Exploring the Cannabis Culture in India

6 Minute Read

In recent years, India has witnessed a profound transformation in its perception of cannabis. What was once shrouded in taboo is now emerging from the shadows, igniting discussions and even gaining acceptance in certain circles.

This seismic shift in attitudes towards cannabis reflects a broader societal evolution, sparking curiosity and intrigue across various sectors. Whether you're a historian delving into ancient traditions, a medical professional exploring new therapeutic avenues, or simply intrigued by shifting social norms, the burgeoning cannabis culture in India offers a captivating journey of exploration.

Unveiling the Mystique of Cannabis

Cannabis is a general name for drugs like hemp, marijuana, and hash that are made from the plant Cannabis sativa. Cannabis has psychoactive properties, which means it can affect the mind and mood of the user. Cannabis contains more than 100 compounds called cannabinoids, the most well-known of which are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). THC is the main substance that causes the high or euphoria that some people experience when using cannabis, while CBD has some potential medical benefits.

Historical Significance of Cannabis in India

Cannabis has a long and continuous history in India, dating back to ancient times. The earliest mention of cannabis can be found in The Vedas, sacred Hindu texts compiled as early as 2000 to 1400 B.C. According to The Vedas, cannabis was considered one of the five sacred plants, and it was believed that a guardian angel resided in its leaves.

Cannabis was regarded as a source of happiness and joy, helping people attain delight and lose fear. It was also associated with the god Shiva, who became known as the Lord of Bhang.

The Vedas also call cannabis a source of happiness, joy-giver, liberator that was compassionately given to humans to help us attain delight and lose fear. It releases us from anxiety.

Current Cannabis Landscape in India

The current cannabis landscape in India is a complex and dynamic one, with various legal, social, cultural, and economic aspects. Cannabis is a plant that has been used for various purposes in India for thousands of years, such as medicine, religion, recreation, and industry. 

Cannabis also has potential medical and industrial uses in India, which are currently underdeveloped due to legal restrictions and social stigma. Cannabis has been used as a traditional medicine in India for various conditions, such as epilepsy, chronic pain, anxiety, insomnia, glaucoma, and PTSD.

There is also a lack of regulation and standardization of medical cannabis products and prescriptions. Currently, only a few states like Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Manipur have allowed or proposed the cultivation of cannabis for medical or research purposes.

Cannabis also has industrial applications in India, especially in the production of hemp fiber and oil. Hemp is a type of cannabis plant that has low levels of THC (the psychoactive compound) and high levels of CBD (the non-psychoactive compound).

Hemp fiber can be used to make textiles, paper, rope, canvas, and biodegradable plastics. Hemp oil can be used to make cosmetics, food supplements, biofuels, and paints. Hemp cultivation can also benefit the environment by reducing soil erosion, water consumption, pesticide use, and carbon emissions.

However, hemp production in India is also hampered by legal barriers and a lack of awareness and infrastructure. Only a few states like Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, and Jammu & Kashmir have allowed or proposed the cultivation of hemp for industrial purposes.

One of the recent developments in the legal status of cannabis in India is the petition filed by the Great Legalisation Movement India Trust to decriminalize the use of cannabis in the Delhi High Court. The petition has challenged the provisions of the NDPS Act that criminalize the use of cannabis as violative of various provisions of the constitution of India.

The petitioner has argued that cannabis has medicinal and industrial benefits and that its prohibition violates the fundamental rights of citizens to health, privacy equality , trade , and religion. The Centre has responded that there is no complete ban on cannabis under the NDPS Act but its use is allowed for medical, scientific industrial , and horticultural purposes by obtaining requisite permissions from respective State Governments and Ministry of Ayush.

The current cannabis landscape in India is therefore a paradoxical one that reflects the historical legacy , cultural diversity , legal ambiguity , social reality , and economic potential of the plant in the country.

There are many challenges and opportunities for the development of a regulated and sustainable cannabis industry in India that can benefit the farmers , consumers , patients , entrepreneurs , researchers , and policymakers alike.

However, this would require a comprehensive and evidence-based approach that considers the legal framework, public health, human rights, social justice, environmental protection, economic development, and cultural sensitivity aspects of cannabis in India.

The Future of Cannabis in India

The future of cannabis in India is a topic that has been gaining attention and interest in recent years, as more countries around the world have legalized or decriminalized cannabis for various purposes. 

The medical potential of cannabis in India is based on its rich history of traditional medicine, as well as its emerging scientific evidence. Cannabis has been used as an ingredient in Ayurvedic medicine for various conditions, such as epilepsy, chronic pain, anxiety, insomnia, glaucoma, and PTSD. 

However, the medical use of cannabis in India faces many challenges and barriers, such as the lack of regulation and standardization of cannabis products and prescriptions, the lack of awareness and education among doctors and patients, the social stigma and legal risks associated with cannabis use, and the competition from other pharmaceutical drugs.

There are also some private companies and NGOs that are working to develop and promote medical cannabis products in India, such as Great Legalisation Movement , Indian Cannabis Research Institute , among others.

The industrial potential of cannabis in India is based on its ideal climatic conditions for cultivation, as well as its diverse applications in various sectors. Cannabis can be used to produce hemp fibre and oil , which have many uses in textiles , paper , rope , canvas , biodegradable plastics , cosmetics , food supplements , biofuels , and paints .

Hemp is a type of cannabis plant that has low levels of THC (less than 0.3%) and high levels of CBD. Hemp cultivation can also benefit the environment by reducing soil erosion , water consumption , pesticide use , and carbon emissions 

However, the industrial use of cannabis in India also faces many challenges and barriers , such as the legal restrictions and confusion , the lack of awareness and infrastructure , the competition from other crops and materials , and the social stigma and legal risks associated with cannabis cultivation .

There are also some private companies and NGOs that are working to develop and promote hemp products in India , such as Indian Industrial Hemp Association , Hemp Foundation , among others .

The industrial and medical future of cannabis in India is therefore a promising but complicated one that requires a comprehensive and evidence-based approach that considers the legal framework , public health , human rights , social justice , environmental protection , economic development , and cultural sensitivity aspects of cannabis in India .

There are many opportunities and benefits for India to harness the potential of cannabis for its people and its economy , but there are also many challenges and risks that need to be addressed carefully . Cannabis is a complex and controversial topic that has many aspects and implications . It is important to be informed and responsible when using or making any decisions about cannabis .

Conclusion 

In conclusion, the evolving cannabis culture in India reflects a complex and dynamic landscape. Rooted in a rich historical tradition, cannabis holds both medical and industrial potential. However, it faces numerous challenges, including legal restrictions, social stigma, and a lack of awareness.

The future of cannabis in India is promising yet intricate, requiring a comprehensive approach that considers legal frameworks, public health, human rights, and environmental sustainability. While opportunities abound, responsible and informed decision-making is crucial as India navigates this multifaceted and controversial topic.

← Older Post Newer Post →

Cbd-Blogs

RSS
READ MORE

How Does Ayurvedic Detox Renew Your Body and Mind?

It is time to understand the science of cleansing for vitality! In our increasingly hectic...

6 Minute Read
Read more
READ MORE

Global Legalization of Medicinal Cannabis: A Comprehensive Overview

As the world evolves, so does our understanding and acceptance of medicinal cannabis. This once-controversial...

12 Minute Read
Read more
READ MORE

Sleeping Pills vs. Essential Oils: Which is the Better Insomnia Solution?

The pursuit of a restful night's sleep can be an tiring journey for those who have...

11 Minute Read
Read more