The NDPS Act : Adequate or Not?

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After the demise of Sushant Singh Rajput, many issues have gotten attention like depression, nepotism and most recently drug use by celebrities in particular. As after the arrest of Rhea Chakraborty in the case related to consumption of drugs many celebrities have been interrogated. Now famous comedian Bharti Singh along with her husband has also been arrested.

What is the NDPS ACT?
NDPS stands for narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. This act was enacted on 14 November,1985. It was made with the purpose to control and prohibit the abuse, use, dissipation, distribution, manufacture and trade of substances. Narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances both are different kinds. The narcotics drug induces sleep while psychotropic substances can alter the mind of an individual. Although, these substances hold importance in the field of medicine. Therefore, this act also deals with the provisions for the cultivation of cannabis, poppy or coca plants and manufacture of any psychotropic substances.

Purpose of this act
The main purpose of this act is to have the control on manufacture, sale and transport of such drugs and substances. Thus, the act bans around 200 psychotropic substances. These drugs can be accessed only with prescription.

What happens if this act is violated?                                                                                        Violation of this law may result in punishment which includes rigorous imprisonment or fine or both. The degree of punishment depends upon the circumstances of the case. It’s completely circumstantial. For example, Whether the drugs were used for personal use or for sale. Under this law if drugs are used for personal purposes then the amount of punishment can be lesser. Although since the establishment of the act it has been amended from time to time but the use of synthetics drugs and designer drugs has made things complicated.

Legal bodies to enforce this act                                                                                                1.Narcotics Control Division
2.The Narcotic Control Bureau
4.Central Bureau of narcotics

Features Of This Act                                                                                                                      One of the important features of this act is that it provides quantity based sentencing. It has been made very clear by the supreme court that the sentencing will be purely based on the quantity used whether or not it is mixed with any neutral substance or not, only the original amount of drug or substance will be taken into consideration. Another important feature is that under this act confession made to drug law enforcement officers is admissible in court as evidence.

Loopholes Of This Act                                                                                                                    The major loophole is that this act does not differentiate between drug peddlers, users and drug traders. The other loophole is that under this act sections 35 and 54 clearly contradicts the principle of criminal jurisprudence, which means that under this act you’re guilty until proven innocent.

Slow Process
Research shows that huge numbers of those captured on drug charges go through years in prison before their cases at last come okay with hearing, an immediate result of the famously moderate movement of the Indian legal framework. Uncommon courts have been set under NDPS Act yet states have given them extra duty as aftereffect of which cases are deferred more. Aside from this when minor wrongdoers invested a great deal of energy in prison there is an opportunity of them being selected in coordinated wrongdoings and packs.

No Data?                                                                                                                                              One of the significant issues in Indian lawmaking is information. The nature and degree of medication use, reliance and its chaperon wellbeing suggestions these things ought to have been the main when outlining NDPS Act however incongruity it is as yet unclear. The main overview with respect to the degree of medication utilized was directed in 2001-2002. As indicated by that review, there were an expected 8.7 million cannabis clients, of which 2.3 million were needy (26%). The quantity of narcotic clients was assessed to be 2 million, of which 0.5 million (22%) were believed to be reliant.

Unfair and Harsh Penalties?
In the same way as other different nations who have shaped laws under the weight of worldwide shows have made the laws excessively cruel as we have just talked about even capital punishment now and again. Raju v. Territory of Kerala AIR 1999 SC 2139: the litigant had served 10 years of thorough detainment and was forced a fine of ₹1 lakh for ownership of 100 mg of heroin worth ₹25. Nonattendance of withdrawal was viewed as proof that the litigant was not drug subordinate and accordingly, the heroin was not implied for individual use. The Supreme Court at long last held that such a little amount couldn’t have been intended available to be purchased or dispersed and decreased the sentence to that for ownership for individual utilization.

Access to Medicines?
The NDPS Act permits the utilization of drugs as medication. However, morphine and different sedatives were inaccessible to patients because of exacting arrangements and punishments. Until ongoing years all these were managed by state governments which implied different licenses were required however from 1998 focal government has assumed control over this yet the circumstances have not improved. Western media questions routinely how India supplies morphine to the world when it can’t gracefully bring it back at home.

Despite the fact that the intentions of this Act are acceptable, there are numerous things that should have been tended to. Ordinarily, it is seen that large players escape and just the last level guilty parties are gotten. There have been reports of how individuals who were just sitting in the vicinity of suppliers were caught and charged under this Act by the police. The Act additionally neglects to give a satisfactory qualification among minor and genuine offenses as far as discipline. Even though big names are in the limelight today, it still doesn’t change the fact that the act needs amendments and major reforms. At long last, these provisions must be connected to secure our lives, spread awareness and accomplish the standards of the Constitution.

Written by Samiksha Grover

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