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Excessive use of pesticides in tea gardens posing health hazards

By Correspondent

DERGAON, Sept 27 - Excessive use of pesticides in tea gardens located at Khoomtai, Missamara and Kakodonga in Golaghat district is posing great health hazards to the people of these areas.

The district has 74 big tea estates and several small tea gardens which have been playing a major role in the economic development of the people in the district.

Due to excessive use of pesticides by these gardens, the residents of Khoomtai, Missamara and Kakodonga are facing different health issues.

Talking to this correspondent, Makhanlal Barhoi, a noted social worker of Khoomtai, said rampant use of pesticides is posing a great threat to physical well being of the people living near these gardens. �Though the garden managements should regulate the use of pesticides and use the same in a scientific manner, the situation is completely different on the ground. As a result of excessive use of these pesticides and spraying of the same, the air quality in the nearby areas is getting polluted,� he added.

Similarly, the small tea growers, especially at Missamara and Kakodonga, also use high dose of pesticides, severely affecting the quality of soil, water and air in these areas.

Dr Monoj Jyoti Hazarika, senior associate professor of chemistry, DKD College, Dergaon, told The Assam Tribune that due to spraying of pesticides the solid particulate matters (SPMs) get mixed with the air and that is really dangerous for humans. �The SPMs can attack our central nervous system (CNS) along with other organs of our body,� Dr Hazarika said.

Dr Gunottam Bora, a noted physician of Dergaon, told this correspondent that uncontrolled and unscientific use of pesticides in tea gardens can cause several critical diseases in people who live nearby these gardens.

�Pesticides may be the cause of failure of respiratory system, stomach problem, eye disease and many other physical problems,� Dr Bora opined.

Reacting to the matter, Biren Ch Saikia, president of Aashray, a leading organisation working in the field of nature conservation, said government departments like agriculture, Pollution Control Board, Assam should look into the matter very seriously.

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