NCB Busted Two Factories Illegally Making Alprazolam In Pune, Seized 200 Kg Drug

Mumbai: Narcotic Control Bureau (NCB) Mumbai busted two factories in Pune where Alprazolam was being manufactured illegally in large quantities. Alprazolam is anti anti-anxiety pill which can be sold only by medical shops with a licence and on prescription.

As per NCB officials, however, its powder is used to make toddy more potent in parts of Telangana and Hyderabad and hence is in high demand there.

Deputy DG Sanjay Singh said that based on information about two illegal factories operating in Pune, an NCB team under Mumbai Zonal Director went to the spot on October 6. On their way there, they intercepted one vehicle near Shirur Taluka of Pune district.

On close examination of the contents of the vehicle, suspicious powder and some lab equipment were noticed. On spot interrogation of the person in the vehicle it was found that there is a factory shed in a nearby area, Singh said.

On verification, it was found that there is a clandestine laboratory located next to a poultry farm while another was in another part of Pune hidden in a chikoo farm.

On examination of this clandestine lab 173.35 kg of Alprazolam was found along with a huge stock of raw material required for Alprazolam manufacturing. The clandestine lab contained state of art equipment, reactors, generators, dryers etc.

A second factory at Ambegaon in Pune was also raided and in the lab there, 25.95 kgs of Alprazolam was found along with a huge stock of raw material required for its manufacturing.

Proximity to poultry and chikoo farms ensured the smell of the chemicals didn’t spread leading to suspicion, Ghawate said.

Both the clandestine labs were built in the inaccessible area where it was difficult to reach by vehicle, to hide from the general public, an official said.

In this case, one person who went to sell illegally manufactured Alprazolam was caught at Hyderabad. It was also found that both these clandestine labs were run by the same drug syndicate. The illegal Alprazolam manufactured was sold in Maharashtra, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh especially for making illegal toddy.

An official said that in all nearly 200 Kg of Alprazolam was seized which is worth Rs 50 crores. An officer said that as against other chemicals, Alprazolam manufacturing is a complex process and requires several chemicals and a proper industrial set up.

An officer said that while two accused have been arrested, they are still on the lookout for the mastermind behind the entire set up.

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