Bhubaneswar: Cannabis cultivated on 4,407.73 acres in eight districts of Odisha has been destroyed in the 2017-18 season, as against a target of 3,050 acres, an official said on Sunday.
During 2015-16 and 2016-17, this figure was 2,457.73 acres and 3,599.191 acres respectively.
Director General of Police R.P. Sharma said the process to identify cannabis cultivation in other areas was on.
He said a coordinated multidisciplinary approach supplemented by the use of satellites helped in achieving better results in inaccessible/interior areas in Maoist-affected districts like Kandhamal, Boudh, Rayagada, Malkangiri and Koraput.
The DGP said there was a sharp decline in illicit cultivation of cannabis in several districts like Sambalpur, Deogarh, Angul and Nayagarh due to the constant efforts made by the district police and an awareness drive.
During 2017, as many as 420 cases were registered under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 700 persons were arrested and over 1. 861 kg brown sugar and 8,925 bottles of cough syrup were seized.
New guidelines for increased rewards to the officers involved, informers and other persons were issued in 2017 to encourage them to curb illicit cultivation of cannabis, the DGP said.(IANS)