NEW DELHI: Contrary to the impression that India is being used as a transit point by international traffickers to smuggle Afghan heroin to both Europe and the US, the United Nations drug report, 2011, has said that India is the biggest consumer of heroin. Of the 40 tonnes produced in south Asia, nearly 17 tonnes are consumed in India, the biggest consumer in the region with the trade valued at $1.4 billion.
Besides its own consumption, India is the source for all supplies of heroin to Bangladesh and Nepal, at least half of what is consumed in Sri Lanka, and the rest is smuggled to the Island nation via Pakistan.
While speaking at the release of the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) annual drug report for 2011, Narcotics Control Bureau director general O P S Malik said the rising student population in some cities in south and western India has been the biggest consumer of drugs.
Besides heroin and designer drugs use, the upwardly mobile population in metros have also been reason for India's rising demand for cocaine. More than 23 kg of cocaine was seized in Mumbai last year, a small percentage of the total consumption.
INCB, a UN agency, reports that only 15 out of 40 tonnnes of heroin produced in the region was trafficked towards south-east Asia, Africa, North America, China and Europe. The rest all was consumed in the region, and majority of them is in India.
The report estimates nearly three million opiate users in India, half of them being synthetic opiates. And of the 17 tonnes of pure heroin used, eight tonnes are of Afghan origin and nine tonnes are indigenously manufactured.
The report expresses concern for the rising illicit cultivation of opium across India. "In India, the total area under illicit opium cultivation is estimated to be at least 7,500 hectares," it said. In 2010, a total of 1,022 hectares of illicitly cultivated opium poppy were eradicated by anti-narcotics agencies. The UN Office of Drugs and Crime has said that there has been some diversion from the licit opium cultivation too.
It also points out rising trend of prescription drug abuse. India has been blamed for smuggling of these drugs to both its neighbours and western nations. In India, Buprenorphine, pentazocine and sedatives such as diazepam, promethazine and pheniramine are widely abused.
What is there to be reported? Is this supposed to be shocking? Our population is 50% of the entire South Asia. If it was smaller country at top of the list that it would been shocking and news worthy. This is just a way to fill up empty spaces in the newspaper.
^^ I don't believe in all this "morality" nonsense. I am practical, and I understand that the nation does have drug abuse.
However, to find out whether the problem is at a critical level or whether the problem is still at manageable levels, talking of the absolute numbers is utter bullshit, and a waste of paper. The reporter who wrote the article needs to be asked to print it and use it as toilet paper for 52 weeks.
Your "per capita or whatever nonsense" as you put it, is the only thing that makes sense here, if you look at it statistically. People who don't know statistics and mathematics go around making a hue and cry with statements like "biggest consumer in South Asia". How can that idiot reporter compare a nation of 1300 million and 180 million? Of course India will be the "biggest consumer in South Asia"!
ok, here is the deal, stop taking what i say personally, that percapita part was for you. Hypocrit part is for Indian society as general. You yourself was there on the debate about gay rights. Indian hypocrisy is the worst in the world. But i stand by what i said, even very low percapita or any statistics non sense is stupid because as per the morality of Indian society here we are supposed to be heroin free!
They are smuggling tons of it into Punjab from Pakistan. ISI after flooding the economy with fake 500Rs now is turning all youngsters to drugs... See the stats and it would have gone up only recently..
I remember reading about this a year or 2 back, so shouldn't things be improving instead of going up? Or is it another case of "only in India"? I mean in most other countries, if a problem is recognised, a plan of action is implemented and things improve, not get worse!
Despite building the "great wall of India", the 24/7 lighted border fence, which is even visible from outer space - if we still say that drugs are coming from Pakjab to Punjab as blackwater is saying - we need to kill several BSF officers and set an example. The only learning we need to take from such things - give a few BSF officers such brutal punishment that the next ones think hundred times before allowing anything through.