A drug trafficker allegedly involved in 36 cases of drug peddling has been detained for a year under the Prevention of Illicit Trafficking in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act after the Delhi Police received approval from the Central Advisory Board, officials said on Sunday. This is the first such case of preventive detention under the Act in the country, they said.
The accused, Sharafat Sheikh alias Mohammed Ayub, has been detained under the Prevention of Illicit Trafficking in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (PITNDPS), Act, 1988 in order to curb his illegal activities, a police official said. Chinmoy Biswal, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime), said a proposal was sent by the Narcotics Cell of Delhi Police's Crime Branch to the finance ministry's PITNDPS division for Sheikh's detention.
Keeping in view his active involvement in drug trafficking, the proposal was put up before a screening committee comprising of six members, headed by Narcotics Control Bureau Chief. The committee found it fit and the competent authority (joint secretary, revenue department, finance ministry) issued his detention order under the PITNDPS Act on April 2, he said. The detention order has now been ratified by the Central Advisory Board, comprising of three high court judges headed by Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court, in a hearing on June 1, he said.
Sheikh was first arrested in 1986 in a case registered under IPC section 324 (voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means) and 325 (punishment for voluntarily causing grievous hurt). During his judicial custody, he came in contact with a drug seller and later started supplying drugs, police said. He began drug peddling and later became one of the top suppliers of heroin in Delhi-NCR. He started selling heroin in huge quantity in Delhi and adjacent areas. He also started receiving stolen jewellery. Soon his family also indulged in drug trafficking and many cases have been registered against them for selling drugs, Biswal said.
In 2007, when Sheikh was lodged in Tihar Jail, he called his son and brother for help in a drug deal. The police later arrested his family members in this case, the officer said. In July 2020, two men-Nasir and Mohammed Rafiq- were arrested by the Crime Branch with three kgs heroin. They disclosed that the contraband was procured by them from Mandsaur district in Madhya Pradesh at the behest of Sheikh, who was then lodged in Tihar Jail and running his drug module' from the prison, according to police.