Indian border officials seize record amount of heroin in 2012

Border Security Force

Border Security Force personnel display 11 packets of confiscated heroin and counterfeit Indian rupee notes during a press conference held close to the India-Pakistan Border at BSF headquarters in Amarkot, India, on Jan. 8, 2013. Narinder Nanu/AFP/Getty Images

Amritsar, Feb 6 (IANS) India’s Border Security Force (BSF) seized a record amount of heroin being smuggled in from Pakistan in 2012.

Last year, the BSF confiscated nearly 290 kg of heroin, estimated at a value of $273 million.

In comparison, the force seized 100 kg of the drug in 2008. In 2009, the amount rose to 120 kg, dipped slightly the next year to about 115 kg, and in 2011 dropped way down to 68 kg.

Then 2012 happened: “We recovered 288 kg of heroin in Punjab in 2012,” BSF’s Punjab frontier Inspector General Aditya Mishra said.

Mishra could not offer a reason for the spike from 2011 to 2012.

Punjab shares a 553-km barbed wire fenced border with Pakistan, which is guarded by 134 battalions of the BSF.

“In today’s world, conventional war being a rarity, the BSF faces never-ending challenges day and night in the form of infiltration of terrorists and smuggling of weapons and narcotics,” a BSF spokesman said.

Besides the BSF, other central and state government agencies are involved in tracking and seizing drugs being smuggled across the border. These include the Directorate of Revenue Intelligenceand customs as well as the Punjab Police Special Operations Cell.

In January 2013, the BSF confiscated more than 25 kg of heroin, worth about $23 million.

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