The other day, one of my journalist friends from Delhicalled me up to check up the reported statement of a top former diplomat that we don’t have Narco terrorism in Punjab. I was shocked beyond belief and painfullyrealised how this word means different things to different people, but I am still far from being convinced. It is indeed a pity that even when dealing with our paramount concerns about the national security, people want hard documentary ‘balance sheet’ to show what amount drugs were produced and where and where and how it is sold to terrorist groups and for what amount. I will not be surprised if in due course of time such like people will want actual written receipts for each of thetransactions and there after receipts for each of the arms deals, disbursement of money with actual video shots there of and all that. I am not that that muchintelligent and broad minded, sorry.
The word Narco Terrorism first used by a former president of Peru, a guy named Fernando BelaundeTerry, way back in 1983 to describe ambushing of hiscountry’s anti terrorist police force. Yet another of the definitions understands it as a means of attempts of narcotics traffickers to influence the policies of a particular government or a society through violence and, or intimidation, and to hinder the enforcement of anti-drug laws by the systematic threat or use of such violence. Pablo Escobar's violence in his dealings with the Colombian government is probably one of the best known and documented examples of Narco Terrorism. The term is being increasingly used for known terrorist organizations that engage in drug trafficking activity to fund their nefarious operations and enlist recruits, besides acquiring expertise, arms and ammunition.
With reference to our part of Punjab, we can trace NarcoTerrorism back to mid 1980s when smuggling of gold was substituted by smuggling of heroin from across our border. This transformation followed somewhatstabilising the prices of gold in the international markets. Prior to that old was the primary commodity being smuggled into India from two major points that is the erstwhile Bombay from where Haji Mastans and the like were operating and our part of Punjab. A number of high and mighty political leaders and other rich people were involved in this kind of activities. The reason for their involvement was the fact that the smuggling of gold required ‘patronage’ and ‘considerable monetaryinvestments. This who is who of yesteryears were the people who could do both and were doing so.
Then came mid 1980s when the colour of smuggling changed, from gold it became white, heroine, smack or Chitta, as it is called popularly, here in Punjab. This was the era of ushering in of militancy in Punjab. On account of the ‘ideological’ pressure from militants, the use of liquor was fast diminishing fast and a sizable chunk of people started getting ‘hooked’ on to opiates, that is substandard and adulterated variety of heroin. This kind of opiate was introduced mostly by the same variety of rich political and other who is who of Punjab. The reason was there for was considerable delay in getting ‘remunerated’ for the drugs passing through Punjab, to their ultimate destinations abroad. Selling of the drugs within Punjab to almost a readymade clientele which already was into opium and ‘Bhukki’ that is the poppy husk, was not difficult task.
Thus mid 1980s was the starting point of usage of smack in Punjab, which reached a peak in subsequent years followed by the introduction of ‘Synthetic Drugs’ which primarily belonged to the Amphetamine and Meth-amphetamine groups and precursor elements like Ephidrine and Pseudo Ephedrine. Being a highly priced synthetic drug, they, like the grade four heroin, it was basically and primarily an export oriented commodity. There production places were, initially lightly called, ‘export oriented units and later it became one of the code words there for.
Now comes the top secret ‘List of top drug smugglers, barons and their associates’, prepared by me in 2007 as the head of intelligence of the Punjab police, which the Punjab government is desperately trying to hide. And in course of hiding the same, they are making foolish and stupid statements even in the high court. It was a top secret list and was almost a shocking ‘Who is Who of Punjab’. I am sure that the office and spare copies of that list must be somewhere and the day some ‘righteous’ person brings it out and makes the same public, then, I wonder, how the Punjab government and its stooges, react? Now the next question which comes up is, as to why the Punjab government is trying to hide that list? A number of persons figuring in that list are the persons who are, cutting across party lines, areengaged in the policy making and implementationprocess thereof. The sole attempt of such like people is just to ensure that the drugs remain in Punjab so that they can continue their nefarious activities, politicalactivities included. And a number of them are gettingthis drug money either in the form of ‘protection money’ or their direct indulgence in the game of smuggling. These activities come within the ambit of the second of the definitions of Narco Terrorism which is given above.
Now let us deal with the history of Narco Terrorism in India. Ever since the dismemberment of East Pakistan, now Bangla Desh, Pakistan has been ‘committed’ to attempts to create lawlessness in the country and if possible, dismemberments of our Kashmir and Punjab. They have an extensive network of sleeper cells not only in this region but throughout the country. And these activities are being carried out with the help of massive amounts of drug money, with which not only arms and ammunition is being procures but it is also been used for on the ground activities. In the initial post Bangla Deshyears, these nefarious activities used to be carried out with the help of the ‘Secret Service Funds ’which havenecessarily to be reflected in the national or state budget of the country or of the state, as the case might be.. To avoid this exposure, most secret services generate their own ‘Secret service Funds’ through their illegal and nefarious activities, including gun running and drugs And the drug money provides this immense cushion to Pakistan and that too with impunity.
And if still some of the well placed individuals say that we don’t have any Narco Terrorism in the country, then may god endow them with some wisdom.
This is yet another, like all others, of my articles sent to sent to a daily, but not approved by them...
So here it is...