Friday, March 10, 2006

Alcohol and cannabis


Alcohol

Consumption of alcohol is prohibited in the states of Gujarat, Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland. While the other Indian states legally permit alcohol consumption, social acceptance varies from region to region with public drinking by women being generally less tolerated.

Note that the sale of alcohol is banned on dry days. Used to maintain peace, dry days are observed on major occasions (Independence Day, voting days, etc.) or during festivals.

Cannabis

Cannabis is widely available in India despite being illegal in the vast majority of the country. There is a variation in penalties and enforcement according to the region.

The three available types of cannabis are: bhang (leaves and plant tops), ganja (leaves and plant tops) and charas (resin from the leaves).

Bhang, which is sold at licensed bhang shops in some states, is the most commonly used form of cannabis in religious festivals. It is also part of many ayurvedic medicinal preparation. Bhang can be smoked, mixed to food or used to make bhang lassi.

Bhang lassi (also called Special lassi) is made by blending yogurt with water and bhang. Use caution as they are available at varying strengths. The recipe can be found here.

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