Narcotic Drugs Act of Bhutan, 2005

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NDPSSAA (English)




Kingdom of Bhutan.

Sl. No. Title Page

1. Preamble 1

2. Chapter One: Preliminary 2

3. Title, Commencement and Scope of the Act 2

4. Repeal 2

5. Chapter Two: Classification of Drugs, Precursors

and Controlled Substances 3

6. Preparations 3

7. Chapter Three: Control of Licit Activities 4

8. License 4

9. International Trade 4

10. Licit Possession and Use 5

11. Advertisement 5

12. Precursor 6

for Personal Use

26. Treatment, if Charged with Other Offences 13

27. Suspension from Penal Sanctions 13

28. Discharge of Penal Sanctions 14

29. Revocation of Suspension Orders 14

30. Offences in Relation to Treatment Orders 14

31. Compulsory Confinement 15

Controlled Substances

66. Unauthorised Advertising 31

67. Aggravating Circumstances 31

68. Chapter Thirteen: International Cooperation 32

69. Extradition and Mutual Legal Assistance 32

71. Amendments 33

72. Authoritative Text 33

73. Definitions 33

74. Smen-Tshig

75. Schedule I i

76. Schedule II ii

77. Schedule III iv

78. Schedule IV v

79. Schedule V vi

80. Glossary vii


The Royal Government and People of Bhutan,

Concerned with the health and well-being of the people of Bhutan,
which are important elements of the development principle of Gross
National Happiness.

Recognizing that the licit use of narcotic drugs and psychotropic
substances continues to be indispensable for medical, veterinary and
scientific purposes.

Considering that illicit use of narcotic drugs and psychotropic
substances can ultimately lead to addiction which constitutes a
serious threat to individuals and to the community as a whole.

Affirming that primary responsibility for drug abuse prevention
rests within families and local communities.

Recognizing that advocacy, awareness raising, education,
counselling and other proactive measures are necessary to help
parents and communities to carry out their responsibility.

Also recognizing that such measures are necessary to support
treatment, rehabilitation and social reintegration when prevention

Acknowledging that appropriate preventive, regulatory and control
mechanisms must be put in place in line with the international drug


control conventions to which Bhutan may be party to reduce the
illicit demand and supply for drugs.

Believing that effective measures against abuse and illicit trafficking
of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances require co-ordination
and cooperation of various enforcement agencies in the country,
including social and community support.

This Bill has been passed on the 30th Day 11th month of 2005 year of
the Bhutanese Calendar corresponding to 29th day of 9th month of
2005 during 84th Session by the National Assembly, Kingdom of



1. Title, Commencement and Scope of the Act.

a) This Act shall be called Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic
Substances and Substance Abuse Act 2005, the Kingdom of

b) This Act shall come into force from the 30th Day 11th month

of 2005 year of Bhutanese Calendar corresponding to 29th day
of 9th month of the Wood Female Bird Year.

c) This Act shall extend to the whole Kingdom of Bhutan.

2. From the day this Act comes into force, any provision of any

law, by-law, rule or regulation or announcement which is
inconsistent with this Act shall be repealed.




3. Each of the plants, drugs and substances to which this Act

applies is classified by the Schedule in which it appears under
its international non-proprietary name or lacking such a name,
under its scientific name.

4 Different measures of control are specified in this Act for

different plants, drugs and substances according to the
classification so adopted to ensure that drugs are available
exclusively for medical, veterinary and scientific purposes,
with the strictest measures being applied in relation to those
listed in Schedule I, less strict measures in relation to those
listed in Schedule II, and the least strict in relation to those
listed in Schedule III.

5. Each of the precursors to which this Act applies is classified

by the table of Schedule IV in which it appears.

6. Schedule V includes other substances which are liable for

abuse but do not fall under International control. The Board
may issue directives as to the measures of control applicable
to the substances.

7. Preparations shall be subject to the same measures of control

under this Act as the drugs of abuse or controlled chemicals


they contain, and where any preparation contains two or more
constituent drugs of abuse, it shall be subject to the measures
governing the most strictly controlled constituent.



8. The cultivation, production, manufacture, wholesale and retail

trading and distribution, import, export, and use of the plants,
substances and preparations listed in Schedules II and III shall
be prohibited to any person not expressly licensed for that
purpose and at any establishment or on any premises not
expressly licensed for that purpose.

International Trade
9. Only private enterprises holding the licenses laid down in

section 8 and specially designated public or Government
enterprises using establishments and premises licensed
pursuant to section 8 shall engage in import or export in the
plants, substances and preparations listed in Schedules II and

10. All exports and imports shall be subject to separate

authorization by the competent authority. The authorization
shall not be transferable.

11. The transit of any consignment of plants, substances or

preparations listed in Schedules II and III through Bhutan
shall be prohibited, whether or not the consignment is


removed from the conveyance in which it is carried, unless a
copy of the export authorization for consignment is produced
to the competent authorities.

12. Any free port or free trade zone shall be subject to the same

conditions and supervision as elsewhere in Bhutan.

Licit Possession and Use
13. The possession, for any purpose, of the plants, substances and

preparations listed in Schedules II and III shall be prohibited
except as authorized by this Act, made there under, or any
other laws in force.

14. Any person and any enterprise holding, for professional

purposes, any plants, substances and preparations listed in
Schedule II and Schedule III shall be required to keep them
under the conditions to be laid down by the competent
authority so as to prevent theft or any other diversion.

15. Any advertising of substances and preparations listed in

Schedules II and III shall be prohibited except, with the
written approval of the competent authority in scientific or
professional publications aimed at researchers or health

16. The distribution or dispensing to individuals of samples of

substances or preparations listed in Schedules II and III shall
be prohibited.


17. The manufacture, wholesale trading or distribution, and

import or export of substances listed in Schedule IV shall be
subject to the provisions of this chapter and the Rules and

18. Manufacturers, importers, exporters, wholesalers and retailers

shall maintain a register containing particulars of all
acquisitions or transfers of substances listed in Schedule IV.

19. Manufacturers, importers, exporters, wholesalers and retailers

shall be required to notify the competent authority of any
suspect order or operation, specifically as regards of quantity
of the substance purchased or ordered, the repetition of such
orders and purchases, or the modes of payment or transport

20. An export or import authorization shall be denied if there are

reasonable grounds to suspect that the consignment is
destined for the illicit manufacture of narcotic drugs or
psychotropic substances.

Medical and Scientific Research and Teaching
21. For purposes of medical or scientific research, teaching or

forensic work, the competent authority may, without
requesting the licences referred to in section 8, authorize an
individual to produce, manufacture, acquire, import, use or
hold plants, substances and preparations listed in Schedules I,


II and III in quantities not exceeding those strictly required
for the purpose in question.

22. The beneficiary of the authorization shall enter in a register,

which he shall keep for five years, the quantities of plants,
substances and preparations that he imports, acquires,
manufactures, uses and destroys. He shall also enter the dates
of the operations and the names of his suppliers. He shall
furnish the competent authority with an annual report on the
quantities used or destroyed and those held in stock.

Statistical Returns
23. Private and Government enterprises engaged in operations

involving the plants, substances and preparations covered by
this Act shall furnish to the competent authority statistical
returns as prescribed in respect of their activities.

24. The persons and enterprises referred in section 23 shall be

required, at the beginning of each year, to make an inventory
of the plants, substances and preparations listed in Schedules
II and III held by them and to compare the total quantities in
stock at the time of the previous inventory, calculated
together with those entered over the previous year and the
total quantities withdrawn during this year, with those held at
the time of the latest inventory.


25. The Bhutan Narcotic Control Agency shall submit reports as

and when required to the relevant agencies including
International Narcotic Control Board (INCB).

26. Any person, private or public enterprise, Government

enterprise, medical institution or scientific institution
engaging in any activity or operation involving plants,
substances or preparations covered by this Act shall be
controlled and monitored by the competent authority, who
shall, in particular, arrange for inspectors to make ordinary
inspections of the establishments, premises, stocks and
records at least once every two years and extraordinary
inspections at any time.

27. Such control, monitoring and inspections shall extend to the

compartments containing the first-aid kits of public transport
conveyances engaged in international travel.

28. When it becomes apparent before, during or after an

inspection that a criminal offence against this Act or the Penal
Code of Bhutan may have been committed, inspectors shall
report the matter to the Royal Bhutan Police.

29. Authorised officers may enter premises, make seizures and

take samples wherever the operations referred to in this
section are being carried out and such operations may be
carried out in accordance with the Civil and Criminal
Procedure Code of Bhutan.

30. Persons, enterprises or establishments involved must provide

the inspectors and the Royal Bhutan Police with all necessary
assistance in carrying out their duties, in particular by


facilitating the inspection of their professional premises and
of all documents relating to their professional activities.



31. Carriage of limited quantities, as specified in the Rules and

Regulations, by any international conveyance in the First-Aid
Kits and for emergencies shall not be considered as a
contravention under the provisions of this Act.

32. Exceptionally, and notwithstanding any provision of this Act,

the Board may authorise import of narcotic drugs and
psychotropic substances to meet a public emergency.

33. The possession by international travellers or patients of small

quantities of preparations containing narcotic drugs and
psychotropic substances for personnel use shall be permitted,
provided that it is established that the preparations have been
obtained under prescription from a registered and qualified
medical practitioner, and do not exceed the quantity
mentioned in the prescription.

34. Use of controlled substances in industry for purposes other

than medical or scientific is permitted provided that the

a) Ensures by appropriate methods of denaturing or by other

means that the drugs so used are not liable to be abused or
have ill effects and that the harmful substances cannot in
practice be recovered; and


b) Includes in the statistical information furnished by them the
amount of each drug so used.



35. The Royal Government shall ensure that individual citizen

particularly young people are:

a) Informed and educated on the dangers of substance abuse

through traditional institutions of family, educational
institutions, local and religious community, as well as through
effective awareness campaigns.

b) Provided with preventive support and protection through

those institutions.

c) Provided with life skills education so they can better

understand themselves and choose against drug abuse,
including through religious and moral education programmes.

d) Enabled to reduce the risk of drug abuse, through early

detection and counselling services.

e) Provided with alternative recreational activities and other

useful vocational opportunities to promote social integration.




Early Detection and Diagnosis
36. The Board shall ensure the establishment of institutions with

adequate and appropriate facilities for early detection of drug
users with special focus on high-risk individuals. These
institutions may include mobile camps and out-reach services
with appropriate testing facilities.

Treatment and Rehabilitation
37. The Board shall ensure the establishment of institutions with

adequate and appropriate facilities for treatment and
rehabilitation services for drug dependent persons and users
as approved treatment centres for the purposes of this Act.
The quality and range of services offered by such institutions
shall be reviewed from time to time by a committee
constituted by the Board for the purpose.

38. The Board shall ensure the provision for treatment,

rehabilitation and social reintegration of drug dependent
persons. Such provisions shall include psychosocial
interventions, counselling and detoxification.

39. The Board shall ensure staffing of such institutions with

adequate and appropriate personnel to deliver quality services
and care.


40. The Board shall establish a treatment assessment panel for the
purposes of this Act. The panel shall consist of at least 3
persons appointed by the Board, of which one shall have legal
qualifications and experience, and the others knowledge of
the medical, psychosocial and other problems connected with
drug abuse and addiction.

41. The Board shall constitute committees to maintain quality,

standards and range of services offered by such institutions
and these shall be reviewed from time to time for effective
delivery of services.

Voluntary Submission for Treatment
42. Notwithstanding section 161 of the Civil and Criminal

Procedure Code of Bhutan, any person who has committed an
offence only against section 500 of the Penal Code of Bhutan,
shall not be prosecuted for that offence or identified to the
public, provided the person voluntarily presents to an
approved treatment centre before being arrested or charged
for that offence, and then undertakes and successfully
completes the treatment without committing any further

Treatment, if Charged Only for Possession for Personal Use
43. Notwithstanding section 202 of the Civil and Criminal

Procedure Code of Bhutan, where a person has been charged
only with an offence against section 500 of the Penal Code of
Bhutan, the court before which the person has been charged
shall, as soon as practicable after arrest, order the person to
report to an approved treatment centre. If the person
undertakes and successfully completes the treatment without


committing any further offence, the Court may allow the
prosecution to be withdrawn.

Treatment, if Charged with Other Offences

44. Where the Court finds any offence other than an offence

against section 500 of the Penal Code of Bhutan proved
against any person, and the Court considers that the person
may have been under the influence of a narcotic drug or
psychotropic substance at the time of the offence, or
motivated to commit the offence by a desire either to use the
substance or obtain resources to enable its use, the Court may
order that the person submit for assessment by a treatment
assessment panel designated by the Court and comprising
such members as prescribed by Rules and Regulations.

45. Where the panel recommends that the person undergo

treatment at an approved treatment centre, the Court may
order that the person, during two years or such shorter period
as the Court may specify, submit himself or herself to the
treatment specified in the order, or for other treatment as
directed from time to time by the panel. The Court may
specify conditions relating to the supervision of the person,
including attendance at a treatment centre, and periodic
attendance before a panel for review and evaluation of
treatment and progress.

Suspension from Penal Sanctions
46. Where an order has been made under section 44 and the

person promises to undertake and complete the treatment, the
Court may at the same time also order that any or all the


penalties and sanctions imposed in respect of the offence be

Discharge of Penal Sanctions
47. Where a person completes treatment ordered under section 44

to the satisfaction of a panel, and commits no further offence
of any description within two years from the date of his or her
conviction, any penalties or sanctions made by the Court in
respect of the offence may be discharged by order if the Court
is satisfied that it is in the public interest to make such an
order. The Court shall not make such an order unless it is
also satisfied, following consideration of the report of a panel,
that the person is fit to return to everyday responsibilities and

Revocation of Suspension Orders
48. Where the person does not complete the course of treatment

as ordered to the satisfaction of the panel, the Court may, on
the recommendation of the panel, revoke the order of
suspension made under section 46.

49. In that event, time spent in treatment shall count as time

towards the discharge of any relevant penalty or sanction
orders made under this or any other law.

Offences in Relation to Treatment Orders
50. Any person who, without reasonable excuse, refuses or fails

to comply with a treatment order, to inform the person in


charge of a treatment centre attended by the person pursuant
to such an order of any change in the person’s address, to
appear before a panel as ordered, or to attend a treatment
centre for assessment or treatment as ordered, commits an

51. A drug dependent person who submits voluntarily and

released temporarily from centre, shall be provided with after-
care, follow-up treatment and supervision.

52. This Act shall, considering a drug dependent person as a

victim of unfortunate circumstances, be provided with the
option to avail treatment, rehabilitation and social reform or
criminal charges and confinement.

53. A drug dependent person who escapes and recommits an

offence for the second time shall be put to stricter charges and

Compulsory confinement
54. A drug dependent person refusing to comply under the

voluntary submission program shall be compulsorily confined
to criminal custody.

Compulsory Submission
55. A drug dependent person charged with an offence shall be

submitted compulsorily to treatment and rehabilitation.


Confidentiality of Records
56. The person dealing with drug dependent persons shall

maintain confidentiality of records under the voluntary
submission program, breaching of which shall constitute an
offence chargeable under appropriate law of the land. This
shall not prevent the communication of protected information
to and between members of the Review Committee appointed
under the section 57, or to and between persons directly
involved in the treatment and rehabilitation of protected
information in the course of treatment.

Appointment of Review Committee
57. The Board shall appoint a Review Committee to review the

drug dependence and users and for other functions as are
conferred upon it by this Act or the Regulations made there

Legal Custody:
58. A drug dependent person or drug user shall be deemed to be

in legal custody:

a) While he is confined in, or is being taken to or from, an

approved institution;

b) While he is for any other reason outside an approved

institution in the custody or under the control of an officer of
the approved institution; or

c) While he is being taken to any place to which he is required

or authorized under this Act to be taken, or is kept in custody


in pursuance of any such requirement or authorization.



59. The Royal Government shall constitute a “Narcotics Control

Board” to take all such measures for the purpose of
preventing and combating the abuse and illicit trafficking, and
to regulate the use of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances
and other controlled substances.

Appointment of the Board Members
60. The Board members shall be appointed by the Royal

Government from amongst relevant ministries, departments
and agencies and the Board shall be chaired by a relevant
Cabinet Minister.

Powers of the Board
61. The Board may exercise such powers as necessary for the

prevention of drugs abuse, the control of drugs, precursors
and other controlled substances, and the treatment,
rehabilitation and social reintegration of drug abusers. The
Board may also:

a) Designate agencies to administer and duly enforce the

provisions of this Act.

b) Authorise designated officials of any Agency, in coordination

with the relevant law enforcement agencies, to search, arrest
and detain any person, premises, conveyance and properties if


it has reason to believe that an offence has been committed
against any provisions of this Act, in accordance with Civil
and Criminal Procedure Code of Bhutan.

c) Provide strategic guidance and direction to Bhutan Narcotic

Control Agency (BNCA) and other designated agencies,
relating to the effective implementation of this Act.

d) Fulfil obligations under the International Conventions or

Treaties or Agreements to the fullest extent possible.

e) Order review of services for education and prevention, early

detection, treatment, rehabilitation, after-care and social re-
integration of drug dependent persons and drug users thereof.

f) Approve rules submitted by the relevant agencies.

g) Amend the Schedules by addition or deletion of a drug,

precursor or other substance, or in the case of a drug,
transferring it from one Schedule to another taking into
account classification decisions made by the United Nations
Commission on Narcotic Drugs.

h) The Board may, if it deems necessary to do so for the efficient

discharge of any of its functions, constitute committees for
consideration of any particular matter under the provisions of


this Act, and may for that purpose co-opt any person to assist
a committee.

Functions of the Board

62. The Board shall have the following functions and


a) Providing effective leadership and coordination in

implementing Bhutan’s national drug control strategy;

b) Reviewing, approving and keeping up to date Bhutan’s

national drug control strategy for the prevention, reduction
and eradication of drug abuse and its root causes, illicit drug
supply and drug-related crime;

c) Enabling, enlisting and fostering the widest measure of
community awareness, responsibility-taking and sharing,
support and action by parents, local communities, religious
communities, institutions, employers, societies, organizations
and self-help groups, in proactively initiating and carrying out
drug abuse prevention and reduction initiatives;

d) Propose amendments to this Act as and when necessary to the


Procedures of the Board
63. The Board shall regulate its own procedure as follows:

a) Except for Ex-officio members, all other members, shall serve
for a term of three years and be eligible to serve for a second


b) In case of vacancy, the Royal Government shall appoint
another person to fill the vacancy.

c) If any member of the Board is unable by reason of illness or

other sufficient cause to perform the duties of his office, the
Royal Government may appoint another person in his place.

d) The Board shall meet at least thrice a year. Additional

meeting may be convened as and when required.

e) The Chairman shall convene the meeting and in the absence

of the Chairman, the Vice Chairman shall convene the Board
meeting. At every meeting of the Board at which he is
present, the Chairman shall preside, and in his absence, a
member of the Board appointed by those present shall

f) The Member Secretary shall maintain records of the

proceedings. The minutes of all meetings of the Board shall
be dated and signed by the Chairman.

g) The Board may appoint such committees as it considers

necessary to advise it on such matters as the Board may refer
to them.

h) A committee appointed by the Board may consist of members

or non members, or both, provided that a member of the
Board shall be the Chairman.


i) The quorum for the board meetings shall be two third of its

j) Any decision taken by the Board shall be based on simple

majority but in case of equal votes, the Chairman shall have a
casting vote.

k) The remunerations and allowances for the Board members

shall be as per the prevailing rules of the Royal Government.

l) The Royal Government shall provide adequate funds to meet

the expenses of the Board to carry out its mandates. The
budget shall be administered by the agency.


Establishment of the Agency
64. The Royal Government hereby establishes the Bhutan

Narcotic Control agency.

Head of the Agency
65. The Royal Government shall appoint a person as the

Executive Director of the agency possessing extensive
qualifications and experience. The Executive Director shall
be responsible to the Board, and be the Member Secretary to
the Board.


Staff of the Agency
66 The agency may employ such staff as the Board may consider

necessary for the efficient performance of the Agency’s

67. The staff of the agency shall be appointed upon such terms

and conditions of service as the Board may determine. Staff
of the agency may also be seconded from other agencies.

Powers of the Agency

68. The agency may acquire information from any agency

designated by the Board relating to the implementation or
enforcement of the provisions of this Act.

Functions of the Agency

69. The agency shall have the following functions:
a) Serving as the Secretariat to the board, ensuring that any

decisions of the Board are implemented and carrying out such
other activities as the Board may assign;

b) Under the guidance and direction of Board, developing,

proposing, revising and implementing Bhutan’s national drug
control strategy for the prevention, reduction and eradication
of drug abuse and its root causes, illicit drug supply and drug-
related crime;


c) Strengthening operational skills and know-how of the
Government agencies, public and private sector organizations
and the community, together with analysis and research
geared to the prevention and eradication of drug abuse;

d) Improving international cooperation against drug and

precursor trafficking;

e) Strengthening cooperation between Bhutan’s health, welfare,

education, social reintegration, law enforcement, criminal
justice and penal agencies, in drug prevention and control,
and in reducing drug abuse and its root causes, illicit drug
supply and drug-related crime;

f) Duly administering and enforcing the provisions of this Act to

the extent designated by the board, facilitating the due
administration and enforcement of the provisions of this Act
by the authorized agencies, and referring for investigation and
appropriate action, any complaint or alleged or suspected
contravention of any provision of this Act;

g) Monitor the enforcement of the provisions under this Act.




Search, Seizure, Arrest and Detention

70. Any authorised official shall have the powers to search, seize,

arrest and detain in accordance with the provisions of the
Civil and Criminal Procedure Code of Bhutan in respect of
offences against this Act and relevant offences of the Penal
Code of Bhutan.

71. No woman shall be searched under this Act except by a

woman and if that is impossible, in the presence of a woman.

Sample-Taking of Seized Substances

72. Samples shall be taken by the authorized official of any

seized substance as prescribed under the Rules and
Regulations. The authorised official shall ensure that all
materials evidence relating to the seizure is collected and
processed, and that all items of evidentiary value are stored in
secure and appropriate conditions for the prevention of loss,
theft, or any other form of misappropriation.

73. The Court may order confiscation of any property derived

directly or indirectly through the commission a criminal
offence against this Act or a relevant offence in the Penal


Code of Bhutan and of any instrumentality used in the
commission of such offence.

74. The Court may order the forfeiture of any property which has

been seized if it is satisfied that the property directly or
indirectly represents any person’s proceeds or is intended by
any person for use in illicit trafficking.

75. In case of forfeiture of property seized under this Act, the

forfeiting officer shall forthwith give notice in writing of the
forfeiture to the owner. However, the notice shall not be
required to be given when forfeiture is made in presence of
the offender or the owner or his agent, or in case of
conveyances in presence of the owner, master, captain or
driver thereof.

76. Any person having an interest in any property ordered to be

forfeited under section 74 may apply to the Court within 49
days of the giving of notice under section 75 for an order
discharging or varying the forfeiture order to protect his
interest in the property. The court may make such an order if
it is satisfied that the applicant did not know and had no
reason to suspect that the property directly or indirectly


represented any person’s proceeds or was intended by any
person for use in illicit trafficking.

77. The drugs and precursors seized or confiscated or forfeited

under the provisions of this Act shall be disposed off in the
presence of the members of the Narcotic Control Board
and/or the officials of the authorised agencies.

78. Disposal may include using such drugs to meet the health care

needs of Bhutan, provided the drug is one listed in Schedules
II or III.

79. Anything, other than drugs which are forfeited under this Act

shall be disposed in such manner as is considered appropriate
by the Board on case-by-case basis as per the prevailing rules
of the Royal Government.

80. Unless conservation of the entire seizure of drugs and

precursors is essential for the purposes of trial and any appeal,
the court shall order disposal of the bulk as soon as possible
after seizure.




Controlled Delivery and Undercover Operations

81. Authorized agencies upon approval shall take necessary

measures to allow for the appropriate use of controlled
delivery and undercover operations within Bhutan, and at the
international level on the basis of the agreement or
arrangements mutually consented to, with a view to
identifying persons involved in the offences under this Act
and gathering appropriate information and evidence to take
action against them.

82. Controlled delivery and undercover operations shall be made

on case-by-case basis taking into consideration, where
relevant, the financial arrangement and understandings with
respect to the exercise of jurisdiction by the countries

83. Illicit consignment whose controlled delivery is agreed to

may, with the consent of the country concerned be intercepted
and allowed to continue with the narcotic drug, psychotropic
substance or precursor intact or removed or replaced in part.

Protection and Rewards
84. In cases of serious nature or when required for the security

and sovereignty of the country, no witness in any criminal
proceedings shall be obliged to disclose the name and address
of any informant or undercover agent.


85. Anyone who informs the authorized agency of the transaction
or use of narcotic drugs which leads to the proving of a
criminal offence and of the offender the informant shall be
rewarded as specified in the Rules and Regulations.

86. This section should not apply to any person whose duties

relate to the due administration or the enforcement of this Act.



87. The Board may order appropriate measures to control and

prevent the laundering of proceeds of crime including illicit

88. The Board may propose to the Royal Government such

measures as establishing a Drug Intelligence Unit and
establishing legal mechanisms to identify, trace, freeze, seize,
confiscate or forfeit the proceeds of crime whether located in
Bhutan or abroad.

89. The Board may direct Royal Monetary Authority or Central

Bank to furnish or share information on fictitious and
suspicious transactions of money to facilitate investigation of
suspected drug related money-laundering cases, to verify
customer identity, establish and maintain customer records,
establish and maintain internal reporting procedures, and train
staff to recognise and report to the competent authority on any
suspected money-laundering.




Non Compliance with Licence

90. Manufacture, production, sale, export, import, storage,

distribution, transportation, transhipment of narcotic drugs
and psychotropic substances for medical and scientific
purposes in contravention of the terms or conditions of a
license shall be liable to cancellation of the licence and
seizure of goods or a fine equivalent to a national daily wage
for a maximum of 5 years, or both.

Record Keeping Failure
91. Not keeping records of quantity, date, supplier and recipients

and manufactured and quantities held in stock shall be liable
to cancellation of the licence, and seizure of goods or a fine
equivalent to a national daily wage for a maximum of one

92. Not maintaining records of statistical returns of production or

manufacture of drugs, utilization of drugs for the manufacture
of other drugs, consumption of drugs, imports and exports of
drugs, seizures of drugs shall be liable to cancellation of the
licence and seizure of goods, or a fine equivalent to a national
daily wage for a maximum of two years.

Packaging and labelling failure
93. Not indicating warning and indications on the packages,

labels and the accompanying leaflet of any packages of the


controlled drugs shall be liable to seizure of the goods or a
fine equivalent to a national daily wage for a maximum of one

Illicit precursor trafficking
94. A defendant shall be guilty of the offence of illegal

transaction of controlled substances, if the defendant
unlawfully, imports, exports, sells, purchases or transports
any precursor.

Illicit activities involving equipment and materials
95. A defendant shall be guilty of an offence, if the defendant

manufactures transports or distributes any equipment or
material knowing that it is to be used in or for the unlawful
cultivation, production or manufacture of drugs.

Money Laundering
96. A defendant shall be guilty of the offence of money

laundering if the defendant knowingly uses any proceed of

Prohibition of the Cultivation of Plants in Schedule I
97. Cultivation of opium poppy and coca bush shall be an


98. Cultivation and domestication of cannabis shall be an offence.

Harvesting or collection of cannabis shall be prohibited,


except for production of fibre and animal feed.

99. The owner, operator, or occupier, under whatever title, of land

for agricultural or other use shall be required to destroy any
opium poppies, coca bushes or cannabis plants found growing

Solicitation to Unlawfully Use Drugs or Controlled Substances
100. Solicitation by coercion or duress to unlawfully use any drug

or controlled substance shall be an offence.

Unauthorised Advertising
101. Advertisement of controlled drugs to the public without

authorization shall be an offence.

Aggravating Circumstances
102. In determining the nature and extent of any penalty to be

ordered in relation to any person convicted of an offence
against this Act and the Penal Code of Bhutan, the Court shall
take into account whether:

a) The convicted offender belonged to an organized criminal

syndicate, participated in other illegal activities facilitated by
the offence; used violence or arms; committed the offence in
the exercise of a public office or public duty; added any
substance to the drugs which aggravated their danger to a
user; or made use or took advantage of a minor or mentally
handicapped person in committing the offence;


b) The offence was committed by a health professional or person
responsible for combating drug abuse or traffic; in a teaching
or educational institution, a hospital or care institution, a
social service facility or in other places to which school
children or students resort for educational, sports or social
activities, or in the immediate vicinity of such establishments
and premises; in a penal institution or a military

c) The drug was supplied or offered to a minor, a mentally

handicapped person or a person undergoing treatment, or
when the use by such a person was facilitated.

103. Any offences not covered under this Act shall be dealt as per
Penal Code of Bhutan



Extradition and Mutual Legal Assistance
104. The Board may propose to the Royal Government to

incorporate or simplify procedures for extradition and mutual
legal assistance.

105. The Board may propose to the Royal Government in serious

crime casework and to designate an agency to make, receive,
respond to or execute extradition and mutual legal assistance
requests in accordance with national laws, regional and
international conventions.




106. The Board shall review this Act from time to time to keep in

line with the changing needs and situation and when
necessary, propose amendments to the Parliament of Bhutan.

Authoritative Text
107. In case of conflict in the interpretation of any provision of the

Act, the Dzongkha version shall be final and binding.

108. Except where otherwise expressly indicated or where the

context otherwise requires, the following definitions shall
apply throughout the Act:

i) “Addict” means a person addicted to any narcotic drug or

psychotropic substance, and it is used synonymously with
drug user.

ii) "Agency” means the Bhutan Narcotics Control Agency

established under this Act.

iii) “Approved treatment centre” means a hospital, nursing home,

hostel, health facility or other institution that the Royal
Government may designate from time to time as an approved
treatment centre to provide treatment for persons who are
drug abusers or drug dependent.

iv) "Board" means the Narcotics Control Board established under

this Act.


v) "Cannabis" means the flowering or fruiting tops of the
cannabis plant (excluding the seeds and leaves when not
accompanied by the tops) from which the resin has not been
extracted; by whatever name they may be designated.

vi) "Cannabis plant" means any plant of the genus cannabis,

vii) "Coca bush" means the plant of any species of the genus


viii) “Competent authority” means Bhutan Narcotic Control

Agency or any other authority designated by the Board for the
purposes of implementing or enforcing provisions of this Act.

ix) "Cultivation" means the cultivation of the opium poppy, coca
bush or cannabis plant.

x) “Controlled substances” means substances listed under

Schedule V of this Act.

xi) “Conveyance'' means a conveyance of any description

whatsoever and includes any aircraft, vehicle or vessel, or any
means of transport including yaks, horses, mules, etc;

xii) "Drug" means any substance listed in Schedule I, II or III,

whether natural or synthetic.

xiii) “Illicit trafficking” means to illicitly cultivate, sell, give,

administer, purchase, transport, send, deliver, distribute,
possess or use otherwise than for personal consumption, or to
offer to do anything mentioned under this definition.


xiv) "Import" and "export" mean in their respective connotations
the physical transfer of drugs from one State to another State,
or from one territory to another territory of the same State.

xv) "Manufacture" means all processes, other than production, by

which drugs may be obtained and includes refining as well as
the transformation of drugs into other drugs.

xvi) "Narcotic drug” means a substance listed in any of the

Schedules annexed to the Single Convention on Narcotic
Drugs, 1961, as amended.

xvii) "Opium poppy" means the plant of the species Papaver

somniferum L.

xviii) “Precursor” means a substance listed in the annex to the

United Nations Convention on Illicit Traffic in Narcotic
Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, 1988.

xix) "Preparation" means a mixture, solid or liquid, containing a

drug or precursor.

xx) "Prescription" means a document bearing instruction for use

of medicines written by a qualified medical or veterinary
doctor or drungtsho.

xxi) "Production" means the separation of opium, coca leaves,

cannabis and cannabis resin from the plants from which
they are obtained.

xxii) “Psychotropic substance” means a substance listed in any of

the Schedules annexed to the 1971 Convention on
Psychotropic Substance.


xxiii) “Treatment” includes medical treatment, therapy, or
admission to an education or rehabilitation programme, social
reintegration which is aimed at preventing drug abusers from
further abusing drugs, and assisting drug-dependent persons
to overcome their dependence.

xxiv) “International Narcotic Control Board” means the board

established by United Nations to implement United Nations
Drug Control Programmes.

xxv) “Schedules” means schedules listed under UN Conventions of

1961 and 1971.


This schedule comprises:
Schedule IV of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961;
Schedule I of the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances

Schedule IV of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961
1. Acetorphine
2. Acetyl-alpha-methylfentanyl
3. Alpha-methylfentanyl
4. Alpha-methylthiofentanyl
5. Beta-hydroxyfentanyl
6. Beta-hydroxy-3-methylfentanyl
7. Cannabis, cannabis resin and extracts and tinctures of cannabis
8. Desomorphine
9. Etorphine
10. Heroin
11. 3-methylfentanyl
12. 3-methylthiofentanyl
13. MPPP
14. Para-fluorofentanyl
16. Thiofentanyl
17. Ketobemidone

Schedule I of the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances

1. Brolamfetamine 2. Cathinone
3. DET 4. DMA
5. DMHP 6. DMT
7. DOET 8. Eticyclidine
9. Etryptamine 10. N-hydroxy MDA
11. (+)-LYSERGIDE 12. MDE, N-ethyl MDA
13. MDMA 14. Mescaline


15. Methcathinone 16. 4-methylaminorex
17. MMDA 18. 4-MTA
19. Parahexyl 20. PMA
21. Psilocine, psilotsin 22. Psilocybine
23. Rolicyclidine 24. STP, DOM
25. Tenamfetamine 26. Tenocyclidine
27. Tetrahydrocannabinol, the following isomers and their

stereochemical variants: 7,8,9,10-tetrahydro-6,6,9-trimethyl-3-pentyl-6H-dibenzo[b,d]
pyran-1-o1(9R,10aR)- 8,9,10,10a-tetrahydro-6,6,9- trimethyl-3- pentyl-6H-dibenzo[b,d]
pyran-1-o1(6aR,9R, 10aR)-6a,9,10,10a-tetrahydro-6,6,9-trimethyl-3-pentyl-6H-dibenzo
[b,d] pyran-1-o1(6aR,10aR)-6a,7,10,10a-tetrahydro-6,6,9-trimethyl-3-pentyl-6H-
dibenzo[b,d] pyran-1-ol 6a,7,8,9-tetrahydro-6,6,9-trimethyl-3-pentyl-6H-dibenzo[b,d]

6H-dibenzo[b,d] pyran-1-o1

28. TMA


This schedule comprises:
Schedule I of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961
Schedule II of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961
Schedule II of the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances

Schedule I of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961 (except

the substances included in Schedule IV)
1. Acetylmethadol 2. Alfentanil
3. Allylprodine 4. Alphacetylmethadol
5. Alphameprodine 6. Alphamethadol
7. Alphaprodine 8. Anileridine
9. Benzethidine 10. Benzylmorphine
11. Betacetylmethadol 12. Betameprodine
13. Betamethadol 14. Betaprodine
15. Bezitramide 16. Clonitazene

17. Coca leaf 18. Cocaine
19. Codoxime 20. Concentrate of poppy straw (the material
arising when poppy straw has entered into a process for the concentration of its alkaloids
when such material is made available in trade)
21. Dextromoramide 22. Diampromide
23. Diethylthiambutene 24. Difenoxin
25. Dihydroetorphine 26. Dimenoxadol
27. Dimepheptanol 28. Dimethylthiambutene
29. Dioxaphetyl butyrate 30. Diphenoxylate
31. Dipipanone 32. Drotebanol
33. Ecgonine, its esters and derivatives which are convertible to ecgonine and
34. Ethylmethylthiambutene 35. Etonitazene
36. Etoxeridine 37. Fentanyl
38. Furethidine 39. Hydrocodone
40. Hydromorphinol 41. Hydromorphone
42. Hydroxypethidine 43. Isomethadone
44. Levomethorphan 45. Levomoramide
46. Levophenacylmorphan 47. Levorphanol
48. Metazocine 49. Methadone
50. Methadone intermediate 51. Methyldesorphine
52. Methyldihydromorphine 53. Metopon
54. Moramide intermediate 55. Morpheridine
56. Morphine 57. Morphine-N-oxide
58. Morphine methobromide and other pentavalent nitrogen morphine derivatives
59. Myrophine 60. Nicomorphine
61. Noracymethadol 62. Norlevorphanol
63. Normethadone 64. Normorphine
65. Norpipanone 66. Opium
67. Oxycodone 68. Oxymorphone
69. Pethidine 70. Pethidine intermediate A
71. Pethidine intermediate B 72. Pethidine intermediate C
73. Phenadoxone 74. Phenampromide
75. Phenazocine 76. Phenomorphan
77. Phenoperidine 78. Piminodine
79. Piritramide 80. Proheptazine
81. Properidine 82. Racemethorphan

83. Racemoramide 84. Racemorphan
85. Remifentanil 86. Sufentanil
87. Thebacon 88. Thebaine
89. Tilidine 90. Trimeperidine


This schedule comprises:
Schedule III of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961
Schedule III of the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances
Schedule IV of the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances

Schedule III of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961
1. Acetyldihydrocodeine 2. Codeine
3. Dihydrocodeine 4. Ethylmorphine
5. Nicocodine 6. Nicodicodine
7. Norcodeine 8. Pholcodine

Schedule III of the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances
1. Amobarbital 2. Buprenorphine
3. Butalbital 4. Cathine
5. Cyclobarbital 6. Flunitrazepam
7. Glutethimide 8. Pentazocine
9. Pentobarbital

Schedule IV of the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances
1. Allobarbital 2. Alprazolam
3. Amfepramone 4. Aminorex
5. Barbital 6. Benzfetamine
7. Bromazepam 8. Brotizolam
9. Butobarbital 10. Camazepam
11. Chlordiazepoxide 12. Clobazam
13. Clonazepam 14. Clorazepate
15. Clotiazepam 16. Cloxazolam

17. Delorazepam 18. Diazepam
19. Estazolam 20. Ethchlorvynol
21. Ethinamate 22. Etilamfetamine
23. Ethyl loflazepate 24. Fencamfamin
25. Fenproporex 26. Fludiazepam
27. Flurazepam 28. GHB
29. Halazepam 30. Haloxazolam
31. Ketazolam 32. Lefetamine
33. Loprazolam 34. Lorazepam
35. Lormetazepam 36. Mazindol
37. Medazepam 38. Mefenorex
39. Meprobamate 40. Mesocarb
41. Methylphenobarbital 42. Methyprylon
43. Midazolam 44. Nimetazepam
45. Nitrazepam 46. Nordazepam
47. Oxazepam 48. Oxazolam
49. Pemoline 50. Phendimetrazine
51. Phenobarbital 52. Phentermine
53. Pinazepam 54. Pipradrol
55. Prazepam 56. Pyrovalerone
57. Secbutabarbital 58. Temazepam
59. Tetrazepam 60. Triazolam
61. Vinylbital 62. Zolpidem

This schedule comprises: Table I of the 1988 Convention
Table II of the 1988 Convention

Table I of the 1988 Convention
1. Acetic anhydride 2. N-acetylanthranilic acid
3. Ephedrine 4. Ergometrine
5. Ergotamine 6. Isosafrole
7. Lysergic acid 8. 3,4-methylenedioxyphenyl-2-
9. Norephedrine propanone
10. Potassium permanganate 11. 1-phenyl-2-propanone
12. Piperonal 13. Pseudoephedrine
14. Safrole

Table II of the 1988 Convention
1. Acetone 2. Anthranilic acid
3. Hydrochloric acid 4. Ethyl ether
5. Methyl ethyl ketone 6. Phenylacetic acid
7. Piperidine 8. Sulphuric acid
9. Toluene


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2008 Drug Law