Crime: Although police have arrested several individuals in connection to illegal possession and smuggling of controlled narcotics and psychotropic substances in the country, drug trafficking continues to rise.

On December 27, Phuntsholing police apprehended a man in possession of 2,515 capsules of Spasmoproxyvon (SP) and 390 tablets of Nitrosun (N-10).

According to Phuntsholing police, the man was en route to Thimphu from Phuentsholing in a taxi. The 35-year-old businessman based in Thimphu was arrested at around 2am at Kharbandi after a tipoff from an informer.

Police said upon interrogation, the man said that the substances were for his self-consumption. The man has been detained for further investigation.

Similarly, another tipoff led to the arrest of an Indian national in possession of 300 capsules of SP on the same day at around 9:30pm. The 21-year-old was arrested while he was entering the country from Jaigoan.

According to police the man said that he was to deliver the consignment to a Bhutanese individual upon entering the country. However, the culprit did not have any information on the Bhutanese buyer.

On December 28, Gelephu police also apprehended a man travelling to Thimphu from Phuntsholing in possession of 10 capsules of SP and 18 tablets of N-10.

Police said that public transportations like buses and taxis are the most common mode of transportation through which illegal trafficking of controlled substances takes place in the country.

Some 15 cases of illegal possession and smuggling of controlled narcotics and psychotropic substances were recorded this month. However, the police were not able to provide the total number of such cases registered in the fiscal year 2015.

Since police began a major crackdown on drugs on December 2, 2013, about 1,373 persons were arrested as of October 23 this year. Of the total, 789 are aged below 24.

Records also state that of the total arrests, 191 were students followed by 97 government and corporate employees. The rest, 1,085 were either unemployed, farmers or into private businesses.

Younten Tshedup