‘Cannabis seizure indicates rampant sale and consumption on campuses in city’

As many as 20 persons have been arrested so far and cannabis worth about ₹50 lakh has been seized by the police in the last 10 days

January 14, 2023 11:06 pm | Updated 11:06 pm IST - MANGALURU

The city police seized 100 kg of cannabis in the last ten days of 2023 in Mangaluru.

The city police seized 100 kg of cannabis in the last ten days of 2023 in Mangaluru. | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

The recent arrests by the city police of 20 persons, including 13 from medical fraternity, has brought to the fore the issue of peddling and consumption of cannabis and other drugs on the campuses of institutions in the city.

As many as 20 persons have been arrested so far and cannabis worth about ₹50 lakh has been seized by the city police in the last 10 days. Among the 13 from the medical fraternity arrested so far include Neel Kishorilal Ramji Shah, a UK citizen of Indian origin and a dental student in a city college.

“The incident has only shown a miniscule part of the sale and consumption of cannabis and other drugs on campuses in Mangaluru,” said G. Shreekumar Menon, former Director-General of National Academy of Customs, Excise and Narcotics. During his stint as Registrar of Yenopoya (Deemed to be University), Mr. Menon had conducted many drug awareness programmes in the city.

Mr. Menon said students, more so from medial other professional courses, are getting addicted not just to cannabis but also to synthetic drugs. “While its easier to detect consumption of cannabis, it’s difficult to detect those who have consumed expensive synthetic drugs,” he said.

An activist, who is involved in drug awareness programmes, said an effective way to check drugs consumption is conducting regular tests of students. “Though this has been suggested to institutions, the same is not being carried out by managements because of fear of losing out on admission of students,” he said.

The officer overlooking the investigation of the case said the city police is going deep into the racket to trace other persons involved in the supply of drugs to medical and other students. “We are building a water tight case against the arrested persons,” the officer said, and added the accused have been booked under non-bailable Section 20 (A) and other provisions of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985. All the 13 from the medical fraternity, except a medical student who is permitted to attend the ongoing exams, have been remanded to Mangaluru District Prison till January 20, he said.

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