List was prepared by excise due to rising narcotics-related cases | At 11, Kasaragod has lowest number of offenders
KOCHI: Close on the heels of the police department releasing a ‘goonda’ list, the excise department has come out with a database of frequent drug peddlers in the state. The list, with the names of 2,434 people, was prepared due to rising Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) cases in Kerala. The department has initiated stringent action, including imposing preventive detention, against people involved in narcotic cases multiple times.
Interestingly, Kannur topped the list with 412 offenders, followed by Ernakulam district with 376 people. Similarly, the database includes 316 names from Palakkad, 302 from Thrissur, 161 from Idukki, 155 from Alappuzha, 151 from Kottayam, 130 from Malappuram, 117 from Thiruvananthapuram, 109 from Kozhikode, 70 from Wayanad and 62 each from Kollam and Pathanamthitta.
Kasaragod saw the lowest number of offenders at 11.“People booked in NDPS cases on multiple occasions have been added to the database. These offenders will be under our surveillance to prevent them from engaging in further drug peddling activities.
We will also obtain a written agreement from those arrested in NDPS cases and released from jail to ensure they do not engage in any drug peddling activities. We have also sent a proposal to the home department to invoke Prevention of Illicit Traffic (OIT) in the NDPS Act that enables to put people involved in multiple drug cases under preventive detention,” said a senior excise official.
Meanwhile, the number of NDPS cases registered by the excise department in the state increased in 2022 compared to 2020 and 2021. A total of 6,116 NDPS cases were registered by the excise in the state compared to 3,922 in 2021 and 3,667 in 2020. The highest number of NDPS cases registered in Kerala was in 2018 at 7,573.
Similarly, Ernakulam district has seen a sharp rise in NDPS cases in 2022. As many as 804 narcotic cases were registered by the excise in Ernakulam last year compared to 540 in 2021. What concerns the excise department in Ernakulam is the increase in cases related to the peddling of MDMA. The agency seized 2.31 kg of the drugs last year.