Goa has been seeing a disturbing trend. Drug trade, which till sometime back was largely dominated by outsiders and foreigners, has lured a sizeable number of Goans who have been getting hooked on drug peddling to make easy money.
Police figures say that 30 per cent of the accused arrested last year by the Goa police in connection with drugs cases are Goans.
In 2017, the Goa police registered 165 cases under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act arresting around 180 accused.
The police say that locals are pulled to drug peddling by the lure of easy money.
Besides Goans, people from other states of the country and foreigners are also involved in the drug trade.
Sources said the police are zeroing in on drugs peddlers especially locals. Some of the notorious local drug peddlers have been arrested.
The drug trade has not only attracted individual Goans but families as well, as police figures point to the involvement of at least two families in this illicit trade.
The police claim that a sizeable number of Goans are involved in the drugs trade. Moreover, some Goan families have been getting hooked on drug peddling, which is something new and disturbing too, the police said.
“Last year, two sisters from Mapusa and their father were arrested in a drugs case. In another case, one youth from Assagao-Bardez was arrested while his brother was arrested the previous year. Their father has been serving a sentence of 12 years in jail for a drugs case,” a police officer said.
Of the 180 accused arrested in drugs cases last year, 54 were locals while 94 were from other parts of India and 32 were foreigners.
Some of the accused are out on bail while the others are in judicial custody.
A breakup of the foreigners arrested for drug peddling throws light on how deep-rooted the drug trade has become in the state. At least 50 per cent of the foreigners arrested in drugs cases are Nigerians: 18 accused are Nigerians, four each are from Russia and Germany, three from Israel, and one each from Nepal, South Korean and the UK.
In 2017, the anti-narcotic cell of the Goa police seized drugs worth over Rs 1.50 crore while the police stations across the state seized drugs worth over Rs 1.38 crore in different drugs raids. The type of drugs seized includes LSD, LSD liquid, MDMA, cocaine, hashish, charas, methamphetamine, DMT, ecstasy, and ganja.