India's Women and Child Development Minister, Maneka Gandhi on Sunday suggested that the psychoactive drug -- marijuana – should be legalised in India for medical purposes.
This suggestion was made by Gandhi at a meeting of a group of ministers (GoM), chaired by Rajnath Singh, that had analysed the draft cabinet note National Drug Demand Reduction Policy, according to Press Trust of India.
"In some of the developed countries like the US, marijuana has been legalised which ultimately results in less drug abuse," Maneka informed.
"The possibility of the same maybe explored in India", the document revealed.
Developed countries like US have legalised the use of marijuana in order to restrain drug abuse in many parts of its states.
Maneka reportedly also stated that marijuana should be legalised for medical purposes as it serves a purpose in relieving cancer symptoms. She also emphasised on the need to administer the regulation of sale and availability of medical drugs like cough syrups such as codeine and inhalants which are being abused in the country.
PM Narendra Modi asked the group of ministers to study the draft policy for drug demand reduction, which aims at curbing the issue of drug and substance abuse in India.
The Ministry of Social Justice had joined hands with AIIMS to carry out a national survey on drug abuse, which covered sex workers and transgenders as well. Gandhi advised covering children staying in and around major railway stations in the survey, and also setting up de-addiction centres in close proximity to such areas. Keeping in mind the huge population and the literacy rate, she said, the possibility can be explored in the future.
"It may not be appropriate to legalise such drugs" said G Latha Krishna Raosaid , the Social Justice and Empowerment Secretary, as quoted by The Indian Express.
According to the document Ananth Kumar, the Minister for Chemicals and Fertilisers asked for chalking up a quick action plan in order to spread awareness among students regarding drug abuse, as drugs are easily available outside educational institutions in the country.