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Army officer held with Rs.15 crore worth drugs in Manipur

Army officer held with Rs.15 crore worth drugs in Manipur

Imphal: An Indian Army spokesperson was Sunday arrested in Manipur with contraband drugs worth about Rs.15 crore (Rs.150 million) in international market, police here said.

The drugs were to be smuggled to neighbouring Myanmar, a Manipur Police official said.

Col. Ajay Choudhury of Red Shield Division was arrested along with five other people from Pallel town in Thoubal district after a hot chase, district police chief Jhaljit Singh told IANS.

Police claimed that the army officer earlier smuggled banned drugs from capital Imphal to Moreh town on Myanmar border five times.

The other five accused are Col. Choudhury's assistant R.K. Babblu, a private airlines' assistant manager Ngairakpam Brojendro, Haopu Haokip, Minthang Bongel and Milan Haokip, the police officer said.

"They were carrying pseudoephedrine tablets of different brands in three vehicles to Moreh to smuggle these to Myanmar," Jhaljit Singh said.

The police chief said they received a tip-off about the movement Saturday. But when a police team tried to stop the vehicles in Khongjom, they drove away without stopping. They were caught after a chase.

The accused, including the army officials, have been booked under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985.

"If found guilty, strict action will be taken against him (Col. Choudhury)," Indian Army spokesperson Col. Jagdeep Dahiya told IANS.

Pseudoephedrine tablets are also called party drugs as these induce great energy when taken as pills, injected, inhaled or smoked. These kind of drugs are particularly attractive to teenagers world over.

"The drug has been used as a precursor to the manufacturing of speed pills such as amphetamine and metamphetamine in Myanmar," a customs official said.


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