Delhi Sees Sharp Rise as Opium Transit Hub



Delhi Police is intensifying its efforts to track down drug dealers who dump opium residue in the NCT following rampant crackdown in Punjab and Rajasthan. This is in response to a sharp 23% increase in recovery of illegal opium and 190% poppy heads in Delhi during 2015 on comparison to the previous year.

Officials in the narcotic wing under Delhi Police’s Crime Branch says that opium and Poppy heads (the seed capsule of poppy) in India are largely sourced from the licit opium cultivation zone on the Rajasthan Madhya Pradesh border and some parts of Uttar Pradesh. Earlier these were channeled directly to the rural areas of Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh without using Delhi as a transit point as chances of getting caught here were higher. Also the city with its highly urban nature rarely had any demand for the poppy heads.

With more youngsters getting addicted to chemical substances, the demand for poppy heads was declining. However it is now feared that the dealers are dumping poppy products, including poppy heads, in Delhi because of rampant crackdowns in other north Indian states, especially Rajasthan and Punjab, and supplying it to migrant laborers here and the rural areas on the city’s outskirts.

According to the officials, it is very crucial to keep a check on the drug trade as they are further processed into heroin with the help of a chemical called acetic anhydride which, being a basic component in sedatives and painkillers is not difficult to procure.