Analysis of adulterants in prepared bhang from different Authorized bhang shops, Shrawan Kumar Sadawarti et al., 2018

Analysis of adulterants in prepared bhang from different Authorized bhang shops

Shrawan Kumar Sadawarti, Lav Kesharwani, A. K. Jain, Vaibhav Saran, A. K. Gupta

Academic Journal of Forensic Sciences, Volume 01 | Issue 02 | October-2018

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Abstract :

Cannabis is a tall, erect, annual, dioecious herb, provided with an open sunny environment, light, well-drained composted soil and ample irrigation. Bhang is obtained from cut tops of uncultivated plants and is least potent. The potency depends upon the concentration of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). It is a narcotic drug and is analgesic in nature. Bhang is prepared by crushing the leaf of cannabis plant and its effects are described as sedative, stimulant and hallucinogenic. In present time, the adulterants like Dhatura, Tobacco or chemical substances such as sleeping pills are added to increase or decrease its quality or quantity for benefits. These adulterants are harmful for human body and sometimes it becomes toxic. Therefore, the present study was carried out with the objective of examining the adulterants present in the collected samples of Bhang through several chemical tests and chromatographic methods. The results were both positive and negative that indicated the presence and absence of the adulterants respectively. More than 50% samples were found to be adulterated with Dhatura and tobacco alkaloids.

Keywords : Cannabis, Bhang, Nicotine, Sedative, Hallucinogenic, Stimulant


Cannabis is a tall upright annual herb. It is generally dioecious i.e. producing separate male and female plants but fiber hemp varieties have been specifically bred to be monoecious (hermaphrodite). The leaves are palmate, and in the iconic image of a cannabis leaf there are seven lobes, the lowest pair showing as backwards facing spurs. However, this number and shape is not fixed. On seedlings the first pair of leaves is typically monophylous (single lobed), the second pair having three lobes and the next pair five. In many plants, especially of central Asian origin, the number does not extend beyond five while in others the number can extend to around thirteen. The genera Cannabis and Humulus (hops) belong to the same family (Cannabaceae, sometimes known as Cannabinaceae). Generally, cannabis is considered to be monospecific (Cannabis sativa L.) which is divided into several subspecies (C. sativa subsp. sativa, C. sativa subsp. indica, C. sativa subsp. ruderalis, C. sativa subsp. spontanea, C. sativa subsp. afiristanca). However, the chemical and morphological distinctions by which cannabis has been split into these subspecies are often not readily discernible, appear to be environmentally modifiable, and vary in a continuous fashion. For most purposes, it will suffice to apply the name Cannabis sativa to all cannabis plants encountered. Cannabis is an annual, dioeciously, flowering herb. Staminate (male) plants are usually taller but less robust than pistillate (female) plants. Stems are erect and can vary from 0.2-2.0 m. However, most of the plants reach heights of 1-3 m. The extent of branching, like the plant height, depends on environmental and hereditary factors as well as the method of cultivation. Cannabis is a tall, erect, annual herb, provided with an open sunny environment, light well-drained composted soil, and ample irrigation. Cannabis will deteriorate in about two years if exposed to light, air or heat. It should always be stored in cool places. Cannabis is a wind pollinated species. The males, which are generally taller than the females commence flowering first. The plant was grown in still conditions and leaves appear yellow under the deep covering of pollen. When mature, the sepals on the male flowers open to expose the anthers, which hang freely on fine filaments. The female plants tend to be shorter and have more branches than the male. Female plants are leafy to the top with many leaves surrounding the flowers, while male plants have fewer leaves near the top with few if any leaves along the extended flowering limbs. The sticky resin produced by the flowers and top leaves contains a number of psychoactive substances, collectively known as cannabinoids, these collectively make up the drug called cannabis. The gland of the female flower secret drop of resin, which are produce under hot condition male plants die after the pollination in the absence of male plant, female ones produced more flower covered with THC producing glands. A function of resin gland is the protection of the plants from animals. The greenish or brownish fruit is physically an achene. It is ellipsoid, smooth slightly compressed about 2.5-5cm long and the diameter is 2-3.5cm chemical constituent cannabis (Buchanan and O’Connell, 1998).

The potency of the cannabis obtained from a plant is dependent on the content of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the most important of the cannabinoids. THC content is dependent on the part of the plant used, the method of cultivation, and the preparation of the extract:
a) Bhang obtained from cut tops of uncultivated plants with low resin content is the least poten.
b) Ganja or marijuana from flowering tops and leaves from specially cultivated plants has higher resin content and is more potent. Both of these herbal preparations (also known as ‘grass’ or ‘weed’) are usually smoked in hand-rolled cigarettes (‘joints’ or ‘reefers’). Potency is variable, with a THC content of 1-10 per cent.
c) Cannabis resin (hashish) is the resin itself, in the form of a sticky brown cake, which can be smoked or eaten. Liquid cannabis or hashish oil is extracted from cannabis resin, and is more potent. Tobacco is dipped in this before smoking. It may contain up to 60 percent THC, and is a Class A drug. The Cannabis plant and its products consist of an enormous variety of chemicals. Some of the 483 compounds identified are unique to Cannabis, for example, the more than 60 cannabinoids, whereas the terpenes, with about 140 members forming the most abundant class, are widespread in the plant kingdom. Cannabis contains over 300 compounds. At least 66 of these are cannabinoids, five important cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant are:
1. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
2. Cannabidiol (CBD)
3. Cannabinol (CBN)
4. β-caryophyllene
5. Cannabigerol.

Bhang is prepared by crushing the leaf of cannabis plant. The effect of cannabis are confusing, it is described as sedative, stimulant and hallucinogen. In present time the adulterants like Dhatura, Tobacco or chemical substances such as sleeping pills are added to increase or decrease its quality or quantity for benefits. These adulterants are harmful for human body and some-times it becomes toxic.