Drug abuse increases in Kerala; contraband worth Rs 650 cr seized in 2018
Poinachi (Kasaragod): Records of the Excise Department show that smuggling of drugs has increased in the state tremendously. Banned drugs worth Rs 650 crores were seized in 2018. The amount was Rs 200 crore in 2016 and Rs 300 crore in 2017. The statistics indicates that the use of drugs is increasing in the state.
However, the sale of drugs to children near school and college premises has declined comparing to 2017. The number of cases registered in 2016 was 2,404 and it had raised to 3,067 in 2017. However, the tight surveillance has remarkably reduced the number to 2,474 in 2018.
Excise department has registered 7,573 cases under Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act in 2018 and arrested 7,802 persons. Most number of arrests were recorded in Ernakulam district; where 948 people were arrested in 922 cases.
In the last Christmas-New Year festival season, 1,736.025 litres of illicit liquor was seized and cases were registered against 990 persons.
Preference for imported liquor
Demand for imported liquor has increased in comparison to Indian-made foreign liquor. The beverages corporation began the sale of imported liquor on August 18, 2018. Currently, 31 brands of five distributers are sold in the state. Statistics of five months, from August to December 31st, shows that imported liquor worth Rs 12.41 crore has been sold.