Report on Magnitude of Substance Use in India

February 22, 2019
6 months

Why in news?

The Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment recently released the 'Magnitude of Substance Use in India' report.

What is the report on?

  • It is based on a survey conducted by the National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre (NDDTC) under the AIIMS, Delhi.
  • The survey was sponsored by the ministry of social justice and empowerment.
  • It covered general population (10-75 years) in all the 36 states and union territories.

What are the highlights?

  • Alcohol/Liquor - India is home to 6 crore alcohol 'addicts', and there are 16 crore people who consume alcohol.
  • Nearly 1.6% women and 27.3% men in the country use alcohol.
  • The consumption level is very high among the male population and many fall in the age bracket of 18-49 years.
  • Also, 1.3% of children (ages 10-17) are alcohol users, as opposed to 17.1% in the 18-plus age group.
  • States with high prevalence are Chhattisgarh (35.6%), Tripura (34.7%), Punjab (28.5%), Arunachal Pradesh (28%) and Goa (28%).
  • Among women, states with the largest prevalence of alcohol use are Arunachal Pradesh (15.6%) and Chhattisgarh (13.7%).
  • Among children, a high prevalence was found in Punjab (6%), West Bengal (3.9%) and Maharashtra (3.8%).
  • Country liqour (Desi Sharab) accounts for 30% of the total liquor consumption.
  • Indian made foreign liquor (spirits) also account for the same amount.

  • Drugs - More than 3.1 crore Indians (2.8%) have reported using cannabis products (Bhang, Ganja, Charas, Heroin and Opium) in last one year.
  • At the national level, Heroin is most commonly used substance followed by pharmaceutical opioids, followed by opium (Afeem).
  • Cannabis consumption is higher than the national average in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Sikkim, Chhattisgarh and Delhi.
  • In Punjab and Sikkim, the prevalence of cannabis use disorders is considerably higher (more than thrice) than the national average.
  • Sedatives and inhalants - Less than 1% or nearly 1.18 crore people use sedatives, non medical or non prescription use.
  • Strikingly, its prevalence is high among children and adolescents.
  • Addiction of children is more prevalent in U.P, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Delhi and Haryana.
  • At national level, there are 4.6 lakh children that need help against the harmful or dependence over inhalants.
  • Injection of drugs - 8.5 lakh people in the country inject drugs.
  • Users of opium-based drugs report high incidence of injecting drug.
  • A large number of these drug users report risky injecting practices.
  • It is more prevalent in U.P, Punjab, Delhi, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Haryana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Manipur and Nagaland.

How accessible is the treatment?

  • In general, access to treatment services for drug or alcohol addicts are grossly inadequate.
  • Nearly one in five alcohol users suffers from dependence, and alcoholism is a condition that requires medical attention.
  • But only less than 3% of the people with drinking problem get any treatment in India.
  • Only one person in 38 alcohol addicts is getting any treatment, and one in 180 addicts is getting inpatient treatment at a hospital.
  • 72 lakh of 'other drugs' users are addicted to them, but only one in 20 drug addicts seems to be receiving in patient treatment for drug addiction.


Source: Financial Express, Indian Express

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