In the official gazette by the central government, the act of Narcotic Drugs And Psychotropic Substance characterized drugs like opium, poppy straw, coca leaf, cannabis, derivatives of all the aforementioned substances, and other narcotic substances.
The psychotropic substance can be a term to include any natural or synthetic substance specified in the schedule of the narcotics drugs and psychotropic substance act.
The NDPS act not only punish the edges of the culprit but also the whole area of crime. As it not only correct the possession of drugs or psychotropic substance but also the purchase, sale, transport, and consumption.
But there are many narcotics drugs and psychotropic substances that are used for scientific or medical purposes. So they are exempted from the severity of the law. As poppy straw is used for medical reasons for the manufacturing of medicine.
If we talk about the exceptions that how anyone gets permission to use narcotics drugs and psychotropic substances for any scientific or medical purpose, then one who wants to use can obtain the required permit or authorization from the government.
Punishment if a person is found with Narcotic Drugs?
The gravity of punishment under the NDPS act depends upon the amount of the narcotic drugs or the psychotropic substance is found. Two quantity categories are derived as small quantity and commercial quantity.
Small quantity refers to being a quantity more than a government-specified quantity. The amount of drugs is also notified by the government for both small and commercial quantities for various drugs.
|S. No.||Narcotics drugs and psychotropic substance||Small quantity||Commercial quantity|
|1.||Cocaine||2 grams||100 grams|
|2.||MDMA||0.5 gram||10 grams|
|3.||Cannabis||100 grams||1 kg|
specified by the government
In the table, we can see the limits of 2 grams and 100 grams in cocaine that signifies that if the quantity is between 2 and 100 then it will come under a small quantity and if it’s more than 100 grams then it drops under commercial quantity. And same goes with the MDMA(3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine) and cannabis according to the given table.
MDMA is a synthetic drug and derivative of amphetamine and a branch of the phenethylamine group of chemicals.
Punishment under Narcotic Drugs And Psychotropic Substance Act, 1985
As the quantity of the drugs found to be increased from small quantity to commercial quantity the rigidity of punishment also increases under the NDPS act.
As we have already discussed that if the frontiers of 2 grams and 100 grams in cocaine that means we can assume that the amount is somewhere in the range of small quantity and assuming it’s more than 100 grams, it drops under commercial amount. But the amount may be less than 2 grams then there may be no case charge.
In the small quantity case, there are chances to get a punishment of one year of imprisonment and a fine of ten thousand or can be more rigor. For the commercial quantity, the punishment is harder that includes imprisonment of ten to twenty years and a fine of up to two lakhs.
There will be extended punishment if a person commits the same amount of crime again & again. The fine and imprisonment will one or half time the maximum specified terms.
The Narcotic Drugs And Psychotropic Substance Act 1985 also give more power to judges to increase a fine by more than two lakhs while providing the reason for the same in the final judgment.
Is Crimilization the only solution ?
There can be a question in our mind that is criminalization the only solution for betterment? So the answer is no because apart from fines and imprisonment there is also an existence of rehabilitation. It is more beneficial for the people who consume drugs for the first time. And also for the people who get caught in small quantities.
There can be de-criminalization but only in the case of small quantities. And for sure de-criminalization is not a good option. But with this rehabilitation is also important and especially for the people who are caught for the first time or in small quantities. The punishment for those people who involve in the sale, transport is more rigorous than the people who involve in the consumption.
As the nature of the offenses is serious, so there is no sentence granted under the NDPS Act that can be driven except the sentence conferred for consumption. And there is almost no commutation allowed in such types of cases.
Suspicion of purpose:
Under the NDPS Act, while prosecuting it was assumed that the accused had a purpose for the completion of the offense and it’s up to the accused that he has to prove his innocence. And to show that he had no such mental health to do all this. This indicates the burden of proof is totally reflected by the accused.
If the accused has not been found with the possession then there may chance that he is innocent and get a positive side. But if he has possession and next he is neglecting then he is considered to do the offense, until and unless the converse is proved.
The offense will account even if you are not consuming it and you only have possession.
Appeals and Bail in NDPS Act 1985
Under the NDPS Act, the appeals are heard by the High court. The authorities can arrest the accused without obtaining a warrant that shows that every offense is punishable irrespective of the quantity. The issue of bail is an argumentative one. According to Section 37 of the NDPS act, all offenses under NDPS are non-bailable.
If the person has not consumed the drug but he/she is a part of the whole drug chain then the same will follow as the offense is non-bailable. The public prosecutor should be given a chance to oppose the bail of the accused and should have to present reasonable proofs, and the court must be satisfied.
Immunity factor under Narcotic Drugs And Psychotropic Substance Act
An addict who is convicted for the consumption of a drug involving small quantities can demand immune from the protection if he is ready to volunteer for deaddiction. The provided immunity will be withdrawn if the volunteer leaves the ongoing treatment incomplete.
If the accused is ready for true disclosure of all the conditions related to the contravention, then may also be rewarded with immunity.
There is also a recent narcotic drug incident in India, which can you get here