as per section 50 and 35 of the narcotics and prevention of drugs act keeping hookah or ganja for certain quantity is legal and if the quantity exceeds it will be an offence and non-bailable and punishable with 10 years atleast Criminality that depends upon ingredients used in the Hookah at home those are prohibited under law
. Even using at home also it should not be nuisance to the neighbours and family members. In most parts of North India hookah used at home within permitted law Hookahs which contain alcohol are prohibited under COTPA Act, 2003 but now even flavored, or herbal hookahs are also available which do not contain nicotine (cancer-causing substance) and as a relief to restaurant operators they can legally open herbal hookah bars/lounges.
They are not covered in the ambit of Cigarette and other Tobacco Products Act, 2003.
Amid this discussion came a ruling of the Delhi High Court,World Lung Foundation, South Asia v. New Delhi Municipal Council, in which the court ruled for National Restaurant Association India (NRAI) and held that herbal hookah flavors would not be considered as tobacco as prescribed in the COTPA Act, 2003.
The court also opined that the restaurant owner could legally provide the services of a nicotine-free hookah without any legal barrier.
Reference: Central Government Act
Section 50 in The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985
50. Conditions under which search of persons shall be conducted.
(1) When any officer duly authorised under section 42 is about to search any person under the provisions of section 41, section 42 or section 43, he shall, if such person so requires, take such person without unnecessary delay to the nearest Gazetted Officer of any of the departments mentioned in section 42 or to the nearest Magistrate.
(2) If such requisition is made, the officer may detain the person until he can bring him before the Gazetted Officer or the Magistrate referred to in sub-section (1).
(3) The Gazetted Officer or the Magistrate before whom any such person is brought shall, if he sees no reasonable ground for search, forthwith discharge the person but otherwise shall direct that search be made.
(4) No female shall be searched by anyone excepting a female. 1[(5) When an officer duly authorised under section 42 has reason to believe that it is not possible to take the person to be searched to the nearest Gazetted Officer or Magistrate without the possibility of the person to be searched parting with possession of any narcotic drug or psychotropic substance, or controlled substance or article or document, he may, instead of taking such person to the nearest Gazetted Officer or Magistrate, proceed to search the person as provided under section 100 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974).
(6) After a search is conducted under sub-section (5), the officer shall record the reasons for such belief which necessitated such search and within seventy-two hours send a copy thereof to his immediate official superior.]