Govt's callous attitude led to farmers' death: NHRC

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Monday castigated authorities for their “callous and negligent attitude” that led to the death of 18 farmers in Maharashtra’s Yavatmal due to infection caused by spraying a pesticide on cotton crops.

Seeking reports from the Centre and the Maharashtra government, it said due to lack of proper awareness about a complicated technology for spraying pesticides on cotton crops, the farmers’ Rights to Life and Livelihood have been “grossly violated”.

Quoting media reports, the NHRC said several farmers had to be hospitalised in Yavatmal district of Maharashtra due to an infection caused by spraying of a pesticide on the cotton crops. Many have died while others are serious, it said.

“The commission has observed that most of the farmers in the country are not adequately literate and are relying on the government agencies for the safe use of the agricultural products and the ancillary techniques. The victim farmers have fallen prey to the callous and negligent attitude of the government departments,” the NHRC said.

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