Over 200 kg charas missing from Goa police warehouse

April 5th, 2010 - 3:47 pm ICT by IANS  

Panaji, April 5 (IANS) More than 200 kg of charas (hashish), worth Rs.2 crore, is missing from a highly-protected warehouse at the Goa police headquarters, sources said.
Crime Branch officials stumbled upon the revelation while auditing the stock of drugs stored inside the ‘muddemal’ (material evidence) warehouse of the anti-narcotics cell (ANC) following the arrest of five police officials last month for their links with the narcotics mafia.

“We are at the moment auditing the stock of charas and as of today, 200 kg (charas) is missing. We are yet to check cocaine, ganja (marijuana) and other synthetic drugs stored in the warehouse,” a senior crime branch official told IANS, on condition of anonymity.

All drugs seized during anti-narcotics raids are transferred to the ANC warehouse, where they are stored. According to regulations, the drugs are then supposed to be destroyed at regular intervals after a proper check by the drug destruction committee (DDC), which is chaired by the director general of police (DGP).

The official told IANS that the audit also revealed that drugs, which were supposed to have been destroyed when the DDC last met in 2001 under the chairmanship of the then DGP Gurucharan Singh Sandhu, were still found in the warehouse.

“Several sealed packets of the drugs, which were supposed to have been publicly destroyed, were found open and some with the seals tampered with,” the official said.

Speaking to IANS Monday, Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Ravinder Singh Yadav confirmed that there was an audit going on but refused to comment on the missing stock of charas.

“The Crime Branch officials have been inspecting the warehouse for the last several days. They will be submitting a report to me soon,” Yadav said.

The audit was necessitated following the arrest of five policemen, including an inspector, Ashish Shirodkar, formerly attached to the ANC, after a spycam video surfaced on the internet, showing an Israeli drug dealer, Yaniv Benain alias Atala, speaking of how Shirodkar would steal drugs from judicial custody and sell it to him.

Atala had also said that several policemen attached to the ANC were on his payroll.

Goa, a popular tourist destination in Western India, is also a major narco-tourism destination.

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