Agartala: Tripura’s lone Congress legislator Sudip Roy Barman on Monday said to win the war against drugs, the state government should constitute a high-power committee and an empowered action squad to carry out the orders of the committee.

“In issues like drugs, we have to be very careful and should abstain from looking for political interests. I am not talking about politics. My suggestions to the Chief Minister are related to the drug menace, which has now reached the school level,” he said.

Highlighting a slew of suggestions, Roy Barman said, “The Chief Minister should constitute a high-power committee comprising representatives of all political parties, health, education, police department and most importantly NGOs who are relentlessly working to save our children from getting lost in the abyss of addiction.”

This high-power committee headed by the Chief Minister, he said, will directly pass enforcement orders to an empowered group of officials.

“The state can easily form an anti-narcotic task force. Two Battalions of Tripura State Rifles could have been attached under the aegis of the empowered enforcement agency to carry out operations in troubled areas,” Roy Barman suggested.

He also urged the government to build proper treatment infrastructure for the people who are already into drugs and to develop a strong information-gathering network in every school across the state to identify the peddlers.

“It’s high time to act against the kingpins of the illicit drug trafficking nexus, otherwise, it would cost an entire generation,” he added.

Sharing data, he said the number of injectable drug users in Tripura was below 1,000 people a few years back, and now the total figure has crossed the 4,000 mark.

“We all have to understand that this is not the exact figure. Many people don’t come up for testing. A treatment facility for these people is a must. If it is possible, I would suggest for contribution from all area development fund of each MLAs for setting up a dedicated integrated rehab centre for the people already in drugs,” Roy Barman suggested.

Earlier, Chief Minister Dr Manik Saha informed the House that multi-pronged efforts had been undertaken to control the drug menace.

“In Tripura Police Academy, six new short-term courses have been introduced to make the cops more aware of the crimes and investigation methods related to psychotropic drugs and narcotic substances. Apart from that, six sniffer dogs have been trained specially to trace ganja plantations and drugs. Besides, the public prosecutors and additional public prosecutors are taken into confidence to ensure that accused persons under NDPS Act do not get bail easily,” said Dr Saha.

The Chief Minister also informed the House that the state government is considering purchasing an advanced scanner, which will be installed at the entry point of the state to keep a tab on ganja-laden vehicles.

Saha said the state has already drawn the attention of the Centre to set up a branch of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in Tripura. “The matter is under consideration of the Centre,” he added.

According to the Chief Minister, as many as 522 people had been arrested till August 2022 from January based on 399 complaints registered with the police under the NDPS Act.  

Also read | Demonic machine: Tripura Deputy Speaker wants ban on DJ systems 

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