Express News Service
BENGALURU: “My friend was among those arrested two days ago. He got into ganja first after completing school as he was going through depression,” said Dhruv Acharya (named changed), a third-year BSc student.
This is the familiar story of many college students who started off consuming drugs, and later shifted to peddling.With the increasing number of drug raids in the city, students formed a majority among peddlers and consumers, according to Bengaluru City Police.
Last month alone, over 300 raids were conducted — the highest so far this year. Of this, 90% of the cases were youths in the 18-25 age group.
Sources in the department stated that they received strict orders from the Home Minister to focus on the drug menace. A senior police officer said that the raids have increased five-fold in the past one month.
“Most of the students were either from other states, foreigners or college dropouts. And most of these synthetic drugs are sourced over the Dark Net,” said Additional Commissioner of Police (East) S Murugan.
Number of NDPS cases
- 2020: 530
- 2019: 768
- 2018: 286
But what exactly is the darknet? The search engines we use which provide us with results are called the ‘surface web’. However, there is much more to the web which is unsearchable called the ‘Deep Net’.
A fraction of this, where the user and site owner are anonymous, is called the ‘Dark Net’.Sources say that with city police closing in on them, drug peddlers are forced to sell them in bigger quantities.
“When you sell the drugs in bigger quantities, the job is done faster. If we sell it in smaller quantities, it takes more time. And cops are likely to catch us since we will be left with the possession of the drugs,” says a source.
While there is severe risk involved in drug peddling, the prices have increased since last year depending on the quality.
For example, earlier, a ganja packet of 10 grams cost Rs 500 while at present a 20 grams packet costs Rs 1,500-Rs 2,500.
Purchasing the drugs requires bitcoins wherein one bitcoin costs over Rs 7 lakh. Cops say it is unclear from where the youths are procuring the money.
Police Commissioner Kamal Pant said, “There is nothing new about these raids. We are doing our routine work. There have been rumours of NCB being involved but none of that is true.”