Kochi: The Congress unit in Kerala has asked Union minister K V Thomas to rectify his statement that there was no evidence to prove aerial spraying of Endosulphan pesticide at a village in Kasargode had caused health hazards.
"The KPCC`s political affairs committee has asked the
minister to rectify his statement," party leader M M Hassan told reporters here today.
Following the minister`s statement, there had been
uproar from environmentalists and politicians, including from
The minister`s effigy was also burnt in Kasaragod.
Senior Congress leader V M Sudheeran, who attended the
committee meeting, wanted a nationwide ban on the pesticide.
Hassan said some others had felt that the statement was not
Thomas had only read out the speech of Agriculture
minister Sharad Pawar at the meeting and was voicing the
Centre`s opinion, he said.
Union Minister of State for Agriculture K V Thomas
while inaugurating an international agri-conference last month
at Kasaragod, had said a study by a government appointed
committee had not found conclusive proof of endosulfan`s
adverse effects on humans.
The Anti-endosulfan Committee in Kasargod had also
flayed the remark, justifying the Centre`s stand, with
Committee leader M A Rahman saying that it was shocking to see
a central minister representing the state making such a
According to anti-endosulfan activists, spraying of
the pesticide in cashew plantations had made life miserable
for people in neighbouring areas.
Over 200 people had died and several are living with
deformities since the last decade caused due to the pesticide
in Kasargod, they said.
Though Kerala has banned use of endosulfan, the
pesticide finds its way into the state through neighbouring