INDIA. Mumbai: A 39-year-old Nigerian was arrested with 70-gram Mephedrone from the Mankhurd area of northeast Mumbai and was booked under the Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act 1985, by the anti-Narcotics cell of Mumbai Police, unit VII on Monday.
The accused holding passport No A 09628545 (valid till 18 February 2021) residing at Koparkhairane in Navi Mumbai, was involved in drug peddling for the last few months. Acting on the tip of that he was to arrive to sell the Mephedrone, the police laid a trap and arrested him at Maharashtra Nagar near Sion-Panvel Highway. His search revealed that he was carrying 70-gram Mephedrone, a white colour substance with a strong odour.
He was arrested under sections 8(K), 22(K) under the NDPS Act and produced before the Metropolitan Magistrate who remanded him to police custody till January 25, 2021.
The operation was carried out under the directions of Joint Police Commissioner(crime) Milind Bharambe, Additional CP(Crime) Viresh Prabhu, DCP Akbar Pathan, ACP Siddharth Shinde by Senior Police Inspector Manish Sridhankar, PSI Sanjay Surve, and others.
In another raid, two drug peddlers, including a fire safety officer, attached to the Mumbai fire brigade, were arrested with 65 gms Mephedrone from South Mumbai by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) on Sunday.
Giving the details on Tuesday, NCB Mumbai Zonal Director Sameer Wankhede said that based on intelligence developed by the Mumbai Zonal Unit, the NCB team conducted an operation near Sir JJ Hospital in South Mumbai from where the drug peddlers- Mohmed Nazim Khan and Sandip Ganpat Chavan were arrested. Chavan is a fire safety officer.
“These drug peddlers have been active in the Southern parts of Mumbai, Parel, and adjoining areas for a long time. Further searches are going on to trace and nab the masterminds,” Wankhede said.
When contacted by the “Transcontinental Times” K V Hivrale, officiating Chief Fire Officer of Mumbai Fire Brigade did not offer any comments about the arrest of Chavan.
Mephedrone popular among youth
Mephedrone is also known as M-cat, Meow Meow, and White magic. It is a synthetic stimulant drug of amphetamine class having psychoactive characteristics. A dangerous new designer drug mephedrone has gained popularity among the youth and teens of India. Its abuse has soared to mount to an epidemic. It has psychoactive properties and is believed to bring about effects similar to the use of cocaine, amphetamine, and 3,4-methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine. It is usually used at parties.
In the meanwhile NCB Mumbai, in the last three months, has lodged 30 new cases arresting 92 people. NCB is tightening the noose around drug racketeers in Mumbai and Goa, Wankhede said. About 46 cases were registered in 2020 and various types of drugs were seized. On the occasion of New Year, NCB conducted raids in two areas of Mumbai and arrested three drug peddlers.
“In 2016, the NCB had registered 23 cases and arrested 29 drug peddlers. It registered 30 cases in 2017 and arrested 38 drug peddlers, registered 25 cases in 2018 and arrested 55 drug peddlers, filed 35 cases in 2019 and arrested 55 drug peddlers and last year, in 2020, 46 drug cases were registered and 92 drug peddlers were arrested,” Wankhede said.