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India has become the biggest user of Heroin in South Asia

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India has become a drugged nation. Forty tonnes of heroin is produced in South Asia and India consumes almost seventeen tonnes out of that. India is the source for all heroin supplies to Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka. The United Nations Drug Report of 2011 has said that India is the biggest consumer of heroin. This is contrary to the impression that India is merely being used as a transit place by international drug traffickers to smuggle heroin from Afghanistan to Europe and the United States of America.

India has become the biggest consumer in the South Asian region and the trade is amounting to about one and a half billion dollars. Pakistan is close at India’s heels in exporting heroin to neighbouring countries.

The rising student population in some cities in southern and western India has been the biggest consumer of drugs. Besides heroin and the use of designer drugs, the upwardly mobile population in the metros in India have also been the reason for the rising demand for cocaine.

The report has also stated that there are nearly three million opiate users in India and half of them are synthetic opiates. This is a matter of concern as the illicit cultivation of opium rises across India. The total area under illicit opium cultivation is estimated to be at least seven thousand five hundred hectares.

There is a rising trend in prescription drug abuse as well. In India, buprenorphine, pentazocine and sedatives such as diazepam, promethazine and pheniramine are widely abused.