Punjab Government’s Department of Agriculture has issued directions to discontinue the sale of 20 pesticides (insecticides) including Endosulfan harmful to health of humans and environment with immediate effect.
This decision was taken based on the recommendations of Registration Committee, Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) and Punjab State Farmers’ Commission (PSFC).
The insecticides that are banned includes Tricholorofon, Phosphamidon, Dicofol, Methomyl, Thiophanate Methyl, Benfuracarb, Bifenthrin, Endosulfan, Chlorfenapyr, Carbosulfan, Ethofenprox (Etofenprox), Phorate, Triazophos, Dazomet, Diflubenzuron, Fenitrothion, Metaldehyde, Kasugamycin, Alachior and Monocrotophos.
Some of these pesticides (Phosphamidion, Methomyl, Phorate, Triazophos and Monocrotophos) are considered class I pesticides by World Health Organization (WHO) and are further categorised into extremely hazardous (class Ia) and highly hazardous (class Ib) to human health. Many of these are already banned in several countries.
In India, use of several class I pesticides are still used which are banned by other countries. In 2015, based on the recommendations of Anupam Verma committee, Union Agriculture Ministry through an order of December 2016 had planned to ban only three out of these five class I pesticides and that too, starting from 2021.