‘Southern Maharashtra transit point for Goa drugs’June 27th, 2011 - 3:59 pm ICT by IANS
Panaji, June 27 (IANS) Southern coastal Maharashtra has emerged as a major transit point for drugs from Himachal Pradesh and other parts of north India to be smuggled into Goa, a Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) official said Monday.
Speaking to IANS on the sidelines of a drug awareness programme launched by the Goa Police here, NCB Superintendent of Police Ashok Thakker underlined the need for additional vigilance in Sindhudurg, a coastal district of south Maharashtra, where drugs were being offloaded into locally registered vehicles and then ferried into Goa.
“Vigilance is less there and it is an evolving place. It is has emerged as a transit point for bringing drugs into Goa,” Thakker said.
In face of pollution and over-populated beaches in Goa, the relatively serene beaches in south Maharashtra have already started giving their neighbouring counterparts a reason to worry as far as tourism is concerned.
Long and secluded beach stretches at Tarkarli and Malvan villages, some 80 km from here, have started attracting foreign tourists.
But according to Thakker, the area is the gateway to drugs in Goa, as a recent raid in May showed.
“A vehicle with a Himachal Pradesh registration is conspicuous in Goa. But no one will even see a vehicle with Maharashtra registration twice, because they are abundant here, which is why drugs are brought in Himachali vehicles and then transferred to local vehicles in Maharashtra and then brought into Goa,” Thakker said.
He added that a recent raid near Sawantwadi in Sindhudurg, located on the Goa border, had yielded nearly 3.5 kg of Malana cream, a top variant of hashish grown in the Malana village of Himachal Pradesh.
Goa over the years has evolved as a drugs and sex tourism destination, attracting both domestic and foreign travellers.
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