The drug trade on the darknet has positively risen since the shutdown of the Silk Road Market in 2016. It has attracted traffic from all over the world, but one sector of the users that have contributed greatly to the booming of this online trade are Indians.
As a result, the rate of overdose has only increased dramatically in India and the world at large. Though the India Darknet users see this as a way of engaging in all kinds of illegal trades in the Dark, the Police and other stakeholders are trying all possible means to bring them to custody.
India provides the largest group Darknet users in Asia, on most of the Darknet market platforms. Ello is a Darknet website, and the CEO and co-founder, Paul Budnitz revealed to reporters that “More than half of the Ello’s users are outside the US. The largest user group in Asia is in India.”
This confirms the fact that Indians have contributed immensely to the booming of the drug trade online. In fact, the Oxford Internet Institute has said that India has an estimated of 500,000 to 1 million users daily on the Tor browser. The Tor browser is a network that hosts the Darknet beyond the reach of ordinary browsers.
The police, however, think it is difficult to arrest any Darknet users in the country since drugs are delivered to buyers physically. According to the KCS Raghuveer, the Assistant Commissioner of Police: “Till now there has been no case reported to us involving drugs bought or sold on Darknet. If there is a case, it is not impossible to catch hold of the drug peddlers since drugs have to be delivered physically.” He added that there are good infrastructures in place which can help trace these drug peddlers.
There has been a report that the Indian government is trying to formulate local laws to prevent the rate of use on the Darknet.
India drug vendors are found on Darknet markets selling various kinds of drugs such as opioids, dissociatives, ecstasy, and steroids, Cannabis, prescription drugs, and even erectile dysfunction medicines.
It is reported that the Indian drug dealers also sell prescription drugs like Benzodiazepines, painkillers like tramadol and other kinds which are found among drug addicts.
The excise and prohibition department exposed that some students even get addicted to drugs in some educational institutions. The level of Indian Darknet users had an effect on the kids in the streets and in the classroom. Some men were arrested early this year for selling drugs to students.
This influx has made a senior police official expressed an opinion in defense of reporting students who are found to be drug dealers to their parents. He said, when school management notices a student doing wrong, it will bring the matter to the notice of his/her parents in an attempt to redirect the ways of the student.
The booming Darknet drug trade may benefit the website founders and other users of the platform, but the negative impact which includes high drug overdose death and destruction of the future of the kids has called for measures to be taken.
The senior police officer hinted some of the measures taken to curtail the influx of Darknet by Indians: “the excise enforcement officials wrote letters to schools/college managements asking them to take measures to sensitize their students on effects of drug abuse after a few students were found purchasing drugs from peddlers. The government must appreciate the police for cracking a whip on drug peddlers.’’
In Bengaluru, officers reported a 100% increase in drug trade. The Chennai zonal director of the NCB, Prem Anand Sinha said some time ago that India has become the cocaine trafficking center for other countries. This is possible through the Darknet marketplace where buyers place their order and are delivered to them through the postal services.
The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in a 2013 annual report released that about 47kgs of cocaine was seized from traffickers in 2013. The number of cocaine cases rises from 72 in 2012 to 78 in 2013. It further rises to 82 in 2014 to 100 in 2015. The trafficking cases rise year after year, and it is by no mistake when India is seen as an integral contributor of the global drug trade.
Anurag Sharm, the DGP had therefore held a meeting with the police commissioner and SPS on Friday to be sensitive to drug dealers around.