NCB joint operation seizes 62 kg meth seized in Arabian Sea

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Photo: Special Arrangement

Photo: Special Arrangement

In a joint operation with Gujarat’s Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) and the Coast Guard, the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has seized 62 kg of methamphetamine in the Arabian Sea.

“Six persons suspected to be Pakistani citizens have been detained and the Pakistan connection is being probed,” said NCB Deputy Director-General (Ops) Gyaneshwar Singh, in a statement on Tuesday.

Preliminary findings have suggested that the final destination of the seized drug could be in and around Delhi, besides Punjab.

On March 8, the latest operation codenamed ‘Sagar Manthan-2’ was launched on a specific intelligence developed by the ATS. “In the early hours of March 12, 2024, the Indian Coast Guard successfully intercepted a foreign vessel carrying six Pakistani nationals and about 62 kg of methamphetamine,” he said. The Coast Guard had mobilised its mission-deployed maritime patrol aircraft and warship for the exercise.

This is the second maritime seizure by the NCB and the Gujarat ATS in the past three weeks, the earlier one being the largest-ever quantity seized at sea in the country. Operation Sagar Manthan-1 led to the impounding of 3,110 kg hashish, 158 kg methamphetamine and 24 kg heroin.

The primary objective of the operation was to collect actionable inputs which could lead to interdiction of ships carrying narcotics contraband. For this task, the team exchanged and gathered information from the Indian Coast Guard and other drug law enforcement agencies such as ATS Gujarat, intelligence agencies etc. The team also cultivated numerous domestic as well as international assets. Technological interventions were also deployed in generating actionable inputs.

“Further investigation is on to bust the entire international syndicate. Requisite help of foreign DLEAs (Drug Law Enforcement Agencies) will be taken. Efforts have been made by the NCB to identify and disrupt the entire networks involved in such transnational trafficking of drugs and this operation is also an outcome of such efforts. This operation is also a great example of Inter-agency cooperation and coordination. The NCB places on record the appreciation for the stellar cooperation by Indian Coast Guard and the ATS Gujarat Police for this major milestone towards achieving government’s goal of drug- free India,” Mr. Singh said.

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