NEW DELHI: The Union Agriculture Ministry has cracked the whip against the sale and use of spurious and illegal pesticides. The ministry, in a stern warning to the dealers and retailers, has said that the guilty will be liable for punishment, including imprisonment, under the Insecticides Act, 1968.
According to the ministry, even stocking spurious pesticides has been made illegal and dealers cannot exhibit the products without a valid committee’s registration. Selling pesticides without licence may attract imprisonment of three years with fine as per the Insecticides Act.
“It is mandatory by law to have a valid pesticides licence to sell, stock, exhibit for sales or to distribute pesticides. Due authorisation from the principals with the details of the pesticides sold is pre-requisite for obtaining a licence,” a letter from the ministry said.
The Agriculture Ministry has also launched surprise checks to examine the pesticides. Officials said it is important to check whether the stock meant for sale has been procured from legitimate sources with proper documents.
They also said that in certain cases, farmers are also asked to seek the original papers of procurement from the dealers before buying the pesticides. Officials said the exercise is part of the “grow safe food” campaign to improve agriculture.