After Years Of Terrorism - Pakistan's Northwest is Home To A Strange 'Scorpion' Addiction

After Years Of Terrorism – Pakistan’s Northwest is Home To A Strange ‘Scorpion’ Addiction

In a world that is constantly producing different genres of addictions by the day, among them hides the sinister most addiction of all…


something that the common man doesn’t have access to easily, neither would he want to get involved in the curriculum altogether – the addiction of smoking dead and poisonous scorpions!



Deep inside the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan in South Asia, locals of a small town called Matani in Peshawar, have been hooked to smoking dead scorpions since the mid 1960s. As astonishing as the thought sounds, there lies a proper procedure that follows to it.

Back in the 1960s, the scorpions used to be available in the markets of tribal areas. Ranging from Rs.10-100 ($1) depending on their quality. Today, that method, however, doesn’t exist. As for the procedure of smoking the scorpions – once the scorpions have been acquired – caught or killed – they are kept under sunlight to burn, till their bodies dry up completely. Once these scorpions are crisp, they are turned into powder form and stuffed inside an empty cigarette – ready to be lit.

There is also a second procedure that could be followed to attain the dangerous high. The dead scorpions are kept on a traditional and special kind of stove. While their bodies burn, the poisonous smoke released from the process is directly inhaled by the addict.



People who have tried smoking dead scorpions label it as the “worst form of addiction”. They also say that the tail of the scorpion, which holds the most poison, is what the addiction is all about. The strong intoxication lasts up to 10 hours, while the first six hours are said to be extremely dangerous and unbearably painful, the latter part of the high is surreal and an incredible experience.


However, every single thing in this world comes at a price. Constant addiction to smoking dead scorpions causes short and long term memory loss, along with painful eating disorders, insomnia and sleep paralysis. One of the key results of the high is bringing massive hallucinations – which, the addicts say, is one of the intoxication’s perks.

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