Pesticide testing stopped only at border, continues elsewhere: Minister Khanal


Minister for Agriculture and Livestock Development Chakrapani Khanal has claimed testing for Indian fruits and vegetables have been stopped just at the border points and continue elsewhere.
He stated that the problem has been created by inclusion of the term test at border points in the government decision. “Tests are not conducted at the border points even in international practice,” he said.
Conceding that there is problem in capacity of the laboratories in Nepal, he assured that the government will soon upgrade those laboratories. Addressing an interaction program in Kathmandu on Thursday, he further claimed that the proportion of risky fruits and vegetables is still very low.
“We started tests of fruits and vegetables for pesticides in June 2014. We tested 187 samples then but there were traces in harmful proportion in only a few of them,” he pointed.
He conceded that all the laboratories are currently not in operation due to lack of human resources but added that test for pesticides of organophosphate and carbamate groups still continue.
He revealed that not just fruits and vegetables imported from India but even potatoes and other items imported from Bhutan and apples from China are also being tested.
He also assured that the government will comply with the order given by the Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday to not implement the government’s decision to stop tests.
The government had made testing of Indian fruits and vegetables for pesticides mandatory from the third week of June publishing a notice in the Nepal Gazette.
India had taken exception to testing of Indian fruits and vegetables for pesticides at the border. Writing a letter to top government officials, the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu had expressed concern at the checking.
The testing has been stopped for now citing lack of adequate preparations after that.
The government has been widely criticized for stepping back on the issue related to public health under Indian pressure, and a few advocates moved the SC against the government’s decision.
The SC issued an interim order on Wednesday instructing the government to not implement the decision to stop testing Indian fruits and vegetables for pesticides.

Minister for Agriculture and Livestock Development Chakrapani Khanal has claimed testing for Indian fruits and vegetables have been stopped just at the border points and continue elsewhere.
He stated that the problem has been created by inclusion of the term test at border points in the government decision. “Tests are not conducted at the border points even in international practice,” he said.
Conceding that there is problem in capacity of the laboratories in Nepal, he assured that the government will soon upgrade those laboratories. Addressing an interaction program in Kathmandu on Thursday, he further claimed that the proportion of risky fruits and vegetables is still very low.
“We started tests of fruits and vegetables for pesticides in June 2014. We tested 187 samples then but there were traces in harmful proportion in only a few of them,” he pointed.
He conceded that all the laboratories are currently not in operation due to lack of human resources but added that test for pesticides of organophosphate and carbamate groups still continue.
He revealed that not just fruits and vegetables imported from India but even potatoes and other items imported from Bhutan and apples from China are also being tested.
He also assured that the government will comply with the order given by the Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday to not implement the government’s decision to stop tests.
The government had made testing of Indian fruits and vegetables for pesticides mandatory from the third week of June publishing a notice in the Nepal Gazette.
India had taken exception to testing of Indian fruits and vegetables for pesticides at the border. Writing a letter to top government officials, the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu had expressed concern at the checking.
The testing has been stopped for now citing lack of adequate preparations after that.
The government has been widely criticized for stepping back on the issue related to public health under Indian pressure, and a few advocates moved the SC against the government’s decision.
The SC issued an interim order on Wednesday instructing the government to not implement the decision to stop testing Indian fruits and vegetables for pesticides.

Minister Khanal stated that the Agriculture Ministry does not have to speak about the letter sent by India to stop testing of Indian vegetables. “The letter was received by the Foreign Ministry. It was also copied to us. It is an issue of bilateral relation between the two countries, and the letter came as per the procedure of World Trade Organization. This is a simple letter. But the Foreign Ministry and not us should answer to that.”

Share:

Comments

© 2017 Setopati Sanchar Pvt. Ltd.