CHENNAI: State Higher Education Minister K Ponmudy on Thursday squarely blamed the Union government for the prevalence of drugs in the country and said that maximum drug sale happens in Gujarat, the home state of Prime Minister Narenda Modi.
Facing flak from the Opposition for drug prevalence in the State, Ponmudy told media persons at party headquarters Anna Arivalayam that it was not possible for Tamil Nadu to control (the flow) drugs on its own.
“No matter what action we take, it is not possible for Tamil Nadu to control it alone. The Union government is squarely responsible for the drug situation. Maximum drug sale happens in the PM’s home state of Gujarat,” he remarked, recalling the huge seizure in Mundra port in Gujarat a few months ago.
Alleging that drugs (narcotic) substances were ‘imported’ from foreign countries through the privatized port, the minister claimed that smuggling of drugs through privately operated ports, mainly the Mundra Port in Gujarat, has increased exponentially.
Claiming that drugs reach many parts of the country from Gujarat, he said the Union government should take action to stop this.
Reasoning that narcotic substances are not produced in Tamil Nadu and they are manufactured abroad and smuggled into the country, Ponmudi said that this is not an issue concerning a state.
Quoting a former judge in Gujarat as pointing out that smuggling has been facilitated by officials or others in the Mundra port, the minister said that the judge has advised the government to emulate the procedures followed in foreign countries to crackdown on narcotic substances.
Pointing out that during the 2013-2021 AIADMK regime, about 952 tonnes of drugs worth Rs 32.99 crore was seized, against 152.94 ton seized worth Rs 9.19 crore seized during the one year DMK regime, Ponmudy said that the Union government should take appropriate action, mainly stop privatising ports.
Stating that the State government could act only to some extent and the Union govt should initiate strong action legally to crackdown on narcotics smuggling completely, the minister said that the Chief Minister has given strict instructions like never before during the recent IAS and IPS officers conference to crackdown on sale of drugs near schools and colleges.