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The root of the drug problem needs attention

The news of drug abuse by celebrities in India often makes headlines and the problem of supply of these substances goes unnoticed. Know how big is the problem of drugs in India. Aryan was arrested during a raid by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) on a party being held on a cruise ship in the sea off the coast of Mumbai. According to NCB, a total of 13 grams of cocaine, 21 grams of charas, 22 tablets of MDM banned drug and five grams of MD were recovered in this raid. If you are considering this as a very large quantity, then know that every year two to four tonnes of charas and at least 300 tonnes of ganja are recovered in India. Crores of people consume, apart from this, a total of 69 kg of cocaine was confiscated in the country in 2017. These figures were given by the United Nations-backed International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) in a report in 2018. According to a 2019 report by the Ministry of Social Justice, Government of India, cannabis, ganja, charas and opium are consumed the most in the country after alcohol.

According to the report, in 2018, at least 30 million people consumed cannabis, ganja and charas and at least 2.26 crore people used opium, doda, fukki and heroin. Apart from these, the intake of stimulants like cocaine (0.10 percent), amphetamines (0.18 percent) and hallucinogen substances (0.12 percent) was comparatively less. The highest consumption of cannabis, ganja and charas was found in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Sikkim, Chhattisgarh and Delhi. The maximum use of opium and its different types was found in Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram. Opium Farming The United Nations’ Drugs and Crime Association (UNODC) states that India is right in the middle of the world’s two largest illegal opium production areas.

These are called Golden Crescent and Golden Triangle. Because of this, India is not only a big way of trading opium and its different types but it is also a destination. Illegal opium is still grown in large quantities inside the country, which is a matter of concern in itself. Opium is used in some food products and also as a medicine, for which NCB gives license to grow it in controlled quantities. But in 2017, illegal opium cultivation was found on more than 3,000 hectares of land, as against 2,322.5 hectares of land that allowed legal cultivation of opium. These farms were destroyed. In the same year, illegal cultivation of cannabis was also found and destroyed on more than 3,400 hectares of land. Help from Corruption How big a market for such drugs in India can be gauged from their prices.

According to a 2010 UNODC report, the price of heroin in the wholesale market in India at that time was Rs 2 lakh per kg. Half a gram of heroin was available in the open for Rs 600-800. The cost of half a gram of brown sugar was Rs 250-350. Similarly, hashish was priced at Rs 13,500 per kg in the wholesale market but was also available in retail at Rs 35,000 per kg in many parts of the country. The wholesale price of ganja was around Rs 400 per kg, but it was available on the roads for Rs 4,000 – 6,000 per kg. These are old prices and from them it can be estimated that what would have been the size of their market in India. It is believed that due to having so much money in illegal drug trade, corrupt officials also get involved in it and the business continues with their connivance.

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