Marijuana became the forbidden drug in the year 1986. The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 banned the production, sale, and consumption of Marijuana. Considering it's historical and religious relevance, it’s almost hard to eradicate it by merely imposing a ‘law.’ It’s the drug of Lord Shiva; it’s the drug that the ancestors had been consuming for centuries. Though it was banned in the legal books, people in India couldn’t stop so easily. Marijuana has been running in the veins of history, and a law wasn’t sufficient to stop people from consuming this ‘Heavenly Drug.’ Therefore, Marijuana was produced, traded and consumed; but illegally.
Despite the prohibition, the land under cultivation is expanding, and the sales are increasing every day. To buy weed in India is as simple it is to buy weed in Canada, where Marijuana is legal. It will be fair to claim that the act has failed to curb the ‘problem.’
32 years on, Marijuana remains an illegal drug, and the black market continues to grow. If India, somehow, legalizes Marijuana, given is how it will be benefitted.
Eliminating Illegal Activities and Crimes
Considering the rampant use of Marijuana, it’s evident that the NDPC Act,1985 has somewhat failed its purpose. The purpose was to curb the use, but it served the contrary. People defied the law by beginning a cult, which was to use Marijuana right under the nose of the Authorities. The law for the Indian Consumers is a small obstacle that’s easily dodged. To buy Illegal Stuff is ‘Normal.’ ‘Legal’ or ‘illegal’ isn’t a question anymore!
This ‘Normalization’ of illegal activities is threatening thing for a country. Once a person does something illegal and gets away with it, the next time he doesn’t even think twice - that’s human psychology! Mostly youngsters are the users of Marijuana, and this makes all of them a ‘criminal.’ The laws aren’t stringent which gives people a reason to indulge. People, instead of focusing on better things, use their time in finding ways to getting the stuff from the dealer.
Illegal trade is a perpetrator of crimes and in India; drug-related crimes are exorbitantly high in numbers.
Marijuana Addiction is a Rare Thing
Marijuana contains Tetrahydrocannabinol(THC), which is responsible for inducing the ‘high.’ The bio-receptor responsible for addiction mechanisms in the human brain is ∆FoSB. There are studies which highlight the fact that THC has a half-life of fewer than 21 days, which means THC gets flushed out of your system before it can trigger the bio-receptor responsible for inducing addictions. Dependency is generally caused due to prevalent secondary issues which interfere with your mental health. No evidence that consuming marijuana creates any psychological changes that lead to the desire for drugs.
In fact, Marijuana is a gateway to get rid of harder drugs.
Increasing Tax Revenue
If Marijuana is legal and taxed like other goods, the Government stands a great chance to earn massive revenues. The tobacco industry manages to procure 479,800 USD every year, if the same approach is used in case of Marijuana, India can achieve the same.
Alcohol and Cigarettes are far more perilous than Marijuana. Marijuana could be a substitute for traditional cigarettes because it gives a better high and doesn’t harm the lungs as the cigarette does. It’s better than Alcohol as it doesn’t make you lose control and get crazy. Instead, it gives you an enlightened view. Unlike a drunk person, stoners do not indulge in violent fights or rash driving.
Marijuana being a safer alternative gives the Government to take a chance to cut down the sales of Tobacco and Alcohol. Imposing taxes on Marijuana will make sure there are no losses of revenues.
Marijuana Industry is a massive Industry. Instead of having a flourishing industry running illegally, it’s better to legalize it, subject it to regulations and create some Job Opportunities. In the US, the Marijuana Industry is an $8.5 billion industry. By 2020, 250,000 jobs are going to be created. Due to the legalization, 2017 saw an increase of 445 percent in Jobs revolving around Marijuana.
India could do the same. Considering the problematic state of the Employment, legal Marijuana can open up new earning opportunities.
If there is a trade, there surely is production going on somewhere. In India, states like Himachal Pradesh and Kerala grow cannabis. The locals survive on this for their livelihoods. Due to the illegal status of Marijuana, the farmers have to sell it at a low price. Working in an ‘unorganized’ sector has many drawbacks, and these locals face them all.
If Marijuana is legal, the industry will convert into an Organized Sector, and the deprived workers could enjoy regular income, medical facilities, provident funds and paid holidays. A large section of people will be benefitted, and the ‘war on drugs’ targeting the countrymen will end.
Marijuana is claimed as a better drug because of its medical benefits. The chemical properties of Marijuana help to fight Cancer, Glaucoma and Alzheimer’s disease. It induces calm and spurs creativity in the Brain.
With Marijuana being illegal in the country, it is hard to ensure good quality stuff. You never know what kind chemicals are mixed to improve the color, taste, texture or ‘high.’ In the case of adulteration, you cannot go to the consumer court and complaint. The dealer has the free pass to dilute the stuff on his terms. Legalization will help to maintain consistent quality of Marijuana and regulate the productions and sales.
Published by john paret