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India is party to 26 bilateral pacts to fight drug trafficking

Topics Covered: Security challenges and their management in border areas; linkages of organized crime with terrorism.

India is party to 26 bilateral pacts to fight drug trafficking:


Context:

As per the information given by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), India has signed 26 bilateral pacts, 15 memoranda of understanding and two agreements on security cooperation with different countries for combating illicit trafficking of narcotic, drugs and psychotropic substances, besides chemical precursors.

 

International organisations with which the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) coordinated include:

  1. The SAARC Drug Offences Monitoring Desk.
  2. BRICS Colombo Plan.
  3. ASEAN Senior Officials on Drug Matters (ASOD).
  4. Bay of Bengal Initiative For Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Co-Operation (BIMSTEC).
  5. United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
  6. The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB).

 

Domestic measures:

  1. For coordination among various Central and State agencies, the Narco Coordination Centre (NCORD) mechanism was set up by the MHA in year 2016.
  2. A Joint Coordination Committee with the NCB Director General as its chairman was set up on July 19, 2019, to monitor the investigation into cases involving large seizures.
  3. For digitisation of pan-India drug seizure data, the MHA has launched an e-portal called ‘SIMS’ (Seizure Information Management System) in 2019 for all the drug law enforcement agencies under the mandate of Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS).
  4. Security Agencies involved: Besides the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, the Border Security Force, Sashastra Seema Bal, Indian Coast Guard, Railway Protection Force and the National Investigation Agency have also been empowered under the NDPS Act for making drug seizures.

 

Need for these measures:

A 2019 national study conducted by AIIMS-Delhi on the prevalence of drug abuse in the country, establishes that:

  1. A substantial percentage of people use psychoactive substances (alcohol, cannabis and opioids), and adult men top the list of drugs users.
  2. Alcohol is the most commonly abused psychoactive substance followed by cannabis, opioids (heroin, opium) and inhalers.
  3. Addiction generally begins with alcohol, moves towards nicotine and cannabis – considered as gateways to hard drugs – and then hard substances.

 

National Crime Records Bureau’s (NCRB) annual Accidental Death & Suicides in India (ADSI) reports:

  1. In the year 2019, 7719 out of the total 7860 suicide victims due to drug abuse/alcohol addiction were male.
  2. Even in the data relating to deaths due to road accidents, drugs & alcohol are one of the most causative factors.

 

Insta Curious: 

As per UNODC, drug trafficking has long been a problem in the Golden Triangle. Which countries come under the Golden Triangle? Reference: 

Also know about the Golden Crescent.

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. About UNODC.
  2. Overview of scheme of “Financial Assistance to States for Narcotics Control”.
  3. Composition of Narco-Coordination Centre (NCORD).
  4. National Fund for Control of Drug Abuse.
  5. About Narcotics Control Bureau.
  6. International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking and theme this year.

Mains Link:

India is vulnerable to narcotic drug trafficking. Critically examine its causes. Also comment on the role of Government in combating drug problem.

Sources: the Hindu.