Four policemen posted at Delhi’s Jahangirpuri police station were suspended after they allegedly misreported the quantity of marijuana seized from a local drug peddler. Approximately 160 kg of marijuana was seized, however, the policemen allegedly reported only 1 kg of contraband and sold the rest. The peddler was also let off after the personnel allegedly took a bribe from him.
Police said a raid was conducted by a team on September 11 from Jahangirpuri police station during which approximately 160 kgs of marijuana was seized. “But the suspected peddler was later let off after the personnel allegedly took a bribe from him,” a senior police officer said.
The suspended policemen allegedly reported only 1 kg of contraband and sold the rest.
The incident comes in the wake of growing debate and investigation in the use of marijuana and its byproducts by Indian celebrities. The untimely and tragic death of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput has led an investigation into a possible “drug angle” in the case by the Narcotics Control Bureau. Bollywood actor Rhea Chakraborty has been arrested in connection with the case after the NCB found guilty of allegedly procuring cannabis for Rajput. Now, several leading actresses such as Deepika Padukone, Shraddha Kapoor and Sara Ali Khan are being questioned by the NCB.
The incident has opened up a Pandora’s Box in Bollywood, with many calling for a second look at the criminalization of cannabis.
In 1985, India passed the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act in 1985 which criminalised cannabis in the form of buds (ganja) or resin (charas) while allowing the sale of ‘bhang’ – a byproduct of cannabis that is still heavily consumed on festivals like Holi and Shivratri. The sale and regulation of the latter were left up to states to decide.
According to a report in Hindustan Times, the peddler – named Anil – had procured the weed from Odisha. It also turned out that the cops had reported only 1 kg of the weed while allegedly selling off the rest of the 159 kg. The four cops have since been suspended for the act.
The crime branch of Delhi Police on Friday arrested two persons with 44 kg of ganja worth around Rs. 44 lakh to be supplied in Delhi and NCR.
The arrested persons have been identified as Gajender Rai, 26, and Vinod Kumar Gadaria, 35. The arrests, a senior police officer said, were made after a team led by inspector Sanjay Gade received information that the accused would come to Delhi from Bihar with a consignment of drugs. Accordingly, a trap was laid near Nigambodh Ghat in north Delhi and the two were arrested.
“The recovered ganja was concealed in a cavity designed in the shape of an oil tank between two wheels of the vehicle. Rai, a native of Vaishali district in Bihar, disclosed that he used to deliver ganja to his contact, Sonu, in Mangolpuri. Gadaria hails from Kanpur and is the owner of the seized vehicle,” the senior officer added.
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