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Fertiliser minister Ananth Kumar added that if some pesticides have been banned in other countries like the US, they could be banned in India as well. Photo: PTI
Fertiliser minister Ananth Kumar added that if some pesticides have been banned in other countries like the US, they could be banned in India as well. Photo: PTI

Fertiliser minister to recommend ban on hazardous pesticides

Fertiliser minister Ananth Kumar encourages use of bio-pesticides, that are less toxic

New Delhi: Favouring the use of pesticides which are friendly to nature, Fertiliser minister Ananth Kumar on Monday said his ministry will recommend banning those pesticides which are found to be hazardous to biodiversity.

“There is need for holistic green revolution in the country and our motto should be less chemicals-more crops," Kumar said.

While addressing the annual Agrochem Conference here organised by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), the minister said, “The biggest challenge in front of us today is whether our pesticides and insecticides are complementary to our mother nature."

Expressing his concerns about biodiversity, the minister wondered “where bees and sparrows are these days". “So we will study and if it is found that there are some pesticides and insecticides which are a threat to our nature and biodiversity, we will recommend for banning them to the agriculture ministry," Kumar said.

The minister added that if some pesticides have been banned in other countries like the US, they could be banned in India as well. Calling for increasing the use of bio-pesticides, Kumar said these have several advantages over conventional pesticides. They are usually inherently less toxic than conventional pesticides, they generally affect only the target pest and closely related organisms, in contrast to broad spectrum, conventional pesticides that may affect organisms as different as birds, insects, and mammals, he added.

The registration of pesticides, their standards, residue levels, is governed by the “Insecticides Act, 1968", which requires major changes to address the various issues affecting this segment, he added.

“Green lifestyle is best lifestyle," the minister said. “The Pesticides Management Bill 2008 has been introduced in Parliament to replace the extant Insecticides Act, and the government will take all possible action to pass the same expeditiously so as to accelerate the growth and development of this sector," Kumar said.

In India, presently about 250 insecticides stand registered on regular basis for use in the country. There are more than 60 technical grade pesticides being manufactured indigenously by 125 producers and more than 500 pesticide formulators spread over the country.

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