Visakhapatnam: As many as 35 history-sheeters involved in cannabis and drugs smuggling were arrested by the Visakhapatnam police, using ‘Anti-Gunda Squad’ and ‘Anti Narcotic Squad’, said police on Saturday.
The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act cases were booked against them. Further investigation has been launched.
Visakhapatnam City Police Commissioner Ch Srikanth told ANI, “thirty-five rowdy-sheeters (history-sheeters) have been arrested, who were involved in cannabis smuggling and illegal activities in Visakhapatnam city. Accused are mostly from Northern India, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala.”
The Commissioner informed that the ‘Anti-Gunda squad’ and ‘Anti-Narcotics squad’ have been formed with 10 members each to look into drug peddling and activities of rowdies respectively.
Srikanth stated that cannabis is being smuggled from the United Visakhapatnam agency and Odisha state.
“Our Anti Narcotic team and special enforcement bureau nabbed huge quantities of cannabis. We have come to know that synthetic drugs are also being imported from Hyderabad, Banglore, Goa and other states to the city. Our teams have arrested peddlers in Visakhapatnam, most of whom are directly involved in extortion and settlements despite the police keeping a vigilant eye on them. We won’t tolerate any such kind of illegal activities within the city commissionerate limits,” the Commissioner said.
“We have been conducting Marpu (change) de-addiction program, which is getting good responses. If a youth is going into addiction at an early stage, they should come to the counselling centre. Our police are working with NGOs in the Marpu program,” Srikanth further added.
Commissioner Ch Srikanth directed the squad to employ informers in the city to gather information regarding the ganja trade, money extortion, and other illicit activities.
In the wake of this situation, the commissioner has also decided to dedicate more efforts to taking down the accused persons in such crimes.
The commissioner has directed officials and instructed authorities to thoroughly track down their network and investigate every accused and suspect.
As per the police, the Anti-Gunda Squad will be headed by the Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Govinda Rao, Special Branch, who will be guiding two other sub-inspectors.
The Anti-Gunda Squad will closely work with local police stations to gather information about any suspects in murder cases, attempted murders, and extortion in Vizag.