Be proactive in cracking down on sales of banned agro chemicals to save farmland, people from risks

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As the rice plantation season begins, authorities in regions and states are urged to be proactive in cracking down on sales and trading of banned agricultural inputs and related activities in all the regions in the wake of the coronavirus crisis.
As the demand for agricultural inputs would be high in the coming months, authorities and stakeholders are urged to strengthen efforts to prevent the sale of banned or counterfeit pesticides and fertilizers in the country.
Spurious and illegal pesticides often contain chemicals which are either banned or restricted due to the risk they pose to human health and the environment. As the contents of fake and illegal products are unknown, their use can pose a high-risk to farmers, the environment, and crops.
The sale of agricultural inputs, including pesticides and herbicides, has been allowed only through registered distributors as they are crucial to farmers.
The Pesticide Law does not allow the import and export of chemicals, their repackaging, or sale, whether retail or wholesale, in the country without permission from the Registration Board.
We have to continue inspections, strengthen law enforcement and especially pay attention to prevent the flow of banned pesticides and fertilizers as well as counterfeit and poor quality products through borders.
The banned agricultural pesticides and fertilizers linger longer in vegetables and rice and seriously affect the health of consumers.
In this regard, Pesticide Registration Board (PRB), constituted with 10 competent authorities from the ministries of Agriculture, Health and Sports, Forest, Trade, and Livestock Breeding and Veterinary Department, was formed in 1992, under the law. It has been issuing licences to distributors after scrutinizing the efficiency of chemical inputs to ensure that farmers get quality inputs, to conserve the environment, and prevent undue harm to humans.
While cracking down on the sale of illegal agricultural pesticides and fertilizers at the business locations nationwide, we need to take action against illegal trade, prevent bribery, and ensure correct market competition.
In order to effectively carry out agricultural material management work, especially the implementation of the law, Illegal trade needs to be absolutely eradicated and rule of law is extremely important.
To save the farmlands and to protect people from the risks posed by unregistered pesticides, punitive action must be taken against those who sell illegal pesticides and fertilizers.

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