The Tripura Police recovered 40,560 bottles of Phensedyl on Monday from a godown in Badharghat town, Tripura. The Phensydel bottles recovered are estimated to be worth over Rs 22.5 lakhs. Tripura policeman, Tarun Debbarma said that they have arrested the owner and detained the manager of the godown. Phensedyl is a cough syrup which is often used as an addictive drug. On September 3, in another similar incident, a container-worth of Phensedyl was seized by the Tripura police in Teliamura. The truck had 4,475 bottles of Phensedyl with 300 bottles of other cough syrups. Many such raids have led to recovering a huge number of contraband drugs being smuggled to India. The Border Security Force (BSF) reported that women are often used by narcotics dealers for smuggling such drugs across borders.
Deputy Drugs Controller and Controlling Authority of Tripura, MK Pal in an interview with United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said that the main pharmaceutical drug trafficked in Tripura is codeine phosphate used in preparing cough syrups. Codeine is a narcotic drug which can cause addiction when used in large quantities over a long period of time. Phensedyl cough syrup is smuggled into Bangladesh as a replacement for alcohol. As alcohol is banned in the country, cough syrups are the popular alternative for the people of Bangladesh.
MK Pal also shared that the cough syrups are smuggled to Bangladesh by hiding them in buses and trucks. While discussing why Phensedyl is so popular, he said that Phensedyl contains ephedrine hydrochloride and promethazine along with codeine phosphate making the cough syrup very addictive. Ephedrine is developed from an evergreen shrub called ephedra which is addictive in nature if used over a period of time. Even after the components of Phensedyl was changed, the demand for the cough syrup hasn't reduced. In the past, the BSF has also seized such drug consignments being smuggled into Bangladesh from the state of Tripura containing drug tables, cannabis and cough syrups.
(With Inputs from ANI)