Government will submit a memorandum to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Kerala to seek amendments to Narcotics Act to curb drug trafficking
news Sunday, June 26, 2016 - 09:53
Written by  PTI

 Vowing to curb drug trafficking in Kerala, the state government on Saturday said it would approach the Centre seeking to amend the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act to firmly deal with drug offences and make penalties stiff.

State Excise Minister TP Ramakrishnan said the state government would submit a memorandum in this regard to Prime Minister Narendra Modi soon.

Noting that carrying one kg of ganja was quite a big quantity but it was a bailable offence, he said ganja traffickers take advantage of the loopholes in the law to continue with their illegal trade.

"There is a need to amend the central act in this regard to curb the supply chain of ganja and other drugs in the country. The state government will approach the Prime Minister with a memorandum seeking to amend the Central Act. It is a very serious issue," the Minister told a meet-the-press programme in Kochi.

His comments came a day after state Governor Justice (retd) P Sathasivam, in his policy address in the Assembly, expressed concern over drug peddling.

"The increase in the use and availability of drugs in the state is disturbing. The opinion of all sections of society would be taken into account before my government formulates its policy stand," Sathasivam had said.

Ramakrishnan said the LDF government would take strong action against the beer and wine parlours found selling liquor illegally.

Pitching for a strong awareness campaign for reducing consumption of liquor in phases, the Minister said opinion of all sections of society would be taken into account before formulating Kerala government's new liquor policy.

The Governor's address also noted that the government was of the view that restrictions on consumption of liquor had not yielded the desired positive impact.

The Congress-led UDF government's liquor policy, which came into force in 2014, had restricted Indian Made Foreign Liquor bars to five-star category hotels and shut down more than 700 other bars while envisaging total prohibition in 10 years.

However, the LDF had said it was not in favour of total prohibition and pitched for awareness campaign for reducing consumption of liquor in phases.