Till now 44 pesticides have been banned for import, manufacture and sale, two pesticide formulations have been restricted to be manufactured for export only and eight pesticides have been withdrawn and are no longer in use in agriculture, said Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar on last Friday.
The minister also said that 18 pesticides have been refused registration, nine have been restricted for use and six shall be phased out by December 31, 2020. He was replying to BJP leader Vijaypal Singh Tomar”s queries over use of dangerous chemicals and pesticides in farming.
Vijaypal Singh had questioned the minister whether government or any agency has conducted any survey on the death of farmers due to ignorance about using dangerous chemicals and pesticides in farming causing ill effect on human health. He also expressed to know whether government has considered imposing restrictions or ban on such chemicals which can severely affect and harm the health of the farmers who use them, the farm products on which these are used and the health of the human beings who consume these farm products.
The minister said, “No survey has been conducted by Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare. Indian Council of Agricultural Research and state governments of Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Haryana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Punjab, Kerala, Gujarat, Meghalaya, Manipur, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana and Tamil Nadu have also reported that no such survey has been done.”
He said that Indian Council of Medical Research has reported that it has recently initiated a multi-centric study to assess exposure and the health effects of pesticides.
It was found that pesticides are toxic substances but they do not pose any adverse effect on human beings, animals and the environment if they are used as per the label and leaflet approved by the registration committee.
Pesticides are registered for use in the country by the Registration Committee only after satisfying about their efficacy and safety to human health, animal and environment. The misuse or abuse of pesticide may result in adverse effect on human health.
However, with regard to the safety and efficacy of registered pesticides, technical reviews are undertaken through Committee of Experts from time to time and continued use of such registered pesticides is permitted only if found safe.
He also said that state governments also impose restrictions and ban on pesticides from time to time under the provisions of Insecticides Act, 1968.