June 26, the CM had launched the HSNCB’s state action plan to prevent and detect drug trafficking, and gather intelligence about drug addicts.

A five-tier structure from village to state-level has been designed to cover the entire population of Haryana and identify drug addicts in rural and urban areas through village-level committees called village mission teams (VMTs) and ward-level committees known as ward-mission team (WMTs).

Officials said these committees gather information about drug addicts residing in their jurisdiction and share the data with the health department, which reaches out to addicts for treatment.

To ensure proper functioning of village and ward-level teams, a cluster-level committee known as cluster mission teams (CMTs) have been set up at primary health centre-level, which covers 10 to 15 villages. CMTs will regulate, guide, assist, and provide counselling, treatment and rehabilitation to addicts identified by VMTs and WMTs. There are 6,848 villages and 22 districts in the state. Thus, 530 CMTs will be constituted throughout the state for raising awareness, identification, counselling, treatment and rehabilitation of drug-dependent persons.

A supervisory committee has also been constituted at district-level known as district mission team (DMTs) in all 22 districts of Haryana to regulate all the teams.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Pawan Sharma, based in Chandigarh, is Punjab’s Chief-of-Bureau, Hindustan Times. In the past 16 years, stints in Delhi and Himachal Pradesh including, he has done high-impact stories on Tibetan affairs, judiciary, politics and corruption in governments.

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