Busting a drug trafficking racket, the Malkangiri police have seized a huge consignment of ganja and arrested 34 persons involved in transporting the contraband, "presumably to neighbouring Chhattisgarh", a senior police officer said Saturday.
A team of 75 officers, led by Sub-divisional Police Officer (SDPO) Risikesh Khilari, intercepted the traffickers in Malkangiri forests during a raid, which began on June 6 night and continued till the early hours of June 7, and seized over 3,000kg of ganja from them, he said.
Incidentally, the night before, around 100 traffickers had escaped after a scuffle with the officers, who raided the forests acting on a tip-off, Malkangiri Superintendent of Police Jagmohan Meena said.
One police officer was injured in the scuffle, he told reporters here.
"In all, the police have seized 3,305 kg of ganja and arrested 34 traffickers during the raid, which continued for several hours. We suspect the contraband was being taken to neighbouring Chhattisgarh," Meena said.
Of those arrested, 17 were from Malkangiri, 11 from Nabarangpur, five from Koraput and one from the Chhattishgarh.
According to government records, 1kg ganja sells for Rs 10,000.
Noting that 48 cases of ganja trafficking were detected so far this year in Malkangiri district, bordering Chhattisgarh, the SP said the police were taking stringent measures to check the menace.
Altogether 104 people have been arrested this year, 39 of them residents of other states, he added.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)