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Is Marijuana Legal In India?

The short and sweet answer is that Marijuana is actually illegal and prohibited in India. Now, you might be thinking: Then why is bhang legal in India? Well, that’s because bhang is made from the leaves and stem of the cannabis plant, whereas marijuana is made from the mix of leaves, stems, flowers, and fruits of the cannabis plant, which is illegal in India.


What Is The Current Legal Framework For Marijuana In India?

The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act of 1985, is the main law under which drugs, including marijuana, fall in India. In respect to this Act, the growth, manufacture, sale, and use of the flowers and resin (ganja and charas) of the plant are absolutely prohibited. However, its leaves and seeds can be consumed in the form of bhang. Different states have powers to control how bhang is used, however, legally, it is used in some of the festivals. Moreover, the legality of cultivating cannabis for industrial purposes, such as making hemp, varies by state, with some states like Uttarakhand leading the way in commercial cultivation.

Laws in India allow the use of cannabis for medical reasons but under very strict rules. The government here is allowing, as it feels the value of cannabis for health treatments and is allowing study and growth for such uses. Recent policies have started to acknowledge the economic and medicinal benefits of hemp, which is like a variety of cannabis with low psychoactive properties. The growth of the crop is controlled, and the products that come by the wayside as by-products are, in fact, very useful and should not go to waste. For example, it is only the hemp seed that is popularly used in medicine, thus contributing much to the economy by way of opening up employment opportunities.

Enforcement and Penalties

See, the NDPS Act provides strict punishment for the illegal possession, sale, or transport of certain types of drugs derived from marijuana. Ranging from fines to imprisonment for some years, it changes with the quantity involved and the nature of the offense. The law has a strong enforcing power with clear rules on how to handle marijuana-related crime, ensuring that one caught with an illegal type is to face a big consequence.

As some mixed views continued that India should make marijuana legal, others totally supported its complete legalization. Some advocate for its full legalization, citing cultural significance and potential economic and medical benefits, while others caution against it due to health risks and social issues. Some famous people in politics and society have suggested the idea of making the use of marijuana less of a crime by leading to legal actions and talks to think again about its legal status.


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