Drug bust
Picture used only for illustrative purposes Image Credit: Supplied

It almost reads like the script of Breaking Bad. In this case, a chemistry graduate became the master synthesiser of narcotic drugs at the heart of a multi-million dollar drug cartel located in a district outside India’s commercial capital Mumbai. The drugs were transported across India and even globally.

Who is 'Doctor'?

Sardar Patil goes by the moniker of ‘Doctor’ not because he is a medical practitioner but apparently “he was considered one of the best synthesizers of the drug and knew how to manufacture Ketamine, Methamphetamine and also Mephedrone," according to a police official on the case.

The Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) captured him and other gang members in a daring operation that smoked out the mastermind.

It started with the seizure of 129 kilograms of Mephedrone worth Dh28.8 million from a manufacturing unit. As per a news report on www.indiatoday.in, “five people were arrested including the factory owner Jitendra Paramath and four others who handled circulation of the drug across the country” on September 10.

"Interrogation of the five arrested accused revealed that they were not the ones who synthesised the drug and manufactured it, it was one person referred to as Doctor," an ATS officer told the Indian news website.

How did they catch him?

The officer added: "A chemistry graduate, Doctor had improvised the technique of drug manufacturing. We launched a manhunt to nab the Doctor whose real name is Sardar Patil, a native of Sangli district in Maharashtra. He worked at a chemical factory named Omkar industries in Sangli, till 2015. It is at this factory that the Doctor learned and mastered the skill of synthesising synthetic drugs [from Iranian chemical synthesisers] like Ketamine, Meth and Meow."

The Doctor was arrested from his hometown, where he was hiding since the initial drug bust.

What is Mephedrone?

Mephedrone, also known as 4-methyl methcathinone or 4-methyl ephedrone, is a synthetic stimulant drug of the amphetamine and cathinone classes. Slang names include bath salts, drone, M-CAT, White Magic and meow meow. It is chemically similar to the cathinone compounds found in the qat plant.