TODAY -

Drugs and poppy in dry Manipur : Unmask the kingpins
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: January 20, 2023 -



Strong words and perfectly in line with they had done and what they actually deserve, if one may add.

Tougher action, this is what DGP P Doungel has echoed and the law Court permitting why not.

Extend the tougher action being mulled and the arrest of the five policemen while smuggling drugs should ideally be the starting block to tighten the noose on the big fishes, who have been pulling the strings.

This is the line that The Sangai Express has been maintaining all this while and it was with a reason why on the very day that the five cops were held, it was pointed out that the five policemen could have only been 'carrying' the drugs for a fee.

The Sangai Express still sticks to its reasoning or argument, if one likes it, and that it is hard to believe that the policemen would have been in a position to cough up the needed amount of money to procure the drugs from the source.

Most likely there is someone big behind the scene, pulling the strings and financing the whole operation, that is from the point of taking the drugs at the source, at a price, transporting it through the Imphal-Moreh highway to be ultimately taken to its further destination.

The police has a job at hand and so too the Government Arrested on January 16 and while it is true that it is still too early to expect any sort of a breakthrough in the course of the investigation, one hopes and prays that the matter is not allowed to rest there.

The arrest of the five cops should be the starting point for the Government to zero in on the big fishes behind the drugs racket.

Even as Manipur came to grips with the news that five policemen were held with drugs on the Imphal-Moreh line, came the information from the Chief Conservator of the Forest Department that poppy plantations spread over 190 hectares of hill slopes have been destroyed at Churachandpur, Kangpokpi and Chandel districts from January 15 to January 18.

This is quite an achievement, one may say, and one hopes that the exercise does not end there and lead to the arrest of not only the tillers of the soil but also who owned the land and ultimately work out who financed the whole thing.

This is a point which has been stressed repeatedly in this column and one hopes the Government takes the poppy plantation destruction drive' to its next level.

In so far as the War on Drugs campaign is concerned, one may say that 2023 has started off on a promising note in that the Government seems to be edging closer to the kingpins.

The arrest of the five police commandos should more than indicate how drugs managed to be smuggled along the National Highways which are otherwise tightly manned with numerous security check posts.

The Government now need to take the drive one or two steps upward If 2023 has started off on a promising note in so far as the War on Drugs campaign is concerned, the Government will also need to take a long, hard look at the unfulfilled promise of making running water available to all the households.

This was a promise made before the 2017 Assembly elections and more than five years down the line and there is nothing much to suggest that things have started improving.

It is for a reason why it has become necessary for anyone building a new house to incorporate a water storage tank This comes with a price, of course but this should say something profound about the pathetic water supply in a place where rainfall is otherwise abundant.

As repeatedly said many times in this column, it is for a reason why there was a pond, a 'pukhri', at the compound of every household. It is the rainfall and it is unfortunate that down the decades successive Governments at Imphal have failed to supply the needed quota of tap water to its citizens.

A case of water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink and this is something to be acknowledged with shame.

The Government should wake up to the reality that Manipur is starved of the most basic need water while drug barons appear to be sleeping comfortably in their den.



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