Public urged to inform authorities about use of the pesticide

A team of officials led by Revenue Divisional Officer V.R. Vinod conducted raids at various places in Udumbanchola and Peerumade taluks on Friday and Saturday to enforce the ban on endosulfan.

There had been reports that the banned pesticide was being used in the cardamom and tea estates in the two taluks even after the State-wide ban on endosulfan.

Raids were conducted on the stores of estates and pesticide outlets. The team also directed the farmers and estate managements to strictly adhere to the ban.

Mr. Vinod urged the public to pass on any information regarding the use of endosulfan to the agriculture officers, village officers or the police. Village authorities and officials of Krishi Bhavans will conduct routine checks in the estates and farms to enforce the ban.

The banned pesticide, brought in bottles with fake labels from Tamil Nadu, are said to be used in the cardamom plantations. The spurt in the prices of cardamom are luring small-scale cardamom growers also to use the banned substance. Water bodies in the estate areas are polluted because of the rampant use of the pesticide for years.

Workers from Tamil Nadu are employed to spray the pesticides as there is a general reluctance on the part of workers from the State to spray the pesticide, it is learnt.

Committee formed

Staff Reporter writes from Kottayam:

A committee headed by the District Collector has been set up in the district to enforce the State-wide ban on the use of endosulfan. The empowered body has been formed to prevent the use, distribution and storage of the banned pesticide.

To enforce the ban, raids will be conducted in plantations, vehicles and distribution godowns.

The raids will be conducted under the supervision of the Principal Agricultural Officer, who is the convenor of the committee, and the Assistant Agricultural Director.

The team will confiscate the banned substance, if found, and action will be initiated against those storing or found to be using the substance under the provisions of the Central Pesticide Act, 1968. Samples of the confiscated pesticides will be sent to the Central Insecticide Laboratory (CIL) at Faridabad, Haryana, for testing.

At the first meeting of the committee held here on Friday, District Collector Mini Antony urged the public to inform the Principal Agriculture Officer if the possession of endosulfan came to their notice.

The other members of the committee include District Superintendent of Police; Sales Tax Commissioner; Assistant Excise Commissioner; Public Prosecutor; Revenue Divisional Officer; District Labour Officer; representatives of Kerala Agricultural University and the Pollution Control Board; Deputy and Assistant Agricultural Directors; and nominees of the Collector, according to an official release.

  • Farmers, estates asked to strictly adhere to the ban

  • Action against those storing or using the pesticide