India's First International News Journal

India's First International News Journal

Monday, July, 4, 2022

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Is the cultivation of cannabis legalized?

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Nepal is considering legalizing the cultivation and export of cannabis. The advance comes from the ranks of the Communist Party that rules the Himalayan state.

Unlike in many other countries, the Communist Party does not live in shadow in Nepal: the group, which is Marxist-Leninist-Maoist-oriented, has a large majority both in the national parliament and in all seven regional assemblies. Prime Minister Sharma Oli, who is also party chairman, has been in office since 2015.

Now there is an advance from the ranks of the Communists with the aim of helping the starving economy in an unconventional way. In Nepal, the cultivation, consumption, and export of cannabis are to be legalized soon. Cannabis for medical purposes is now allowed in Canada, the United States and many countries in Europe, argues MP Sher Bahadur Tamang, who is driving the initiative. Foreign pharmaceutical companies could soon pay attractive prices to Nepalese farmers. Tamang has no doubt that local farmers are in the best position to stand out from the competition on the world market: the farmers who are currently illegally growing cannabis achieved excellent results, says the politician, who was Minister of Justice until 2018 and himself, therefore, knows about drugs. Nepalese cannabis has a pleasingly high THC content, which can be increased with sensible breeding methods.

The hemp plant has great cultural significance in Nepal and has been used in religious ceremonies since ancient times. On the birthday of the Hindu deity Shiva in February, it is part of the holiday ritual in many families to smoke a big joint together. The fact that Nepalese hash was of excellent quality and dirt cheap attracted thousands of hippies to Kathmandu in the 1960s and 1970s. To put an end to the permanent party, the government passed a narcotics law in 1978. Since then, Nepal’s hemp plants have grown in the penumbra of illegality, but also seem to thrive there.

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Author

Muzaffar Ahmad Noori Bajwa
Muzaffar Ahmad Noori Bajwa
Counter-terrorism expert, research scholar and editor of The Eastern Herald.

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