Hyderabad: Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao’s directions to adopt a multi-pronged strategy to deal with the drug menace in the State has prompted the prohibition and excise department to carry out surprise inspections at pubs and bars-cum-restaurants since Friday night. The action follows within a few hours of a high-level meeting of the Chief Minister […]
Hyderabad: Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao’s directions to adopt a multi-pronged strategy to deal with the drug menace in the State has prompted the prohibition and excise department to carry out surprise inspections at pubs and bars-cum-restaurants since Friday night.
The action follows within a few hours of a high-level meeting of the Chief Minister with the police and excise departments’ officials on Friday.
The excise department laid special focus on conducting surprise inspections in pubs and bars-cum-restaurants, where many people assemble to take part in parties especially during weekends, officials said. Instructions were issued to the excise inspectors in Banjara Hills and Jubilee Hills, where more pubs and bars-cum-restaurants were established, to conduct surprise checks.
During the meeting, the Chief Minister asked Director-General of Police M Mahendar Reddy to establish a state-of-the-art Counter Intelligence (CI) Cell to deal with the menace.
But the excise department, which grants licenses to pubs and bars-cum-restaurants, decided to step up surveillance at pubs to gather information about drug peddlers. “We received instructions from the higher officials to conduct surprise inspections at the pub, and bars-cum-restaurants,” an official confirmed.
He said the surprise checks might enable the department to zero in on peddlers. Several peddlers were earlier found to be maintaining contacts with their clients at pubs to carry out their transactions.
He said cases against the license holders of pubs and bars-cum-restaurants would be booked under the relevant provisions of the Excise Act if any violations were found during inspections.
The role of peddlers, who allegedly conducted transactions in a couple of pubs, came to light during the investigation conducted by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) after summoning film personalities from the Telugu film industry in 2017. The SIT was constituted after busting a drug racket.
A four-pronged strategy adopted by the Excise department in coordination with the Police department in controlling the menace of smuggling marijuana has also yielded good results with almost all the repeat offenders cooling their heels in various prisons across the State.
The same strategy also enabled the excise department to make Dhoolpet free of marijuana sales. For the last three months, there was no major activity in Dhoolpet and its environs on sale of marijuana, officials said.
Since most peddlers were getting marijuana substance from agency areas in Araku near Visakhapatnam, the police and excise officials set up separate check-posts on the borders between Telangana and Andhra Pradesh to check vehicles.
Now you can get handpicked stories from Telangana Today on Telegram everyday. Click the link to subscribe.