License needed for opium cultivation in India
The image of a common Indian farmer flashes in the mind as soon as the mention of farming comes. The Indian farmer who sat on the tractor-bull cart. We can often see you in the fields and barns, wrapped around the head. In such a situation, it becomes necessary to know about a cultivation or crop, which is not easy for every Indian farmer to do. Even if a farmer planted a plant of this crop in the field without the permission of the government and he was caught. So only one ‘illegal plant’ present in his field can feed such a farmer till the air of jail.
Let us know what kind of farming or crop is there, which the Indian farmer cannot do without the permission of the government. Whereas, for the production of this farming, the Taliban government in Afghanistan is openly bent on getting it done. Ever since the Taliban rule has taken over Afghanistan, it has been trying to find new ways to grow this crop there. This is the cultivation of ‘Opium’ (Afeem Farming Business). Whereas in a vast and agricultural country like India, it is ‘illegal’ to cultivate opium without the permission of the government.
85% opium cultivation in Afghanistan
Permission for this cultivation is obtained from the Government of India. Whereas the responsibility of monitoring its production lies with the Narcotics-Drugs Department. So that smuggling of opium can be stopped. The Indian government has recently issued a new policy for the cultivation of opium for the year 2020-2021. If we look at the cultivation (yield) and consumption of opium around the world, then opium cultivation is the highest in the world in Afghanistan.
It is here (Afghanistan) that 80-85% of the world’s opium is produced. The main reason behind the production of opium in Afghanistan has been to be the biggest source of income for the Taliban. Whether the Taliban were in power or not, even then. If Afghanistan is considered to be the largest producer of opium in the world, then from there it also has the highest smuggling in the world.
Understand Taliban’s view on opium cultivation
In today’s changed circumstances, Haji Abdul Haq Akhond Hamkar, deputy minister of Afghanistan’s Interior Ministry Counter Narcotics, says, “The option of possible legalization of opium cultivation in the country (Afghanistan) in the coming times is open. If this crop does not prove to be harmful for the local people (Afghanistan).” According to media reports, Mawlawi Noor Ahmed Saeed, the Director of Information and Culture in Kandahar, also confirms this. According to Saeed, “If it is possible then it would be best to work on legalizing its cultivation. This is sure to help strengthen the country’s (Afghanistan) economy.”
When it comes to Afghanistan and opium cultivation, it is also worth mentioning here that Afghanistan is the only country in the world where high quality heroin is produced and then it is also smuggled the most. The current Taliban government, which is on the verge of starvation, has also understood this fact that, to overcome the economic crisis, it will have to increase the production of opium and heroin in the country. Quoting some media reports, it is revealed that, a few days ago, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has also confirmed this thinking of the Taliban.
Opium in ‘medicine’ somewhere in ‘earning’
According to UNODC, “the Taliban rely heavily on the opium trade as one of their main sources of income.” Countries like Australia and Turkey also use opium legally to make many painkillers. Opium cultivation and smuggling of drugs such as heroin around the world is the main source of income for the Taliban, mainly in the northern and southern parts of Afghanistan. However, amidst all the sensational facts mentioned above, it is necessary to bring one more fact to light here.
It is a fact that a few days ago Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid had mentioned that “the trade of drugs will not be allowed under the Taliban.” Two or three days after his announcement, opium prices in Afghanistan started to skyrocket. It was found that after that announcement in Afghanistan, the price of opium increased from $ 70 per kg to $175 to $ 200 per kg. It is said that during the last 20 years, America also tried to cultivate opium in Afghanistan.
Since it did not have the support of the Taliban, the main producers of deadly and valuable drugs like opium and heroin then. So America abandoned the intention of cultivating opium in Afghanistan. Let us now talk about such opium cultivation keeping India in mind. For its cultivation in India, the concerned farmer has to take a drug license. It is also illegal to plant a sapling for the cultivation of opium without obtaining a license from the Drugs Department.
Difference in opium cultivation of India-Afghanistan
Even if found violating the laws of opium cultivation, the punishment of both jail and fine can also be fixed. Not only this, if a farmer who has taken a license to grow opium (cultivation), could not produce opium of at least the prescribed weight, then his drug license is also in danger. Meaning, getting a license to cultivate opium is not the same as achieving victory for the farmer. He also has to produce opium in the prescribed quantity and hand it over to the Indian government.
Many such institutes of the Department of Narcotics are present in the country which continue to do research on opium. From here the license holder farmer also gets the seeds of this cultivation at the right price. As far as the breeds of opium grown in India are concerned, the most prevalent varieties are Jawahar Opium-16, Jawahar Opium-539 and Jawahar Opium-540. According to an estimate, 7-8 kg of poppy seeds are required for cultivation per hectare. Only and only the Narcotics Department can buy the opium produced by the Hindustani farmer.
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