Pubdate: Sun, 11 Jun 2006
Source: Hindustan Times (India)
Copyright: 2006, Hindustan Times Ltd.
Author: Anupam Thapa
Bookmark: (Cocaine)
Bookmark: (Heroin)


The drug story gets an adulterous twist. It's not just the issue of 
cocaine but its adulteration with heroin that has added a new 
dimension to the Rahul Mahajan-Vivek Moitra episode. The fact that 
the cocaine allegedly consumed by the duo was mixed with heroin has 
proved that coke adulteration is reaching a new high.

Adulteration of cocaine with heroin (known as speedball) is not new. 
But what's important is that the quantity of heroin in cocaine is 
getting higher with every change of hand that the packet undergoes. 
According to the cops, "In one case, we found the cocaine sample 
adulterated. And the lab report proved that it was mixed with heroin."

Fouling pure coke

Delhiites enjoy the dubious reputation of being freeloaders and this 
has affected the 'business' of cocaine too. According to a cokehead, 
"Only users who buy directly from the suppliers get pure stuff. Those 
who buy from pushers (users who also peddle it) get impure cocaine, 
which is mixed with heroin or some other substance."

The modus operandi is simple. To get free cocaine, users become 
pushers. They buy uncut cocaine from the dealer, take out a small 
quantity for personal use and mix the rest with heroin for further 
sale. The more hands it changes, the more impure it gets.

According to cops, "Some of the DJs and managers of discotheques in 
Vasant Vihar, South Extension and New Delhi district sell coke. Since 
they are also users, they become pushers to ensure a free supply of 
coke for personal use."

Even in terms of pure business, pushers make money by adulterating 
coke with heroin as a gram of cocaine costs a minimum of Rs 4,000 
while a gram of heroin costs Rs 1,500.

Lethal combo

However, there's another angle to this cocaine-heroin cocktail. Says 
a doctor of Lady Hardinge Medical College, "According to medical 
science, taking cocaine and heroin together (speedball) is deadly. It 
is usually taken for an immediate and sustained high. It can be 
snorted, injected or taken orally. A speedball injection kills the 
user immediately. But even if it is snorted or taken orally, it can 
prove fatal, as in the recent Moitra's case." Speedball is 
potentially lethal because cocaine acts as a stimulant, raising the 
heartbeat, whereas heroin slows the heart. As a result, it is 
possible to experience a delayed overdose.

Thus many drug addicts use speedball in order to achieve the 
purported effect. Some people who use heroin also combine it with 
smoked freebase cocaine (crack) that is known as a moonrock. But 
isn't life worth much more?
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MAP posted-by: Beth Wehrman