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Koraput marked as marijuana epicentre

Rs. 3.5 lakh haul on NH-33 leads Hazaribagh police to nab kingpin in Odisha

Vishvendu Jaipuriar Hazaribagh Published 27.06.20, 05:18 PM
Sunil Kumar and Baleshwar Nath who were caught on June 23 with 164 kgs of marijuana in the pick-up van in Hazaribagh.

Sunil Kumar and Baleshwar Nath who were caught on June 23 with 164 kgs of marijuana in the pick-up van in Hazaribagh.

The Koraput district of Odisha has been confirmed as the epicentre of the illegal marijuana business, after the recovery of the stuff on the Ranch-Patna Highway (NH-33) near Konar bridge close to Hazaribagh on Tuesday.

States like Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and others are also getting supplies of marijuana from the district.


Hazaribagh police are interrogating Sunil Kumar and Baleshwar Nath, who were caught with 164kg of marijuana on Tuesday, and now have information to police about the organised gang.

In February this year, police had seized Rs 3.5 crore worth of marijuana on NH-33, and investigation linked its connection with Koraput.

Koraput, once known for its natural beauty, scenic spots, tribal language and culture, has gained infamy for marijuana cultivation and smuggling.

Kumar, who was driving the drug-laden truck, and Nath, a cleaner, only had a mobile number where they were directed to call after crossing Jharkhand border.

They were unknowingly delivering the consignment to a district in Bihar.

The duo, who were working as couriers, said the business runs in great secrecy. Once the pick-up managed to cross Jharkhand, they were given further details regarding the address by calling on the mobile number.

The system was developed so as not to get caught, and the gang is coming up with new ideas to save their business from police.

The 164kgs of marijuana bags found on Tuesday were kept in a specially designed box of the pick van, said an officer.

A police team will visit Bihar and Odisha to reveal the nexus and to put a check on the illegal business.

The police of Jharkhand, Bihar and Odisha working together.

Sub divisional police officer of Sadar, Kamal Kishore said they had seized three big consignments of marijuana in recent past.

“It is now clear that supply is coming from Koraput. Our investigation is ongoing and soon, a police team will go to Odisha to reach the kingpin of this illegal business”, he said.

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