Laws Related To Drugs In India

The menace of drug addiction leads to the vicious cycle of immense human misery and illegal production, distribution and consumption of drugs. The unlawful distribution and consumption of drugs have given rise to criminal activities and violence worldwide.

There are many reasons that make drug abusers out of people; it includes peer pressure, loneliness, depression, and the feeling that using drugs is “cool.” The abuse of drugs often results in physical and mental disorders, such as physical dependence on drugs, withdrawal symptoms and damage to the nerve cells.

The government of India has enacted the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985, to regulate and control operations related to narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. The Act extends to the whole of India. Here are some important definitions under the Act:

  • Addict: A person addicted to any narcotic drug or psychotropic substance
  • Board: The Central Board of Excise and Customs constituted under the Central Boards of Revenue Act, 1963 (54 of 1963).
  • Cannabis plant: Any plant of the genus cannabis

Indian Laws on Drugs: Prohibitions, Control and Regulation

Certain activities that are prohibited under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985, are:

  • Cultivation of coca plant or collection of a portion of coca plant.
  • Cultivation of cannabis plant.
  • Production, manufacture, possession, sale, buying, transportation, consumption, import and export of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances except for medical and scientific uses.
  • The above mentioned acts are pertaining up to the limits as per the provisions of the Act or as per the rules pertaining to the requirement of license, permit or authorization.

 The Central Government holds powers pertaining to the permit, control and regulations of narcotic drug or psychotropic substance, which include:

  • Permitting or regulating the cultivation, collection, transportation, sale, purchase, import and export of coca plant.
  • The Central Government may permit cultivation of opium on its own account.

It may permit export from India or sale of opium or opium derivatives to the State Government or to manufacturing chemists from the factories of the Central Government.


the term social justice was first used in 1840 by a Sicilian priest, Luigi Taparellid’Azeglio, and given prominence by Antonio RosminiSerbati in La CostitutioneCivile Secondo la Giustizia Sociale in 1848. It has also enjoyed a significant audience among theorists since John Rawls book.

A Theory of Justice has used it as a pseudonym of distributive justice. The concept of social justice is a revolutionary concept which provides meaning and significance to life and makes the rule of law dynamic.

When Indian society seeks to meet the challenge of socio-economic inequality by its legislation and with the assistance of the rule of law, it seeks to achieve economic justice without any violent conflict. The ideal of a welfare state postulates unceasing pursuit of the doctrine of social justice.

That is the significance and importance of the concept of social justice in the Indian context of today.

The idea of welfare state is that the claims of social justice must be treated as cardinal and paramount. Social justice is not a blind concept or a preposterous dogma. It seeks to do justice to all the citizen of the state.

Democracy, therefore, must not show excess of valour by imposing unnecessary legislative regulations and prohibitions, in the same way as they must not show timidity in attacking the problem of inequality by refusing the past the necessary and reasonable regulatory measures at all.

Constant endeavour has to be made to sustain individual freedom and liberty and subject them to reasonable regulation and control as to achieve socio-economic justice. Social justice must be achieved by adopting necessary and reasonable measures.

That, shortly stated, is the concept of social justice and its implications. Citizens zealous of their individual freedom and liberty must co-operate with democracy which seeks to regulate freedom and liberty in the interest of  social good, but they must be able to resist the imposition of any restraints on individual liberty and freedom which are not rationally and reasonably required in the interests of public good, in a democratic way.

It is in the light of these difficult times that the rule of law comes into operation and the judges have to play their role without fear or favour, uninfluenced by any considerations of dogma or isms. The term social justice is a blanket term so as to include both social justice and economic justice.

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By Hassham

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