Suppose a person was found with 1kg of a narcotic drugs and another person with say 1000kgs does the punishment for the crime differ for both the people accused?
Is there a law in India that determines the punishment on the basis of quantity of narcotic drugs possessed by a person?
The Indian Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act 1985 provides a sliding scale for various quantities but as you do not specific which drug(s) are involved, let's use prepared opium as an example at s.17 of that Act:
- Punishment for contravention in relation to prepared opium. -
Whoever, in contravention of any provision of this Act or any rule or order made or condition of licence granted thereunder, manufactures, possesses, sells, purchases, transports, imports inter-State, exports inter-State or uses prepared opium shall be punishable,--
(a) where the contravention involves small quantity, with rigorous imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year, or with fine which may extend to ten thousand rupees, or with both; or
(b) where the contravention involves quantity lesser than commercial quantity but greater than small quantity, with rigorous imprisonment for a term which may extend to ten years, and with fine which may extend to one lakh rupees; or
(c) where the contravention involves commercial quantity, with rigorous imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than ten years but which may extend to twenty years, and shall also be liable to fine which shall not be less than one lakh rupees but which may extend to two lakh rupees:
Provided that the court may, for reasons to be recorded in the judgment, impose a fine exceeding two lakh rupees.
Whether the quantities are determined by the court to be small, lesser than commercial, or commercial will depend on the evidence such as previous convictions, trafficking paraphernalia, the defendant's drug usage etc, as well as the actual weight.