New Delhi: India on Monday introduced a comprehensive national policy to help curb trafficking in narcotic drugs.
"The national policy released today, presents evidence of India's strong commitment and intent to rise to the challenges posed by the drug menace," Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said after releasing the policy documents.
"It also reflects the country's willingness to shoulder the responsibility which is cast upon it because of its strategic position, sandwiched between two major regions of the world producing illicit narcotics," he said.
The policy attempts to curb the menace of drug abuse and contains provisions for treatment, rehabilitation and social re-integration of victims of drug abuse.
"Implementation of the provisions of the policy will lead to reduction of crime, improvement in public health and uplifting of the social milieu," the finance ministry said in a statement.
Mukherjee said as per the new policy different ministries and departments of central and state governments would work together to curb the menace.
"Today, the entire mankind is confronted with the problem of drugs in some form or the other," he said.
According to a United Nations report released in 2011, between 149 and 272 million people or 3.3 to 6.1 per cent of the world's population aged 15-64 used illicit substances at least once in the previous year.
"What is more alarming is the fact that this number has increased since the late 1990s. It is obvious that the international community needs to raise the level of response to the challenge posed by drugs, and India, which is home to one-sixth of the global population, has an added responsibility in this regard," the finance minister said referring to the UN report.