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Andhra Cops Burnt 2 Lakh Kilos of Ganja, and Apparently, No One Got High

As part of Operation Parivarthana, 47,986.934 kg of ganja and 46.41 litres of hashish oil have been seized.

Published
India
2 min read
Andhra Cops Burnt 2 Lakh Kilos of Ganja, and Apparently, No One Got High
i

With curiosity and anticipation, many people watched the spectacle taking place in an open ground in Kodur village in Andhra Pradesh. In a first-of-its-kind instance (and much to the disguised dismay of some), the Andhra Pradesh Police was preparing to set fire to two lakh kilos of ganja.

Erecting huge pyres on the ground in Kodur, which is in Anakapalle mandal of Visakhapatnam, the Andhra Pradesh Police carried out the exercise. Many on Twitter were curious to know if the smoke would cause police, journalists, and others present at the site to "get high."

However, all that the massive flames did was give many a headache, and apparently, no one got high.

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Reporters who covered the event said that they did not experience the intoxicating effect of the burning ganja, but a few did have mild headaches, which could be attributed to the raging fire and the thick smoke. The police said that they used sugar and camphor to cut down the effect of the ganja's smoke.

The exercise was part of 'Operation Parivarthana', an initiative to eradicate the drug menace in the state. The value of the destroyed, banned substance was at around Rs 500 crore, according to the police. Destruction of such large quantities of drugs was a first in the country, they said.

Police chose Kodur as the location for this spectacle, as there were no residents in a 4-km radius. The other residents in the vicinity were asked to remain indoors as a precaution, as the burnt weed could cause headaches or intoxication.

Operation Parivarthana was launched on 1 November 2021. So far, as part of this operation, 47,986.934 kg of ganja and 46.41 litres of hashish oil have been seized along with 314 vehicles. As many as 577 cases have been filed, and 1,500 persons arrested. Marijuana is banned under the Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act of 1985. The Act prohibits the sale and purchase of marijuana. The police said that 406 teams are part of Operation Parivarthana.

According to the police, large-scale cultivation of ganja is being done in the districts bordering Odisha, like Srikakulam, Vizianagaram, Visakhapatnam, and East Godavari in Andhra Pradesh. Using satellite images, they found that 23 districts in Odisha and 11 mandals in Visakhapatnam were cultivating the banned crop. Authorities have destroyed 7,552 acres of ganja as part of the initiative, in which 400 acres of crops were destroyed by the farmers themselves, police said.

As mostly tribal communities have been cultivating marijuana, the police are also doing public awareness campaigns. Since the inception of the programme, 1,963 awareness campaigns have been conducted in which over 70,000 people have participated. The police had also erected 120 checkposts to curb the menace.

(This article was originally published in The News Minute and has been reposted with permission.)

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