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Published on 12 Feb 2012 | over 5 years ago

Charas is the name given to a hashish form of cannabis which is hand-made in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nepal and India. It is made from the resin of the cannabis plant (Cannabis sativa or Cannabis indica). The plant grows wild throughout Northern India, Pakistan and the Himalayas (its putative origin) and is an important cash crop for the local people
Gardaa is a type of hashish made primarily in Afghanistan, but also in Pakistani tribal areas, using dried cannabis of high potency. It is a very pure form of Charas; free from any additive chemicals. It is a very pliable substance which can take any shape. Usually sold in the shape of balls, Gardaa starts dissolving into smaller particles even with the heat of the palm. Gardaa is an Urdu word which means "dust". It is named Gardaa due to its similarity in colour to mud or brown thick dust. Charas is mostly consumed after it is heated. After it is heated, the "brown powder" changes into a smooth "greenish mass". The term gardaa is also some times used to describe the greenish powder-form of charas. Gardaa has two types mainly, one is soft, solid, smooth structure known as pakka garda and the other one is kacha gardaa, kacha gardaa is a soft powder which is green (or lightly green brown sometimes).
Although gardaa is available throughout Pakistan, it is made in the northern tribal areas of Pakistan and in Afghanistan. It is mainly available in Peshawar, and even though the smell may linger in bazaars, it is not sold openly—though with a help of a guide one can find it. In K.P.K ., It can mostly be found in those areas which lie on the border with Khyber Agency, Orakzai Agency and Kurram Agency. One such place is Shah Kass which is part of Khyber Agency and borders with the Hayatabad neighborhood of Peshawar city. One "tola" on average costs 600 Pakistani Rupees. Its price has increased due to the tension in the Tribal Areas
Hashish is a cannabis preparation composed of compressed stalked resin glands, called trichomes, collected from the unfertilized buds of the cannabis plant. It contains the same active ingredients but in higher concentrations than unsifted buds or leaves. Hashish is often a paste-like substance with varying hardness and pliability, its color most commonly light to dark brown but varying toward green, yellow, black or red
Hashish is heated in a pipe, hookah, bong, bubbler, vaporizer, hot knife, smoked in joints mixed with cannabis buds or tobacco (the latter being more common in Europe and Africa), or cooked in foods.
Fresh hashish considered to be good quality is soft and pliable and becomes progressively harder and less potent over weeks and months as its THC content oxidizes to other cannabinoids and as essential oils evaporate. Hashish color usually reflects the methods of harvesting, manufacturing, and storage. Hash is generally said to be black (Afghanistan),

Charas plays an important and often integral role in the culture and ritual of certain sects of the Hindu religion, especially among the Shaivs—- the sub-division of Hinduism holding Lord Shiva to be the supreme god (in contrast to Vaishnavs who believe Lord Vishnu as being topmost)-- and it is venerated by some as being one of the aspects of Lord Shiva
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