Drug menace: Badal blames porous borders

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Chandigarh – In his continuing blaming of the Centre for not being able to control the smuggling of drugs from Pakistan, chief minister Parkash Singh Badal on Wednesday acknowledged that the state’s border with Rajasthan was also porous. 

“Ban the open sale of poppy husk in Rajasthan, and that will help Punjab really (in checking the drug menace in its territory),” Badal told the media on Wednesday on the sidelines of a seminar here. He said the smuggling of drugs from Pakistan was continuing, and the seizures were now frequent along the entire border.

The CM had earlier accused the Centre of failing to seal the international border to block the drug routes. In reply to a question, he said it was a myth that drug peddlers enjoyed political patronage and support of the police. “Such notions are false, as no such instance has come to the fore,” he said.

The verbal slugfest between the Congressmen and Akalis, in which they had labelled each other drug addicts, was not in good taste, said Badal. “I appeal to every politician to stop such aberrations,” he added. The Congress on Tuesday had dared deputy chief minister Sukhbir Badal to undergo a dope test, in reply to Sukhbir’s assertions that man Congressmen were on drugs.

The spat had begun after Congress’ youth icon Rahul Gandhi had remarked on his visit to Punjab that 70% of the young people in the state were addicted to drugs.

On the failure of the Punjab police to catch the main suspect in the brazen kidnapping of Shruti, a minor girl, in Faridkot, Badal said the entire police force was on the job, and even the director general of police had visited Faridkot to look into the case personally. The CM said the matter was of grave concern.

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