By Raju Vernekar
Mumbai, Sept 22:
A container having more than 20 tonnes (approximately 345 kgs) of Licorice coated with heroin worth Rs 1725 crore was seized by a team of Delhi Special police from the Jawaharlal Nehru Port (Nhava Sheva Port), near Navi Mumbai on Wednesday.
While JNPT sources confirmed the seizure. the Special Commissioner of Police (CP), Delhi, Hargobinder Singh Dhaliwal in a tweet said that further investigation is on and the drug smuggling seems to be a part of the larger Narco terror network.
The drug haul came exactly a year after the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) made the largest contraband seizure in the country by catching a consignment weighing 3,000 kgs of drugs, worth Rs 21,000 crore at Mundra port in Gujarat in September last year. The DRI had seized the heroin, concealed in a consignment of semi-processed talc stone, between September 17 and September 19, 2021, at Container Freight Station of Mundra Port. It was brought to India from Dubai via Afghanistan. Licorice is a herb that grows in parts of Europe and Asia.
Wednesday’s seizure by the Delhi police was based on the information provided by two Afghan nationals already in Delhi police custody, that the heroin was lying in a container at Nhava Sheva. The Afghan Nationals- Mustafa Stanikza (23) and Rahimullah Rahim (44) were arrested on September 06 by the Delhi police and 312.5 kg methamphetamine and 10 kg high purity heroin worth Rs.1200 crore were recovered from them. They were apprehended from Meethapur Road, near Kalindi Kunj Metro Station in New Delhi.
They were apprehended after Delhi police got information about a huge consignment of a known drug lord operating from overseas that would be transiting Delhi. It was the highest-ever seizure of high-quality party drug Methamphetamine, totaling 312.5 kg, apart from 10 Kg of Afghan-origin Heroin.