Poppy eradication drive kicks off in Surkhrod district
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): The outlawed poppy crop on 75 acres of land was destroyed as an eradication campaign was launched in the Surkhrod district of eastern Nangarhar province, an official said on Monday.
Counter-Narcotics Director Idrees Sapi told Pajhwok Afghan News the banned plants were destroyed in the first day of the campaign, which would also be extended to other areas of the province.
Last year, opium poppies were cultivated on 1,017 hectares of land but the government eradicated 250 acres. But the area of land sown with poppies this year is not known,
However, authorities believe the poppy cultivation level has risen this year. Provincial Council Secretary Zabihullah Zmarai warned farmers would be able to harvest opium if the government delayed the eradication effort.
He blamed the government for failing to conduct an effective eradication campaign. The authorities had not provided growers with alternative livelihoods or financial support in exchange for poppy eradication.
Separately, police recovered 50.5 kilograms of hashish in Behsud district and arrested two individuals. Police spokesman Col. Hazrat Hussain Mashraqiwal said the illicit substance was captured in at the Samarkhel check-point.
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