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Fortnight after Bargarh farmer suicide, Odisha bans 11 pesticide companies

The government said of all the pesticide samples sent to laboratory for testing, those of 11 companies failed quality check.

india Updated: Nov 15, 2017 22:36 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Bhubaneswar
Farmer suicide,Pesticide,Odisha farmers
Farmer Brunda Sahoo’s nephew and friend in the field at Kalapani village in Bargarh district where he set his destroyed crop on fire, and committed suicide a day later by drinking poison. (Debabrata Mohanty/HT Photo)

The Odisha government on Wednesday banned 11 pesticide companies from selling their products in the state. The decision came exactly two weeks after a debt-ridden farmer, Brunda Sahoo, in Bargarh district committed suicide as spurious pesticides failed to protect his paddy crop from brown planthoppers.

Odisha agriculture secretary, Saurabh Garg, said of all the pesticide samples sent to laboratory for testing, those of 11 companies failed quality check. “We have issued a no-sale and show-cause notice to them. Action will be taken as per the Insecticides Act,” added Garg.

Union minister of state for agriculture, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, who visited areas in Bargarh, Boudh and Sonepur districts affected by brown planthoppers earlier this week, said the pesticides many farmers had used actually helped proliferate the brown planthoppers.

Meanwhile, another farmer committed suicide allegedly due to crop loss in a pest attack. Radhakant Suna of Simulia village in Bolangir district died on Wednesday, three days after he consumed poison.

Suna’s family members said he had cultivated paddy in over four acres and pests destroyed more than half of it.

Suna is the fifth Odisha farmer driven to suicide this year by a pest attack.

First Published: Nov 15, 2017 22:34 IST