Drug and Alcohol Addiction in Punjab, India

Roughly 40 percent of those between the ages of 15 to 25 years old in Indian state of Punjab is addicted to some form of narcotics, whether it be heroin addiction or alcohol addiction. 48 percent of the farmers and laborers in the state are also considered to be addicts.

In the neighborhood of Amritsar, thousands of  men have died while in their 20s to 30s due to complications related to their drug addiction. In one school, about 70 percent of the students have lost one parent to drug addiction.

During election season, political parties in India hand out bottles of liquor and heroin to voters in an attempt to get them to vote for their candidates. In the two months of campaigning leading up to the April 20, 2014 voting day, nearly 700,000 liters of alcohol, 150 kilograms of heroin, and 30 tons of opium poppy husk was seized in Punjab. The election commission was receiving up to 60 calls each day of parties illegally handing out items during the campaign season.

(More crime in India statistics.)

Source:  Adi Narayan, “Wives Revolt as India Election Booze Leaves Trail of Widows,” Bloomberg, May 12, 2014.