It shouldn’t take an environmentalist to state something so obvious, but I’ll say it — the comprehensive ban on Endosulfan by the Supreme Court should not be lifted.
We already know that the global community has enough evidence to phase out this toxic pesticide through the Stockholm Convention, which bans and phases out a class of chemicals called Persistent Organic Pollutants.
The convention has a tough protocol in place. The court used the precautionary principle for the temporary ban. Now, global precedence urges a complete and permanent ban. We need to keep our children and the environment, safe.
It is surprising how little we know about our neighbouring countries. For example Bangladesh, which I recently visited. From local to national, Bangladeshi civil society is fighting away for control and fair distribution of natural resources. In Dhaka, environmental groups and citizens last week protested against the water privatisation.
And just a week ago, Dhaka witnessed a Hartal against the exploration for oil and gas by an American firm.
Bangladesh is one of those countries where you can smell cigarette smoke at the airport and many hotel rooms allow guests to smoke. Usually, this would be treated as a health crisis, but the tobacco industry portrays the tracts as a green activity.
Environmental groups rubbished this claim through a brilliant pictorial testimony. While most shrubs are green, they have used “before” pictures to show how marginal populations were previously able to grow food and vegetables, resulting in their food security.
That is all replaced by monocultures now.