Yavatmal pesticide poisonining: FIR filed against five companies, Fadnavis seeks CBI probe into farmers' deaths

Maharashtra has sent a request to the Central government seeking an investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the case of deaths allegedly due to pesticide poisoning in Yavatmal district. An FIR has also been registered against five companies in Nagpur, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said.

At least 18 people have died over the past three months in Yavatmal in eastern Maharashtra, allegedly owing to a toxic pesticide they were exposed to. The deaths had been covered in detail by Firstpost in a series of ground reports.

In a series of tweets, Fadnavis said on Thursday that after the deaths, a detailed study was conducted by the Central Institute of Cotton Research (CICR). The study is said to have mentioned that herbicide-tolerant genes were found in the Bt Cotton seeds of five branded companies, which contravenes the provisions of the Environment Protection Act, 1986.  However, the chief minister said that such seeds are being produced in other states as well.

Earlier, the state government had ordered a probe by a Special Investigative Team (SIT) in the matter. Fadnavis had then assured that a case would be registered against the pesticide manufacturers and dealers.

The state government has also announced an ex gratia amount of Rs 2 lakh for the families of the deceased.

In 2016, Vidarbha reported the highest number of farmer suicides in the state. The pesticide poisoning further aggravates the crisis in the region.

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Updated Date: Nov 03, 2017 06:48:42 IST