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Cannabis and Hemp boon or bane to India?

Updated: May 10, 2023

Cannabis has been used in India for thousands of years, and the Vedas refer to the plant as one of the five most sacred plants. However, cannabis is often associated with drugs and illegal consumption, and the cultivation of cannabis species for the purpose of hemp seeds in India shall comply with the NDPS Act, 1985 and rules made thereunder. Regulated industrial hemp plants in India contain primarily CBD and its extracts usually contain less than 0.3% THC, which does not give a "high". Hemp seeds from plants that have less than 0.3% THC are recognized as "food" by FSSAI (India). In 2016, Uttarakhand became the first Indian state to permit large-scale commercial hemp cultivation.


There are many pieces of evidence about Cannabis being used to treat pain as far back as 2900 BC, cannabidiol (CBD) being responsible for its pain-relieving effect, treating pain related to multiple sclerosis and arthritis. The tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content in industrial hemp regulated by international laws states 0.3% by dry weight or less. For Medical Cannabis the percentage may hover over 3% and can be up to 10-15% of THC, in case of recreational purposes the percentage is usually above 10% so here we get to grow hemp as Hemp has lower concentrations of THC and higher concentrations of CBD, which decreases or diminishes any of its psychoactive effect of being high.

Here are some references related to the use of cannabis for pain relief:

  • Medicinal cannabis has gained traction as a possible treatment for chronic pain[1]

  • Cannabis can be helpful in treating neuropathic pain[2][3]

  • Chronic pain relief is the most common condition cited by patients using cannabis for medical purposes[4]

  • Cannabis is rarely the first drug used to treat pain[5]

Dr. Jitendra Singh- Minister of State stated- “There is a fine line between use, misuse, and abuse of a substance, it is our responsibility to draw that line”. Very finely said I guess we are moving in that direction with Uttarakhand & Uttar Pradesh have developed an official set of policies governing the research and cultivation of Hemp. It is not only industrially beneficial to us but it also has various other medicinal and health benefits.

Cannabis Hemp can help with diabetes prevention, anti-tumor effects, substance abuse treatment, and antipsychotic effects too, an entire article with only its health benefits would also seem less but here I want to mention how it can be a game-changer for India.

The growing cycle of hemp is approximately 108 to 120 days, a shorter yield cycle where we can produce more paper from it at any given time, hemp if grown in one acre could help produce

as much paper as four acres of timber. It is a viable source of paper and a source of quality fiber. The plant absorbs toxins and radiations from the soil, it can be an amazing chance for the farmers to grow a fast yielding plant.

Literally from its seeds to its stalk, leaves, and

flowers, everything is used to create industrial goods even cosmetics. The life of farmers in India couldn’t get any better and we wait for other states too, to permit the cultivation of Hemp and research for medicinal uses. We have come so far with Cannabis Hemp and maybe we get to witness the legalization of cannabis for recreational use also someday mostly with certain guidelines I suppose, but we hope that day is soon enough.


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