Drugs and Alcohol Problem in Sri Lanka
Sri Lankan National Dangerous Drugs Control Board (NDDCB) is the pioneer and the statutorily responsible state body for drug abuse management in Sri Lanka. It co-ordinates prevention, treatment, rehabilitation, enforcement, research and other activities aimed at reducing harm from dangerous drugs and its eventual eradication.
Cannabis is the only plant (drug) that is cultivated illicitly in Sri Lanka. It is mostly cultivated in the dry zone in Eastern, North Eastern and Southern provinces. The estimated land area under cannabis cultivation is nearly 500 hectares. Little labour and other simple inputs are sufficient to give a good cannabis yield compared to other cash crops, and it has very few natural pests. Observations on seized cannabis cultivations imply that modern agricultural methods are being used for this as well. A more potent variety of cannabis with more flowering tops has become popular among the young drug users recently.
Sri Lanka’s experience in dealing with drugs of abuse and with the drug abuse problem is unique in many ways. In the wake of ethnic problems, there has been an increase in the involvement of Sri Lankan nationals in smuggling drugs across national frontiers.