India: Government unveils policy to curb illicit narcotic drugs

The government has given its go-ahead to a national policy framework to control and regulate narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances to stop the menace of trafficking and allow private sector to produce poppy straw concentrate.The Union Cabinet approved the National Policy on Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances on Thursday.”This would enable India to retain its status of a traditional supplier of opiate raw material to the rest of world, while remaining competitive,” an official statement said.The government will use satellite imageries for detection and destruction of illicit poppy and cannabis crops. It emphasises on developing alternative means of livelihood for growers in traditional illicit cultivation areas.”The policy attempts to curb the menace of drug abuse and contains provisions for treatment, rehabilitation and social re-integration of victims of drug abuse,” an official release said after the Cabinet meeting.