In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the lockdown and sealing of the international border along West Bengal and Bangladesh has failed to dampen the spirits of miscreants across the India Bangladesh border as they are still actively smuggling Phensedyl, narcotics, and fake Indian currency notes.
The latest case is of smuggling in Pumpkins in Hakimpur in which 345 bottles of Phensedyl has been seized at Indo Bangladesh border.
During the search, two bags of pumpkins were found and 345 bottles of phensedyl were found hidden inside the pumpkins. The value of these bottles is nearly Rs 53,000.
Phensedyl is smuggled across to Bangladesh for its addictive quality. The cough syrup is laced with codeine and is consumed in large quantities, against the recommended small doses, to get a kick.
Because the consumption of alcohol is prohibited in Bangladesh, Phensedyl addiction has been on the rise and it is sold at ten times its price.
Last month, guards at the Border Security Force's (BSF) Dayarampur outpost, could not imagine that phensedyl could be hidden inside cooked khichdi as they were only used to finding the bottles inside clothes and vehicles or containers.
The BSF had seized over 6,000 units of Phensedyl. This is a cough syrup that is smuggled from India to Bangladesh. Apart from this, there were incidents during the lockdown when 1,850 units of Phensedyl were seized in two separate incidents.
Deputy Inspector General of Police of South Bengal Frontier was earlier quoted as saying, "Smugglers and miscreants are trying innovative means during this lockdown period. The fact that there has been no let down in our vigil in maintaining the sanctity of the international border is clear from the seizures we have carried out in the period of lockdown."
After Bangladesh urged India to ban the concoction, the Indian government had earlier banned the cough syrup Phensedyl, among a host of other drugs. But eventually, the manufacturer of phensedyl, Abbott, was granted an interim injunction by the Delhi High Court against the Government action.
When this step was taken the border guards had heaved a sigh of relief as they did no longer had to cope up with recurrent episodes of phensedyl smuggling. But, it was a premature sigh and did not last long.