According to reliable sources, the Russian drug mafia in Goa has mastered the art of economically and successfully growing hybrid varieties of cannabis or marijuana indoors, to produce high quality Ganja and Charas, both for local consumption and export to European and American markets.
IndiaScoops.com has learnt that different hybrid strains of cannabis are being grown indoors in either mini glasshouses or mini greenhouses at at least 18-20 different places in North Goa alone, to produce a sizable quantity of the drugs both for local consumption and export.
The baby plants are imported clandestinely and then re-planted in Goa in the coastal areas of Morjim, Pernem, Siolim, Mandrem, Vagator and Anjuna and even in Candolim.
Plants are also smuggled from Himachal Pradesh and then cross-bred to produce hybrids and then grown in Goa.
IndiaScoops.com has learnt that such indoor plantations are being cultivated at nearly 20 places in North Goa, which produce a huge amount of marijuana, which is extracted in home labs manned by the cultivators themselves. In some cases, the raw material is sent to other “specialists” within Goa who extract and produce the drug from the plants.
The monthly local production in such indoor cultivation setups could be valued at over Rs One Crore, based on local prices in Goa, says a Russian source, who spoke to IndiaScoops.com.
In July this year, the Goa Police had busted a marijuana (cannabis) cultivation racket being run in the backyard of a house by two Russian nationals along a coastal village of Goa. Contraband worth Rs 10 lakh was seized by police, as per media reports.
Superintendent of Police (Crime Branch) Karthik Kashyap told reporters after the seizure that the two Russians — Maxim Moskichev and Artem Seregin — were cultivating marijuana, a banned recreational drug — at a rented premise in Goa’s Siolim village in “laboratory conditions”.
“Crime branch officials have booked the two Russian nationals in two different cases under various sections of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act,” Kashyap said.
The police seized around 30 kg of the banned substance valued at over Rs 10 lakh.
Last year, the Calangute police had arrested two persons for growing cannabis in their backyard at Candolim.
These cultivators supply drugs to clients all over India and Goa is a known destination among consumers who visit the State from all over the country.
A clandestine online network of drug producers, drug peddlers and consumers operated via social media keeps the supply coming as the demand increases.
During the peak tourist season in November, December and January as demand skyrockets, the cultivators churn out local produce worth almost Rs 5 crore in the period, for local sale and export.