New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday asked an
expert panel appointed by it to explore the possibility of
exporting the existing stock of banned pesticide Endosulfan
here to other countries.
The apex court, which sought answers on various questions
related to Endosulfan, also wanted to know from the expert
body, how the quantity of the pesticide after exports can be
destroyed without harming the environment.
A bench headed by Chief Justice SH Kapadia asked the
the Joint Expert Committee, consisting of the Indian Council
Medical Research (ICMR) Director General and the Agricultural
Commissioner, to find out the existing stock of the firms
The expert committee would find out "what is the total
quantity of the manufactured Endosulfan in various companies,
firms, etc in the country and what is the quantity of the
manufactured stock of Endosulfan, out of the total quantity
manufactured in India which can be exported in terms of the
pending export orders".
Further, the bench, which also consists of justices KS
Radhakrishnan and Swatanter Kumar, wanted to know from the
joint expert committee to which countries could exports be
made and on what conditions.
"In this connection, the committee will examine the
relevant material, including international conventions, and
suggest to us the conditions on which exports of the existing
manufactured stock be made," the bench said.
It said the vital question was about the quantum of the
pesticide left after meeting the export order as it would
require destruction of those keeping in mind the international
convention and environmental concerns.
"Net of such exports, the court would like to know as to
what steps the government should take to dispose of the
balance quantity of the manufactured Endosulfan? At what stage
could the material/product be destroyed?" the bench said.
"While deciding these questions on disposal of the
manufactured quantity of Endosulfan, the committee would keep
in mind the environmental norms whether destruction of the
balance quantity would result in ecological degradation," the
bench said while asking the committee to give an interim
report on the above questions within three weeks.
The apex court had on May 13 imposed a complete ban on
production, sale and use of Endosulfan holding that human life
is more important than anything else and it did not want even
a single child to suffer.
The court`s order had come on a petition seeking a ban on
Endolsulfan on the ground that it was causing health hazards
including genetic disorders in Kerala where it is widely used.
The bench had said it was concerned about right to life
of the citizens guaranteed under Article 21 of the
Constitution and even the companies involved in the
manufacturing of the controversial pesticide cannot ignore
corporate and social responsibility by ignoring the hazards
posed to human lives.