- Sputnik International, 1920, 07.09.2021
The Taliban (under UN sanctions for terrorist activities) stormed to power in Afghanistan on August 15, 2021, as US-led forces withdrew from the country after 20 years of occupation.

CIA Tip-Off Helped India Confiscate Smuggled Afghan Heroin Worth $24 Bln, Says BJP Parliamentarian

Heroin - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.09.2021
A drug haul from India’s Mundra seaport in the western state of Gujarat has sparked a political slugfest, with the federal opposition Congress Party describing the incident as a “breach of national security”. Congress has demanded a “court-monitored probe” into the affair, accusing federal agencies of laxity.
A tip-off by an intelligence agency of a “friendly nation”, whose chief was recently in India, helped authorities of the south Asian nation to confiscate nearly three tonnes of heroin (a plant-based opioid made from morphine) at a western port, a parliamentarian from India's ruling BJP has claimed.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramanian Swamy's remarks came days after the chief of America's Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), William Burns, led a high-level US delegation to New Delhi on 7 September. During the visit, Burns met the Indian National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, and during the meeting the two top intelligence officials focused on security in Afghanistan.
Swamy said that the Taliban could be transporting more narcotics through and to India in coming days.
Fears have been expressed of late that the poppy trade is a crucial source of income for the Taliban, as it currently faces a financial crunch due to the seizure of Afghanistan's federal funds in US-based financial institutions in the wake of the Islamist militants overrunning the capital city of Kabul on 15 August.
Several media reports, including one by Reuters in August this year, have claimed that the Taliban's resurgence has been bankrolled by charging extortion money from Afghanistan's heroin cultivators.
According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the area under poppy cultivation in Afghanistan increased by nearly 37 percent in 2020, as compared to 2019.
A currency dealer (R) counts US dollars at the Shahzada exchange market in Kabul on 21 June 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 18.08.2021
US' Decision to Freeze Kabul's Assets Will Lead to Inflation, Hurt Poor, Afghan Central Bank Warns
Many governments, including India's, have been expressing concern over a resurgence of drug trafficking from Afghanistan.
The issue of an “uncontrolled flow of drugs” from Afghanistan was flagged by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in an online speech during the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation-Collective Security Treaty Organisation (SCO-CSTO) Outreach Summit in Dushanbe (Tajikistan) on 17 September.
The SCO member states also called for establishing “an effective system of jointly combating the drug threat, to establish a reliable barrier to the cultivation, production, manufacture and illicit trafficking of narcotic drugs” in a joint declaration adopted at the heads of state summit this month.

One of the Largest Drug Hauls in India to Date

The seizure of 2,988 kilograms of heroin from the Mundra port in Gujarat state, lying on India’s western seaboard, is said to be the one of the biggest hauls by the country to date. The street value of the seized narcotics is suggested by some to be over $24 billion.
According to an official release dated 22 September, the drugs were concealed in two containers that originated in Kandahar and came to India through the Iranian port of Bandar Abbas.
India’s federal anti-smuggling agency, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), detected the containers on 13 September, just days after Burns’ India visit.
While the containers were declared to contain “semi-processed talc stones”, detailed examinations on 17 and 19 September revealed that they contained heroin.
Subsequent to the heroin discovery, Indian police carried out “follow-up” operations in New Delhi and other places including Noida, Chennai, Coimbatore, Ahmedabad, Mandvi, Gandhidham, and Vijayawada, according to a government statement.

“A total of eight persons, including four Afghan nationals, one Uzbek national and three Indians have been arrested in the case so far,” the Indian government said.

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