.........SAMBALPUR: THE kingpin of an inter-State racket involved in illegal trading ofcodeine-laced cough syrup was arrested by Sambalpur police from Chhattisgarh. Around 1,000 bottles of cough syrup were seized from his possession.
The accused was identified as Ashok Kumar Agrawal (54) of Kharsia in Raigarh district of Chhattisgarh. He is owner of a medicine shop in Kharsia and was supplying the codeine-laced cough syrup to many districts of Odisha illegally.
On August 27, police had seized 5,040 bottles of codeine-laced cough syrup from a private bus at Ainthapali Chowk in Sambalpur city and arrested three persons for their involvement in illegal transportation of the contraband. They were Milan Parija of Bhubaneswar, conductor of the bus Manoranjan Das and cleaner Ajay Kumar Behera.
During investigation, police came to know that Milan had procured the cough syrup bottles from Ashok and was transporting it with the help of the conductor and cleaner of the bus. Subsequently, police conducted raid at Kharsia on September 18 and arrested Ashok from there and seized 1,000 bottles of cough syrup.
Sambalpur Sadar SDPO B G Mohanty said Ashok was supplying the cough syrup bottles to many districts of Odisha by issuing fake bills. Some other persons involved in the racket are still at large. The matter is under investigation and they will be arrested soon, the cop added.