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Cops involved in drug trade will be dismissed, smugglers' property attached: Punjab CM

Updated on: 18 June,2024 06:20 PM IST  |  Chandigarh

Mann said the police department would see reforms soon

Cops involved in drug trade will be dismissed, smugglers' property attached: Punjab CM

Bhagwant Mann. File Pic/AAP

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Cops involved in drug trade will be dismissed, smugglers' property attached: Punjab CM

Any police official found involved in drug trade would be dismissed from service and the property of traffickers attached, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann said on Tuesday while announcing tough steps to break the "nexus" between low-rank police officials and smugglers.

Mann also announced the transfer of police officials at lower levels on a mass scale across the state and added that 10,000 police personnel would be recruited to strengthen the department.

Interacting with reporters after a meeting with the senior superintendents of police (SSPs) here, Mann said the police department would see reforms soon.

During the just-concluded Lok Sabha elections, a huge quantity of drugs and cash were seized in Punjab, the chief minister said.

"We got clues from where those came and what their destinations were. We have the details," he said.

Mann said the day the model code of conduct for the Lok Sabha polls ended, he called the director general of police and told him to take further action against the drug menace.

The chief minister said police officers have been asked to transform the war against drugs into a mass movement.

There have been allegations that officials have been working at the same police station for over 10 years, he said, adding that somewhere or the other "favouritism" is going on.

Suggesting there was a "nexus" between lower rank police officials and drug peddlers, the chief minister asked the state police chief to transfer officials posted at police stations immediately.

"If any police official is found involved in the sale of drugs, it will be seen as a sin and strict action will be taken. He will be dismissed. Later, he will be questioned to find out how long this was going on," Mann said.

The chief minister further said if any drug smuggler is caught, then his property will be attached. "It will be done within a week of him getting caught."

Director General of Police Gaurav Yadav said more than 10,000 personnel from the constable level have been transferred. "A massive administrative reshuffle was being undertaken," he said.

The Punjab police chief said a station house officer (SHO) has the power to freeze the property of a drug smuggler under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act.

"In the last two years, we have frozen property worth Rs 200 crore in 459 cases," he said.

Yadav said directions have been issued to identify the point of sale of drugs in "mohallas" and villages. The special task force and intelligence wing have prepared a list of 9,000 street-level peddlers in the state and immediate action will be taken against them, he said.

The police chief also said 750 drug hotspots have been identified in the state.

To further strengthen the police force, Chief Minister Mann said 10,000 police personnel will be recruited. "If we talk about the strength of police personnel, it was 80,000-81,000 in 2002 and today also the number is the same," he said.

On action against gangsters, he said strict action was being taken.

Drones from across the border are bringing pistols, cash and narcotics, the chief minister said and pointed out that "gangsters, smugglers and terrorists have come together".

Mann said his government has provided new vehicles and the best technology to Punjab Police personnel.

Pointing out that the state government has adopted a zero-tolerance policy against corruption and drugs, he said the state government would not spare any person involved in heinous crimes, however affluent he might be.

"The state government cannot sit idle and watch people selling drugs and committing genocide of our future generations," the chief minister said.

Punjab is fighting the nation's war against the drug menace, he said and vowed that no stone would be left unturned to attain victory.

He further said police officers have also been asked to respect the people who visit police stations for their routine work and added that SSPs would be personally held accountable for undue harassment of the public.

Replying to a question, Mann lashed out at Punjab BJP chief Sunil Jakhar, saying he is "desperate and frustrated" over not getting a share of power and issuing baseless statements against the AAP government in the state.

Such leaders are bothered only about their own vested interests, the chief minister said while targeting Jakhar.

This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

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