4 arrested with cannabis worth Rs 13 lakh in Bhubaneswar

In an ongoing effort to combat the narcotics trade within the twin cities of the Commissionerate, the Special Crime Unit has successfully dismantled an organized gang of cannabis traffickers.

Bhubaneswar: In an ongoing effort to combat the narcotics trade within the twin cities of the Commissionerate, the Special Crime Unit has successfully dismantled an organized gang of cannabis traffickers.

Four individuals involved in the drug trade have been apprehended, whom police identified as Chandan Kumar Prusty alias Munu, Anil Digal aka Lala, Deepak Digal alias Lulu and Satish Pradhan aka Litu.

Police also seized substantial 130 kilograms of cannabis, valued at Rs 13 lakhs along with the two vehicles employed for transportation. A case has been registered under sections 20(b) (ii)(C)/29 of the NDPS Act and is presently under investigation.

The Narcotics wing of the Special Crime Unit, led by Sanjeev Satpathy, Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police, and K.K. Hariprasad, Assistant Commissioner of Police, along with Inspector Santoshini Behera and the dedicated team, had been diligently monitoring the activities of an organized gang of drug traffickers for the past 15 days.

Based on reliable information, these traffickers were acquiring significant quantities of cannabis from Kandhamal, storing their supply in a warehouse located in the Indira Housing Colony. Out of the four apprehended suspects, three hailed from the Kandhamal region, while one was from Bhubaneswar. Working in collusion, these individuals had rented a house in Indira Housing Colony, Lingipur, under the jurisdiction of Dhauli Police Station. The house served as a temporary storage facility where they stockpiled the cannabis, intended for distribution in Kolkata.

This illicit operation was characterized by a sinister scheme. The traffickers would acquire cannabis from their associates, primarily of Bengali origin, who were based in Kolkata. After securing an order, they would procure the cannabis from Kandhamala at a rate of Rs 10,000 per kilogram, subsequently selling it in Kolkata for prices ranging from Rs 25,000 to Rs 30,000 per kilogram. Unsurprisingly, all these transactions occurred through UPI payments, lending an unfortunate layer of digital anonymity to their criminal enterprise.

Two of the accused, Chandan Ku Prusty and Anil Ku Digal, had access to their own vehicles, both of which have been confiscated during the investigation. These vehicles played a pivotal role in the transportation of cannabis from Kandhamal to the temporary storage site, where the contraband would then be loaded into these vehicles for further transit to Kolkata.

On October 15, 2023, following a demand for cannabis, the suspects procured 130 kilograms of cannabis from Phulbani and transported it to the aforementioned storage facility using the two vehicles. Acting on a tip-off, the Crime Unit Team conducted a raid at the warehouse, successfully seizing the two vehicles, laden with cannabis.

Throughout the course of the investigation, all the accused parties have confessed their involvement in the criminal activities. They have also divulged the identities of their suppliers and the individuals to whom the illicit items were intended for delivery.

The investigative team is working diligently on this information, with plans to dispatch teams to Kolkata and Phulbani for further inquiries. The team is also probing the financial aspects of this criminal enterprise and the intricate network of individuals involved in the narcotics trade.

The accused individuals are to be presented before the Court tomorrow, with requests for police remand to facilitate a more comprehensive custodial interrogation.

The following articles seized:

  • Two Vehicles: OD-33-Q-7107 (Maruti Dezire) and OR-02-BD-7887 (SX4)
  • 130 Kilograms of Cannabis
  • Four Mobile Phones
  • Vehicle Documents, Aadhaar Cards, and Other Evidential Materials

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