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LMIPPE February 2002

precautionary principle suspending the use of

and responded to endosulfan in all

the issue by crops in the

State.

They appointed a committee under Dr. Achyuthan

to study the pollution issue and to make recommendations to the Government regarding the steps

to be taken to tackle the issue.

Meanwhile, FIPPAT, a private lab near Chennai was commissioned by the PCK to study the problem. Their report was released in a press conferences by the

Pesticide Manufacturers and Formulators

India

(PMFAI).

This

has

clearly

sent

the

Association of signals to the

people and have made them unholy liaison between the

industry.

The

Enmakaje

all the more clear of the

PCK and

the

pesticide

Panchayath

has

already

disowned the FIPPAT shrouded the study informed of the study.

study for

all the secrecy,

and the

panchayath not

which being

Meanwhile, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) took a sue moto case against the Government of Kerala and have ordered the Indian Council of Medical

Research to study the issue and report to understood that their preliminary report has

them.

It is

already

been

submitted. This and has called for

report has found some causative detailed studies in the area.

links

During

the

same

time,

villages

like

Kokkada-Patrame,

which is in South Karnataka ( a State bordering Kerala) has reported similar health problems. The Karnataka Cashew Development Corporation (KCDC) has large cashew plantations in these areas and they have also been sprayed with endosulfan. Local doctors and panchayaths have also conducted health surveys in these areas and have reported that the condition is as serious as in Kasaragod. The Karnataka Government has also stopped aerial spraying and banned the use of endosulfan

in cashew plantations.

The Dr. Achyuthan

Committee

Report

which

was

submitted in November 2001, left more suspicions of the industry’s hand play in twisting the arms of the decision makers. While the committee did not do any field study nor health studies it categorically put the blame only on

the PCK and their plant failures as the reason for committee saved the skins

protection and management

the pollution. By of all the scientists

this, the who had

recommended the practices and almost chemical endosulfan (and the pesticide

exonerated the industry) from

being blamed. are reports of adjacent to the attribute these

The committee has concluded that “There health problems from three Panchayath plantations. There is no direct evidence to directly to endosulfan pollution, but there

is no evidence to completely deny it. Other usual like pollution from automobiles and industries are

causes absent

here. The

only activity

spraying of

endosulfan.

that The

is not normal is the aerial pesticide is applied without

observing the safety 2 decades. Hence

rules. The same chemical is used at this point of time, there is

for no

evidence causative

to implicate or factor of the

exonerate endosulfan as the health problems”, even while

acknowledging the absence of

that “proof of absence cannot be taken as proof”. The committee has recommended

Thanal

“There are reports of health problems from three Panchayath adjacent to the plantations. There is no direct evidence to attribute these directly to endosulfan pollution, but there is no evidence to completely deny it. Other usual causes like pollution from automobiles and industries are absent here. The only activity that is not normal is the aerial spraying of endosulfan. The pesticide is applied without observing the safety rules. The same chemical is used for 2 decades.

Hence at this point of time, there is no evidence to implicate or exonerate endosulfan as the causative factor of the health problems”

(Conclusion of the Government appointed committee)

11

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