New Delhi: The BIMSTEC Conference on Combating Drug Trafficking concluded in New Delhi yesterday. Over two days of extensive deliberations, the Conference provided an important platform for partner nations to share ideas and exchange best practices required to combat the drug menace in the region.
The Ministry of Home Affairs said in a Press communication today that geographical proximity to both Golden Crescent and Golden Triangle – major opium production regions of the world – puts all BIMSTEC partner nations in a very precarious position. India’s position is more vulnerable as it is sandwiched between the Golden Crescent and Golden Triangle.
Bumper harvests of opium in Afghanistan for the last few years have given rise to increased supply of heroin in all BIMSTEC nations. Another major cause for worry is the large number of methamphetamine manufacturing facilities that are prevalent in some of the BIMSTEC countries. These facilities manufacture a large quantity of methamphetamine which is further trafficked to all BIMSTEC countries.
Another area of concern is drug trafficking through sea routes that affects BIMSTEC Nations. While the Bay of Bengal facilitates trade worth billions of dollars, the drug traffickers also use this vast network to their advantage, stated the Home Ministy, citing two recent seizures of 371 kg and 1,156 kg methamphetamine by Indian authorities from two vessels in the Bay of Bengal as glaring examples of this facet.
The BIMSTEC region is a thriving centre of pharmaceutical manufacture and trade, and is also in very close proximity to China, which is another leading country in the pharma sector. This has also made the BIMSTEC region vulnerable to the diversion and trafficking in pharmaceutical drugs, stated the Ministry.
Developments in technology have thrown a challenge to the drug law enforcement agencies, the Ministry explained, adding that use of the dark net is one of the ugly facets of technological use in drug trafficking. The combination of dark net and courier/postal deliveries have made narcotics & psychotropic substance trafficking more anonymous in nature. Keeping in mind these problems which are common to the BIMSTEC nations and Indian subcontinent in particular, the various sessions of the conference were designed.
The Conference brought out the best practices followed in terms of drug law enforcement in BIMSTEC nations. All the BIMSTEC nations reaffirmed their commitment to increased co-operation.
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