Addictions Report

Substance Abuse in India Survey Report

National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre and All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi under the Ministry of Social Justice and Department, conducted the first Nation wide substance abuse survey in India and published the report Magnitude of Substance Abuse in India 2019

Magnitude of substance use in India

The published report explains the extent of different substance abuse and addiction of alcohol, Cannabis, Opioids, Opium, different kinds of drugs across India.

As per the report the major addictions in India and the different states where it is prevalent are given below.

“Alcohol is the most common psychoactive substance used by Indians(among those included in this survey). Nationally, about 14.6% of the population (between 10 and 75 year of age) uses alcohol. In terms of absolute numbers, there are about 16 crore persons who consume alcohol in the country. Use of alcohol is considerably higher among men (27.3%) as compared to women (1.6%). For every one woman who consumes alcohol,there are 17 alcohol using men.Among alcohol users, country liquor or ‘desi sharab’ (about 30%) and spirits or Indian Made Foreign Liquor(about 30%)are the predominantly consumed beverages. States with the highest prevalence of alcohol use are Chhattisgarh, Tripura, Punjab, Arunachal Pradesh and Goa.

After Alcohol, Cannabis and Opioids are the next commonly used substances in India. About 2.8% of the population(3.1 crore individuals) reports having used any cannabis product within the previous year. The use of cannabis was further differentiated between the legal form of cannabis (bhang)and other illegal cannabis products (ganja and charas). Use of these cannabis products was observed to be about2% (approximately 2.2 crore persons) for bhang and about 1.2%(approximately 1.3crore persons) for illegal cannabis products, ganja and charas. States with the highest prevalence of cannabis use are Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Sikkim, Chhattisgarh and Delhi.

About 2.1% of the country’s population (2.26 crore individuals) use opioids which includes Opium (or its variants like poppy husk known as doda/phukki), Heroin (or its impure form – smack or brownsugar)and a varietyof pharmaceutical opioids. Nationally, the most common opioid used is Heroin(1.14%) followed by pharmaceutical opioids (0.96%) and Opium(0.52%).Sikkim,Arunachal Pradesh,Nagaland,Manipur and Mizoram have the highest prevalence of opioid use in the general population (more than 10%).

The survey indicates that a sizeable number of individuals use Sedatives and Inhalants. About 1.08% of 10-75 year old Indians (approximately 1.18 crore people) are current users of sedatives(non medical,non prescription use).States with the highest prevalence of current Sedative use are Sikkim, Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram. However, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat are the top five states which house the largest populations of people using sedatives.

Inhalants (overall prevalence 0.7%) are the only category of substances for which the prevalence of current use among children and adolescents is higher(1.17%)than adults (0.58%).

Other categories of drugs such as, Cocaine (0.10%)Amphetamine Type Stimulants (0.18%)and Hallucinogens (0.12%) are used by a small proportion of country’s population.”

Source: Magnitude of Substance Abuse in India 2019