(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
May 01, 2011
AIKS, AIAWU Plan Stir for Ban on Endosulfan
THROUGH a joint statement issued from New Delhi on April 26, the All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) and the All India Agricultural Workers Union (AIAWU) have congratulated the state government of Kerala for banning the dangerous pesticide, Endosulfan, which has resulted in widespread growth of some 150 diseases, including cancer, among thousands of agricultural labourers, farmers and even the population at large, who eat vegetables and fruit sprayed with it or drink water infected by the chemical filtering down into the subsoil.
of Punjab, western
UP, Haryana, Rajasthan,
seventeen such commissions
have already been set up by both the state and central governments, but
has only been an obdurate response from the prime minister whose
siding blindly with pesticide corporates against the people who have no
recourse but to pay the price of their profiteering with their lives.
year, an international convention was held at
The AIKS and
they have vowed to fight against the mass poisoning of the Indian
the sake of more profits for the corporates. Kerala has led the states
studying its effects on farmers and agricultural labourers and banning
pesticide. But even today thousands are dying because of its widespread
The AIKS and the AIAWU have therefore raised the following demands.
1) Immediate ban by the centre on the use of Endosulfan as had been done in 2001 by the central government before the ban was removed arbitrarily in 2004.
2) A machinery to ensure compensation for the victims of diseases resulting from its use or indirect ingestion of this pesticide’s residues in vegetables and water.
3) The Pesticide Management Bill must provide for ban on all hazardous and extremely hazardous categories of pesticides in a totality, as has already been done in some 65 countries.
4) Introduction of a special medical insurance scheme by the centre, with no contribution from the victims, to pay for its negligence as most of the victims are poor farmers and agricultural labourers who are unable to afford treatment.
5) A legal mechanism must be set up to force the corporates to pay compensation for diseases caused by these pesticides through their direct use or indirect ingestion.
The two organisations have directed all their state units to take up campaigns to educate the rural masses on the dangers of using such pesticides. They must plan agitations for a complete ban on poisonous pesticides, with strict punishment for their clandestine use, and adequate compensation to those who are suffering from their ill effects.