Mumbai, Delhi among top 10 cannabis consuming cities in world, also among the cheapest

Mumbai, Delhi among top 10 cannabis consuming cities in world, also among the cheapest
Both Mumbai and Delhi featured in among the top cannabis consuming cities in the world (Inset: Top 10 list, Courtesy: Seedo)

Two Indian cities – Mumbai and Delhi – have featured in the top 10 list of cities with the highest cannabis (marijuana/weed) consumption per year, according to a report by Seedo.

The findings were a part of the Israel-based firm’s report titled ‘2018 Cannabis Price Index‘, which details the cost of marijuana in 120 global cities.

Seedo analyses the legality of marijuana while preparing the final list and derives the price from crowdsourced city-level surveys adjusted to World Drug Report 2017 of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

Both Delhi and Mumbai featured among the top 10 cities in terms of highest cannabis consumption, with a ranking of 3rd and 6th respectively.

The study pegged the total consumption in Mumbai at 32.38 metric tonnes and Delhi at 38.26 metric tonnes for the year 2017.

Mumbai, Delhi among top 10 cannabis consuming cities in world, also among the cheapest 1
Cities with the highest consumption of cannabis in the world (Courtesy: Seedo)

The estimated price per gram in both cities was around the USD 4.5 mark or Rs 285, among the cheapest in the world. The low cost can be attributed to the fact that cannabis grows locally in India’s hilly regions.

According to the study, the top cannabis consuming cities in the world were New York in US and Karachi in Pakistan, with an estimated annual consumption of 77.44 and 41.95 metric tonnes respectively.

The cities, however, were vastly different when it came to pricing. The per gram cost was pegged at USD 10.7 in New York, whereas it was just USD 5.32 in Karachi.

“That illegal cannabis use is so high in countries that still carry the death penalty, such as Pakistan and Egypt, those in power ought to see how desperately new legislation is needed.” said Uri Zeevi, CMO at Seedo.

Law in India:

While cannabis has been consumed in India for many millennia, its use and possession are prohibited under the Narcotic Drugs & Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, 1985.

A person can face up to 6 months imprisonment and/or Rs 10,000 fine in case of use or possession (under one kilogram). However, the law is rarely enforced in case of small amounts. In case of cultivation, the jail term can go as high as 10 years.

Incidentally, government-owned shops in holy cities like Varanasi are allowed to sell cannabis in the form of bhang, primarily consumed during the Hindu festival of Holi.

While marijuana was considered harmful in the last few decades, recent studies have highlighted its medicinal uses and showed that it is less harmful than alcohol and as addictive as caffeine.

The findings have prompted some politicians to call for either decriminalising or legalising its use.

According to government data, marijuana was the most widely traded and consumed illicit substance in the country in 2016.

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