Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD: Agrochemicals Policy Group, representing pesticide industry, has claimed that the Fourth Metropolitan Magistrate, Warangal, has on February 4 issued non-bailable arrest warrants against three persons of a Non-Government Organisation (NGO), Toxic Links, for not appearing in a defamation case.

The case was filed by the industry charging the NGO with carrying a misleading campaign with its booklet, ‘The Killing Fields of Warangal’, tracing the death of farmers in Warangal to spraying of pesticides.

In a statement, S. Kumaraswamy, chairman of the policy group, said the “scary headline” given by the “so-called environmentalists” is solely intended to malign the Rs. 6,500 crore Indian pesticide industry. He said warrants were issued against Ravi Agarwal, founder and managing trustee of New Delhi based Toxic Links, and his colleagues, Madhumita Dutta and Rajesh Rangarajan.

These environmentalists are a threat to the nation’s food security and enhanced earnings for farmers, said Raju Shroff, chairman of the Mumbai-based United Phosphorous Limited.

S. Ganeshan, spokesman of Endosulfan Manufacturers and Formulators association, said the NGO’s action had a negative impact on the manufacture of agrochemicals.