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NBR-USY/ASC/3D/5.00

NEED TO PROTECT RIGHTS OF FARMERS/ LANDOWNERS WHILE ACQUIRING THEIR LAND FOR S.E.Zs.

 

SHRIMATI N.P. DURGA (ANDHRA PRADESH): Sir, the aim behind setting up of SEZs in the country is to provide internationally competitive and hassle-free environment for exports/ imports and earn foreign exchange. But if you look at the SEZ Policy and steps that are being taken under this, they are contrary to the spirit of the NCMP. On the one hand, the State Government is acquiring and converting prime agricultural land into SEZs without proper cost-benefit analysis, on the other, rights of farmers/ landowners, from whom land has been acquired, are not protected. For example, for proposed SEZ at Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh, the Government is acquiring 1,000 acres of prime land, by giving little importance to farmers' rights on payment of compensation. Even if it is paid in some cases, it is miniscule. Farmers are sitting on dharnas and protesting. But nobody is listening to their grievances. They are also not being assured of any employment. Another example is, the Haryana Government says that proposed SEZ in Haryana by the RIL-HSIDC provide 5 lakh jobs. But if you look at the employment provided by 11 SEZs as on March, 2005, it is 1,000,650 people and even foreign exchange earning is far less than what it otherwise gets through customs duty. So, looking at all this, I would urge upon the Government of India to transparently deal with the issues relating to land acquisition, conversion of agricultural land into industrial enclave with proper cost-benefit analysis, payment of compensation to farmers and providing employment to people whose land has been acquired for SEZ. (Ends)

PENSION TO PENSIONLESS EX-SERVICEMEN

PROF. P.J. KURIEN (KERALA): Sir, there are a large number of ex-servicemen in our country who are not getting pensions on the ground that they have not completed 15 years of service. This is certainly an injustice to them.

When the Government servants who have completed less than 15 years of service are getting pensions and also -- hon. Members will please bear with me -- Members of Parliament and Members of the Legislative Assemblies are getting pensions even if their terms are less than five years, it is unjust that ex-servicemen are denied pensions.

It does not require a huge amount to help these helpless people who had served their country in their youthful days. They have made a number of representations and held agitations but all in vain.

I would request the Finance Minister to consider the case sympathetically and devise a pension scheme for those ex-servicemen who have not completed 15 years of service. (Ends)

NEGLECT OF MENTALLY-CHALLENGED PERSONS

AFTER REHABILITTION

ָ (ָ Ϥ) : ֳ֬ , ֤ ֮ ֮ ߴָ ׌ֵ פ֮ ֻ ™ߵ ֮־׬ָ ֵ ֵ֮ ֟ ָ ִ֮ և ֮ דֵֻ ֟ ֋ ֋ ֵ ߲ 48% , þã ָ ׸֮ ֤ ָ ïֻ֟

ִ֕ ָָ ָ ֵ֟ ֮ן ״ֻ ָָ ֵ ֵ֮ ן ߮֟ ָ ֟ ֮ þã ׬׮ִֵ ־ ־֮֬

֮ ֵ ׻֋ Occupational Therapy ֺ , ו ־֮֬ ïֻ֟ פ ָ ׬ָ ֮ : ָ ָָ ׮־ Occupational Therapy ׻֋ ïֻ֟ ־֮֬ ֋, ָ ֻև خ, ֲ֢ ֣ ֢ ֮֮ خ ָ פ ֋, ו ָߕ ָ ִ ß ָ ׮ֳԸ օ ־ ïֻ֟ Shelter Home , ָߕ ֮ ֛ ֟׮ֳԸ ֮

ӡ ׮־ ׌ֵ ׻֋ ־ ֮ ֮֋ ߑ ֋, ו ߾֮ ִָ , ָ ֟ߟ ֮־֤ (ִ֯) (3E/VPָ ָ)

-USY/VP/5.05/3E

STATEMENT RE: REPORTS IN THE PRESS

ON PESTICIDE RESIDUES IN SOFT DRINKS

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (SHRI DINESH TRIVEDI): Dr. Ramdoss to make a statement on the issue of pesticide contamination in soft drinks.

THE MINISTER OF HEALTH AND FAMILY WELFARE (DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS): Sir, the Centre for Science and Environment, New Delhi released a Press Report on 2nd August, 2006 on their website, in the print media as well as electronic media about the studies carried out by them on the presence of pesticide residues in carbonated beverages. The CSE in their report have stated that during 2006 they have analysed 57 samples of 11 soft drink brands, from 25 different manufacturing plants of Coca-Cola and Pepsi Co., spread over 12 States. These samples were lifted by the CSE from September 2005 to March 2006. The CSE study finds pesticide residues in all samples. The CSE has found pesticide residues of organo chlorine pesticides (HCH and its derivatives and Heptachlor) and organo phosphorous pesticides (Chlopyrifos and Malathion) in the soft drink samples tested and analysed by them.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has taken note of the studies carried out by the CSE as well as its discussion in the print and the electronic media on 2nd August, 2006. The CSE has made available a copy of the aforesaid study entitled "Soft Drinks -Hard Truth II", to the Ministry on 04082006. The report of the CSE is being examined.

I would like to inform the House that the standards for soft drinks or "carbonated water" were formulated under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Rules, 1955 in the year 1955 for the first time and have been subsequently amended from time to time. These standards for soft drinks have provided that the water to be used in making carbonated water should conform to the standards prescribed for packaged drinking water. These standards also provide microbiological requirements, maximum metal contaminants and declaration of added sugars, various food additives including caffeine, artificial sweeteners and food acids.

The CSE published another report in the year 2003 on pesticide residues in soft drinks. The matter relating to pesticide residue in soft drinks was examined by a Joint Parliamentary Committee headed by Shri Sharad Pawar. It was brought out by the JPC that soft drinks consisted of the following ingredients : -

1.                Water comprising 86 - 92 per cent of total volume

2.                Sugar comprising 5-10 per cent of total volume

3.                Concentrate

4.                Ingredients other than concentrate which include Carbon dioxide, acids such as citric acid, phosphoric acid and malic acid.

The JPC in its report at Para 2.179 has reported that due to the manufacturing process, pesticide residues are not substantially contributed from sugar. The observations of the JPC are as follows: -

"2.179 Carbonated water manufacturers have already mentioned before JPC that they have foolproof process to select and treat the sugar and this treatment is uniform worldwide to ensure good quality sugar syrup for the products. These companies are already purifying the sugar syrup with Hot Carbon Treatment Process, which is effective in reducing most of the pesticide residues to below detectable level or below 0.1 ppb levels. The Committee feels that sugar, therefore, cannot be the only source of pesticide residues."

Regarding the concentrate used by the manufacturer in these products, the manufacturers stated that the quality of concentrate used in these products are the same as used in other countries around the world and in addition to the concentrate, the food additives used in these products also meet all statutory requirements.

The JPC in its recommendation number 2.181 has recommended as follows :-

". . . . . The Committee, therefore, recommend that standards for carbonated beverages, which are best suited for the Indian conditions need to be fixed in the overall perspective of public health. These standards should also stringent enough. The reason that the other countries have not fixed such limits should not dissuade our law makers in attempting to do so, particularly when a vulnerable section of our population who are young and constitute a vast national asset are consuming the soft drinks. In the Committee's view, therefore, it is prudent to seek complete freedom from pesticide residues in sweetened aerated waters. 'Unsafe even if trace' should be the eventual goal."

(MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN IN THE CHAIR)

(Continued by Pk/3F)

-VP/PK/3F/5.10

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS (CONTD.): "The Committee are, therefore, of the considered opinion that the water used in manufacturing the soft drinks should be in conformity with the new norms which have already been notified under notification No. GSR 554 (E) dated 18.7.2003 so that the consumers are not deprived of the best standards."

Sir, in compliance with the recommendations of the JPC, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has taken the following steps:-

1.                The standards for soft drinks, that is, the carbonated water have been amended making it mandatory to use water conforming to standards prescribed for Packaged Drinking Water under the Prevention of Food Adulteration rules, 1955, in the manufacture of carbonated water. An amendment of the standards of carbonated water was issued vide notification GSR 451 (E) dated 15.7.2004 which came into force on 12.10.2004. It is reiterated that water constitutes 86-92 per cent of the soft drink (carbonated water).

2.                The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has set up a National Level Expert Committee to advise the Central Committee for Food Standards on the issue of pesticide residues. The composition of this Committee is :-

(i)              Dr. N.K. Ganguly, Director General, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Chairman

(ii)           Dr. S.K. Khanna, (Retd.), Industrial Toxicology Research Centre (ITRC), Lucknow

(iii)        Dr. N.P. Agnihotri, (Retd.), Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi.

(iv)         Dr. G. Thyagrajan, Ex-Director, Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, Hyderabad.

The terms of reference of this Committee are as follows:-

(i)              To guide the Pesticide Residue Sub-Committee in fixation of Maximum Residual Limits (MRLs) of pesticides in carbonated beverages, fruits and vegetable juices and other finished products.

(ii)           To guide the pesticide Residue Sub-Committee on technical aspects of fixing MRLs including methodology toxicity, processing factor, method of analysis, health risks that may be considered for risk analysis, risk management and risk communication as per Codex Working Principles;

(iii)        To guide on monitoring of pesticides in carbonated beverages and other food commodities;

(iv)         To guide on any other matter on which pesticide residues sub-committee, CCFS, Department of Health may require technical clarification/guidance.

3.                The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has also requested the Ministry of Agriculture to provide the requisite residue data in respect of all pesticides registered for use of sugarcane to enable the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to notify Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) in respect of these pesticides. In order to reduce the time taken to fix MRLs, my Ministry has streamlined the process of fixation of MRLs.

4.                The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare commissioned a pilot study of sugar samples in September, 2005, in order to establish the methodology of sampling and testing for the same. The report of this study has been received. The pilot study of 200 sugar samples collected from retail and wholesale outlets as well as sugar factories from all regions of the country was entrusted to Bidhan Chandra Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya, (BCKVV) Mohanpur, Kolkata which is part of the All India Coordinated Project on Pesticides. This pilot study broadly found absence of pesticide residues in the samples collected and tested. The data generated by the BCKVV is being reviewed by a peer group of 2-3 Pesticides residues Chemists from the Government institutions/universities, which have been designated by the National Level Expert Committee. The peer review process is expected to be completed shortly. Based on the findings, it was decided by the Expert Committee to undertake a comprehensive multi-centre study using LC-MS-MS which is the most sophisticated equipment available so as to detect even the slightest traces of pesticides and conducted to pre-empt the remotest possibility of even traces of pesticides coming through sugar. The study will be carried out by Bidhan Chandra Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya, the National Institute of Occupational Health and the National Institute of Nutrition. The National Institute of Occupational Health, Ahmedabad, and the National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad have since taken necessary steps to augment their facilities and have installed LC-MS-MS.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare views the issue of contamination of soft drinks (carbonated water) with utmost seriousness and is committed to protecting the health of the consumers and would take all necessary steps to ensure this.

(Ends)

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: First, Shri Suresh Pachouri will make a statement, then, I will ask you to seek clarifications.

STATEMENT RE: IMPLEMENTATION OF RECOMMENDATIONS CONTAINED IN TWENTY-FIRST REPORT OF DEPARTMENT-RELATED PARLIAMENTARY STANDING COMMITTEE ON INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY.

 

THE MINISTER OF STATE IN THE MINISTRY OF PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (SHRI SURESH PACHOURI): Sir, on behalf of Shri Priyaranjan Dasmunsi, I beg to lay a statement regarding status of implementation of recommendations contained in the Twenty-first Report of the Department-related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology. (Ends) (Followed by 3G)

PB/3G/5.15

STATEMENT RE. REPORTS IN THE PRESS

ON PESTICIDE RESIDUES IN SOFT DRINKS -- CONTD.

 

SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY (PONDICHERRY): Thank you, Mr. Deputy Chairman, for giving me this opportunity.

Sir, the hon. Minister has made a very elaborate statement. But, even then, it is a matter of concern for all of us that in the soft drinks which are being sold in the market, the Coca-cola and all other soft drinks, the contaminated water was found. Even the organic chemicals are found, which is beyond the permissible limit. The hon. Minister has also stated that this is on the basis of the carbonated water which need to have a specification, and, according to the standards fixed by the Government, it should be a packaged drinking water because the packaged drinking water is a safe drinking water, the water that has been a purified drinking water. But, unfortunately, we have found that in most of the States and in the outlets, the water used by the various agencies for supplying these soft drinks is not up to the required standard. But, unfortunately, the authorities concerned have not taken any action so far.

Sir, it is heartening to note that the same issue of the contamination and also the chemical residue that was found in the sample was raised in 2003. The issue was raised in this august House and also in Lok Sabha. The hon. Members had expressed their concern about it and the then hon. Minister also gave an assurance in this august House that the Government will monitor it. Sir, there was a demand in 2003 itself to ban those soft drinks which have got the contaminated material, i.e., chemical organic material. Now, Sir, the JPC also went into the matter. It gave its finding. On the basis of the findings given by the JPC in 2003, I would like to know from the hon. Minister what follow-up action the Ministry has taken. Sir, why I am saying all this is because the issue is very important. In 2003, the same issue was raised and the JPC went into the matter. It gave certain recommendations. It has come out with certain findings on the carbonated water, the water that is being used in the soft drinks. It found that there is organic material in soft drinks, and they have given certain recommendations. To my mind, these recommendations of the JPC are not followed in letter and spirit. Therefore, we have found that in 2006, the same issue is arising again. Sir, now, we find, various States, whether it is Delhi, whether it is Karnataka or whether it is Kerala -- almost all the States -- have started banning the soft drinks in their institutions like in hospitals, in schools, etc. They have started doing it. Now, Sir, on the basis of the report given by the CSE, I would like to know from the hon. Minister what is the amount of health hazard that is involved in it. Let the hon. Minister tell us whether it is going to be a silent killer. Sir, the soft drinks are also available in western countries. The people are drinking soft drinks in western countries as well. Do you have a comparative analysis as to what is standard that has been prescribed for supplying soft drinks by these companies in those countries vis-a-vis the standards prescribed for supplying soft drinks by these companies in our country? What is the standard that has been prescribed in our country? This is what I would like to know.

Secondly, Sir, sometimes, it is supplied in tin, sometimes it is supplied in bottles, and, sometimes, they put it in a container and add the mixture that is coming from the concerned company whether it is Pepsi or Coco Cola or any other company and supply it in the market. This is the way in which it is being supplied in the market. I would like to know whether any mechanism is being followed to check it. Who has been checking it? The concentrate is being received and then that concentrate is put into the water. Now, nobody knows as to which type of water they are using.

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Okay; you wind up now.

SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: Sir, this is a very serious matter. It is a matter of concern for the whole country.

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: I agree. But you have to seek only clarifications.

SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: Sir, I used to take Coca-Cola. Therefore, I am more concerned about it. I want to know whether I would die within a short period of time if I continue to consume it even thereafter. This is what I would like to know from the hon. Minister. ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI N. JOTHI: Don't consume it. ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: If you are all interested in my health and my survival, kindly tell the hon. Minister that the substances that are coming have to be standardised, regularised. The norms prescribed by the Government in this regard have to be followed. (Contd. by 3h/SKC)

3h/5.20/skc

SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY (CONTD.): Sir, what is happening is, if we go to the manufacturing units, be it Coco-Cola or Pepsi, in any State, we find that there is no checking mechanism, either of the State machinery or Central Government machinery. People consume whatever they produce and send to the market, assuming that it is of a good quality.

Then, Sir, this has been found in 2003 and now, in 2006. The hon. Minister conveniently says that a committee has been constituted. The Government, the hon. Minister, says that a committee has been constituted; then, what is the sanctity of the report of the Standing Committee? The Standing Committee held discussions with experts, with the people concerned, and after that, came out with the findings in 2003 itself. That needs to be followed in letter and spirit. But, far from that, as per the hon. Minister, another committee has been constituted. We are not going to solve the problem by constituting a committee. The hon. Minister has studied Medicine; he knows the health hazards; he knows about the human body. By constituting a committee, they would go once again go to various places; they would go to the Hyderabad Laboratory and the Ahmedabad Laboratory, and come out with a report. Then, it will go to the wastebasket. No decision will be taken.

Sir, the lobby of the soft drinks companies is very powerful. I would like to bring to the notice of this august House the kind of advertisements they bring out and the amount of money they spend on advertisements. I would like to request the hon. Minister to take a stern action. If he feels that the report given by analysts is wrong, he must tell us that it is wrong. If the analysts' report is correct, as brought out in the 2003 findings, kindly let us know. Now, the report has been submitted by the expert group; kindly arrive at a decision, but please, don't send it to a committee. The committee will take two more years and in the mean time, the health of the people would be affected. (Ends)

SHRI N. JOTHI (TAMIL NADU): Sir, an alarming situation has been expressed by the hon. Health Minister. The point that needs to be noted is that 57 samples of 11 brands have been taken from across 12 States, and all the samples have proved to be bad. This has been mentioned in the first paragraph.

Sir, this is a very serious matter. The study reports presence of pesticide residues in all the samples. So, there is no doubt about the fact that the samples have been proved to be injurious, at least, for the time being. Under the circumstances, what would be the follow-up action? It is not that the Government is lacking in power. Section 7 of the Food Adulteration Act is very clear about suspending the sales, banning the commodity and stopping it from reaching the market, for a while. Some judgements say that this period can be safely extended upto six months. So, the power is not lacking; the Central Government or the State Government can issue orders banning the food items for a while; Section 7 is very clear about that.

Sir, I would like to know from the hon. Minister whether he would exercise that option, or wait for the report of the committee to come, and then, diffuse the situation in. Some people would say a thing, some would say something else, and then, we all would forget about it. Which course are you going to adopt? Are you going to exercise the powers already available with you under Section 7? There is a prima facie case; it is clearly known; all the samples have been found to be bad, in all the 12 states. What is required further? It is not a benchmark! The 'benchmark' is full. All samples are bad. That means, there is a defect in the manufacture. Our health is more important.

Some States may not take up the issue seriously. Statements have come from some States saying that they would not ban. Kerala has gone way ahead by banning manufacture itself; they stand first now. Karnataka has banned their sale within educational institutions; it is not to be sold in the area. In the Parliament, we have banned it; now it is not available in Parliament. We have taken care of our own health; are we not supposed to take care of the health of the other citizens of this country? When Members of Parliament are protected, we must all the more protect the health of the public. So, we should ban it throughout India till we get the findings. I am not against any company, but I want the health of the public to be assured. So, till such time, as a safety measure, it must be banned. After all, they are not going to end up as paupers tomorrow morning; they are all very rich people and can withstand the circumstances. (Contd. by 3j/hk)

HK-SCH/3j/5.25

SHRI N. JOTHI (CONTD.): They can withstand. Who has asked them to manufacture it defectively? Not me. So, let them face it. After all, you seal the premises of small vendors; you prosecute them for small offences; you keep committee to go behind them and then you evaluate them. Then, after two years, three years or six months, this issue will be closed and some other issue will crop up. My appeal to the hon. Minister is to be more careful for the health of our country. Will you exercise Section 7 of the Food Adulteration Act for banning the item?

(Ends)

ָ֕ (ֻ֓ Ϥ): ֮֮ߵ ֳ֯ן , ֳ ֮֟ 1977 ß֮ ß פ פ ֵ , ָ֕ ױ ß֮ ֲ ֋

֮֮ߵ ӡ ֮ Ù ָ כ ֟֋ ִ 86%-92% , ָ 5%-10% ָ , ָ ֮ ֮, ԟ כ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ֮֮ ֮ , ߕ ? Ùև ? ָָ ָ ֮֟ ? ִ , ָ ֯ ֮֟ ׻֋ ָ ? ֮֮ߵ ӡ ӲӬ ָ֮ ?

ָ Ͽ ָ ֮ ִ ֮ Ùև ߋև, 2003 ׮ֻ ֋ Ù ߅ ֤ ֮ ־ פ ־ ָ ֕ ״ִ֮ ?

֮ ꌙ ו ָ ֮ , ӟԟ ߵ ָָ ־ ֕ ָָ , ־ ֤֣ ػ ә, ߕ ׸ ֈ ֻ ׻֋ ָ ִ ֻ֟ և և, ֲ ָ֬ ָ ֮ ӟԟ ֕ ֱֻ ֵԾ և ?

֮ ٻִֵ ֤ Ӈ ٻִֵ ֮ևԅ ־ ָ ״׮Ù ִ , ӡֵֻ ꌿ֮ և ֯֙ ֮ և ׸ ָָ ־ ӡֵֻ ֮ ֮ꅠ ֮֮ ָָ ӡֵֻ ָ ֛-֛ ֻֻ֮߮ ֮ߕ ־ ֮ ׬ ֕ ֲ 17% ֤ Ùև ִ ״ֻ ֻ ß֮ ֓ , ָ ֮֟ þã Ӿ ָ , ֮֮ߵ ӡ ָ , ֯ ֤֣ ָ ֮ ׾ָ֓ ? ָ ?

ָ ֟ ו ָ ֤֣ ֙ԇ̴ , ֮֮ߵ ִֵָ ֓ , ֟ ֛-֛ ꌙ ꌙ֕ ֮, ״ָ ֮, ׸ פ פ֟ ֟֋ ֟ ߮ ֮ 㮤 ־ָ ֮ ֟ ָ ֙ԇ̴ ָ ߾ ֻ, כ ֲָ פ֋ ӡ ϵ ־ ׻֋ ֮ ֋ꅠ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ֮֮ ׸ ֤ ꌿ֮ ꌿ֮ ָ֬ ָ ֤ ֟ ֋ ...(־֮֬)

ֳ֯ן: ֮֯ פ , ֯ כ ...(־֮֬) ֯ ׸ߙ

ָ֕: ֕ ֺ ׸ ָ ꌿ֮ , ۠ ֋ ֯֙ ֮֋ ֋ ׸ ֋ -ָ ׮ ֋, ֤ ָָ ֻ ֋ ױ ָ ִֻ ֟ ֋օ (ִ֯) MCM/3K ָ

KSK/MCM/5.30/3K

(ָ Ϥ) : ֮֮ߵ ֳ֯ן , ִֻ ӳ߸ ָ ִ ֟ ֲ 2006 ֻ ׻֋ ֋ ֲ Ӥ ָ ߕ ׮ ָ ָָ ֮֮ ֲ ׾֤ - ײ ָ Ùև և ֟ ׮ֵ , ָ ֮ ֤֯ ָ ֟ ָ ֤֯ ָ ֟ ָ ָ ׬ ֮ ׻֋ ֮ Ù ߓ ָ ֟ ִ֮ ֟ ֮֮ߵ ֳ֯ן , ֯ ִ֬ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ֮֮ ֮֮ ֤֯ ׸ ֤֣ ֋ ֟ ? ָ ֤֮ ָ ֤֣ ֮֋ ֟ ָ ֮֋ ֟ , ֮֮ߵ ֤õ ָ ֟ ? ϯ֮ ָ և ִ ׻֟ - Injurious to health ָ ß־ ָ ӕ׸ ߕ ׻֋ ־ֿ ָ ׻ ֋ - Injurious to health, ֮ ֮ ֻ ־֮ ֓ ֮־֤ (ִ֯)

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Shri Ravula Chandra Sekar Reddy. Please, raise new points.

SHRI RAVULA CHANDRA SEKAR REDDY (ANDHRA PRADESH): Sir, I will raise all the new points. I will not repeat. Sir, during the last week only, we had passed a Bill called the Food Safety and Standards Bill. At that time also, we made a request to the hon. Minister that it would be better if the Health Minister had piloted the Bill. That was our suggestion and at that time also, we raised this point. I would like to know from the hon. Minister while some States like Kerala have banned it in entire State; Karnataka and some other States have partly banned it - in educational institutions and hospitals. To my utter surprise, yesterday, from my own State, the Health Minister, having met the hon. Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare, stated that he was not having any power to ban such drinks. Officially, he went on record saying that the State had no power, and he also cited the example that when Ghutka was banned in Andhra Pradesh, the Supreme Court held that it was the Parliament which had to make laws, not State Governments. That was the example cited by him. Is it a fact? If it is a fact, the hon. Minister must guide the State Governments in this regard. These things should be uniform. One State cannot take a view, which is different from other States' view. I am at a loss to understand the situation and its legality also. How can there be different views, different interpretations?

SHRI N. JOTHI: A State Government has the power to ban temporarily. The Central Government can ban permanently.

SHRI RAVULA CHANDRA SEKAR REDDY: Please, advice my State's Health Minister.

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Mr. Jothi, you are assisting the Minister.

SHRI N. JOTHI: That is why, in the case of Ghutka, permanent banning is incorrect.

SHRI RAVULA CHANDRA SEKAR REDDY: Sir, this was the statement made by the Health Minister of the Government of Andhra Pradesh. I may kindly be enlightened about this by the Union Health Minister. The second point is that we already have JPC. If my remembrance goes in correct, the present Agriculture Minister was the Chairman of that JPC, and the recommendations of the Committee are there. You are going in for another Committee. I want to know whether any time-bound programme has been given to this Expert Committee. When I read the Statement, there is no time stipulation provided for submission of report and follow-up action. And, there is already a Standing Committee Report. So many reports are there - Standing Committee, JPC, and now, another Expert Committee has been constituted. So many Committees will only lead to confusion. Finally, we may end up with a new committee to go into the working of these committees. So, this is a very serious issue concerning crores of people and many people are engaged in the business who are playing with the health of students and small children. On these points, I would request the hon. Minister to enlighten us. (Ends)

SHRI C. PERUMAL (TAMIL NADU): My question is general. For good health and good wealth, is there any proposal to introduce 'Palm ta' and 'Palm Cola' instead of Coca Cola and Pepsi all over India? (Ends)

(followed by 3l)

GS-GSP/3L/5.35

0 ִ ӛָ (ײָ) : ֮֮ߵ ֳ֯ן , 껛 ؛ ִ֬ ֮ ־ֵ ׯֻ , ׻ ׯֻ ߮ ߋև ׸ և ևә ٻִֵ ߅ ׸ և, ָ ֵԾ ԅ ױ ָ ׸ և ֳ֯ן , ׾֮֯ 00 ִ֬ ׾֮֯ ֟ , ֲ ֤ ָ ָ ֓ ָ ֛ , ָ ֡ ָ ֛ 껛 ؛ , ִ֟ ֤ ߟ , ָ ֓ ׾µ , ׯֻ

ֳ֯ן , stern action ֺ ֕ ֵԾ ֟ , ָ ָ ֮֟ , և-ֈӛ և-ֈӛ ֤, ָ ֵԾ ֺ , ֤Կ ָ ֓ ׾֤ ׮ֵ ׯֵֻ ָ ׾µ , ־Ԥ ֮־֤ (ִ֯)

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Shrimati S.G. Indira. No political questions. Mr. Jothi has honoured his commitment. (Interruptions)

SHRIMATI S.G. INDIRA: Sir, we are now discussing a serious matter. Sir, till now, the State of Tamil Nadu has not banned it whereas the neighbouring State, Kerala has banned it immediately. The State of Karnataka has also banned it.

SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: Sir, this is politics. (Interruptions)

SHRIMATI S.G. INDIRA: No, no. I am not politicising the issue. (Interruptions)

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Not much politics..(Interruptions)

SHRIMATI S.G. INDIRA: Sir, the hon. Minister himself hails from Tamil Nadu. Why does he not take care of this aspect? This is my question. Thank you. (Ends)

֮ ֻ ӛ (ײָ) : ֮֮ߵ ֳ֯ן , Ͽ ֮֮ߵ ӡ օ ֟ ؛ , ָ ׮ֻ ߓ ә ֮֮ ָ և ӛ ־ֵָ ָ ן־ ֵ ָ ן־ ֵ ָָ ևԅ ׸ և, ָ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ֱԠ ӓ և և , ןֱ ֵ , ׮ ֵ , ָ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ן־ 0 ִֵָ ֟ ִ֣Ԯ , ׻֋ ֡ , ֤ ָ ִõ ִ֮֬ օ ֮֮ , ׮ ֵ ? ָ ָ ֲ ן־ ֵ, ָָ , ָָ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ֲ־ פ ָ ֵԾ ָ֮ 같 ײֻ , ֓ ֮֮ , ׻֋, ׮ֵ״֟ ׻֋ ֮ ֮ ϳ־ָ ָ ִ ? ָ , ָָ ׻֋, ׮ֵ״֟ ׻֋ ׬׮ִֵ, ײֻ ֤ ֮ ?

ָָ ׾֮֬ ֮ ׾׾ֵֻ֪, ֯, ֟ ׸ ϟ ֟ ָָ ןִ ־ֻ ֲ ןִ ׮ ָ ָָ ֟ ֲ ãև ָ ָ , ןֲ׬֟ ׾֮֯ ָ ֮ ? (ִ֯)

֮֕ן ֤ (ײָ) : ֳ֯ן , ֮ ָ -, Ӿ ֤ ߴָ ֛ , ߱ ֮֮ ֻ֟ , ٻִֵ , ֻ֟ , Ӥ פ ֵ ? ׸ãן ֲ ׸ ֟ ֲ ֯ Ӥ ָ֓ ?

ָ, ֮֮ ֮ ָ ֻ ֻ ֌ ֵ ֯ ִ Ù ? ֵ , ֮֮ߵ ӡ ֮֮ ?

(ִ֯) (3 ָ )


SK/3M/5.40

STATEMENT RE. REPORTS IN THE PRESS

ON PESTICIDE RESIDUES IN SOFT DRINKS -- CONTD.

SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, I would like to ask the hon. Minister when there is already a report available, why should there be any Committee for that?

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Let him say please. A number of hon. Members have raised this issue.

THE MINISTER OF HEALTH AND FAMILY WELFARE (DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS): Sir, I would firstly like to thank the hon. Members of Parliament who have raised certain issues from the suo motu Statement made by me. I have made this statement because I want to clarify to the hon. Members and to the country about issues pertaining to these recent episodes which stem from the study of the Centre for Science and Environment, their Report, 'Soft Drinks - Hard Truth II'. I have already stated in my Statement that certain samples were lifted from different parts of the country and 57 of them were found to have contents of pesticide residues. In fact, this suo motu Statement, I have been wanting to make for the last three or four days, but due to frequent adjournments, I could not have that opportunity. In my Statement, I have clarified what are the steps that the Government has taken, from the JPC Report of 2003 and what process we are going through. I will be clarifying on our hon. Members' queries.

Sir, firstly, as in my Statement, after the JPC's Report that standards should be fixed for these carbonated drinks, namely, Coke, Pepsi or other subsequent drinks, India was one of the first countries in the world, one of the first countries in the world to fix standards for carbonated drinks. That is way back in 1955 itself, they have fixed it. And some countries in the world still have not fixed any standards for these carbonated drinks. Subsequently, there have been a lot of amendments to the rules and regulations of these standards and it was subsequently amended a number of times through the prevalent situation at that point of time. Then, this issue, about the contamination of carbonated drinks, namely, Pepsi or Coke or other drinks, was raised by the JPC, and like I have said in my statement, the JPC have gone into the report and said that literally 86 to 92 per cent of the content of carbonated drinks is water and literally 5 to 10 per cent is sugar and rest are the concentrates. Let me take these three issues. For the water content of these colas or these carbonated drinks, we have standards fixed. Way back in 2004 itself, we have notified the standards saying that the water used in these carbonated drinks should be of the standards of packaged drinking water where it clearly stipulates that there should not be pesticide residues for individual not more than .001 ppm per litre and for a combination of that entire drink, it should not be more than .0005 ppms, which ultimately is literally negligible. Today, the onus on the manufacturer is that water should be very pure. The water which should be used in manufacturing of these carbonated drinks should be pure, without any pesticides, in fact, let us say, .0005 ppms per litre, which to test it itself is very difficult. Sir, coming to the second part, that is the sugar concentrate, which comprises 5 to 10 per cent of these drinks, the JPCs at that point of time itself said that sugar should go through the distillation process .... (Contd. by ysr-3n)

-SK/YSR/5.45/3N

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS (CONTD.): ..and it would be rare that there would be any pesticide residue in sugar content. They have said, fix up standards for sugar. We have set up a Committee at that point of time under Dr. Ganguli, the Director-General, ICMR, and there were three or four more associates from different institutions for assisting him in that process. Sir, worldwide, like the JPC itself has said, there are no fixed standards for these carbonated drinks or colas. There are no fixed global standards. Each country fixes these according to its local requirement, and that is what the JPC asked us, the Government, to do. This Committee had gone on tour to get the standardisation and the formulation of how to go about fixing standards for sugar, because this was a new entity. The Committee had to go around the world, not around the world, but, at least, go around linking to the world communities, especially the European or the American or the developed countries, and try to fix a mandate for fixing standards of sugar content.

Finally, in due course of time, they had, in fact, tested, as a preliminary test, about 200 samples all over the country. They went to coca-cola retailers, to the factories, and, in fact, to the manufacturing areas. Since the crushing season goes from November to February, there were lots of other processes involved in that. Prima facie they found that there were no pesticides in sugar content. We have to be more sure because you know about today's legislation. We have to be very strong from the legal point of view. That is why I would like to inform the hon. Members that the Committee is not a way of deviating from the issues. Personally, I am very involved in this issue; passionately I am very involved in this issue. And as far as the Government is concerned, I am very concerned about the safety of consumers. So, it has to stand the legal framework. I don't want to get some stay somewhere. And then we have to go through all the process again. Like the case of Gutkha which happened. I don't want to go into that. So, that is why, we are going through more sensitive tests which will be done in a matter of one or maybe 2-3 months maximum. We will be a getting a standard for sugar.

On concentrate, some of my friends here said: "What is there in the concentrate?" Sir, this concentrate is the formulation of the manufacturers. It is their formula. The onus is on the manufacturer that there should not be any pesticide residue in the formulations. They say that these concentrates and the same formula are being used in different parts of the world. Ultimately, today, the onus is on the manufacturers. Manufacturers can't say that standards are not there. It is just purely a question of sugar. It has already been said that it goes through a process and the amount of pesticides is negligible. It has already been proven by our testing in the Kolkata lab prima facie. So, the onus is on the manufacturers. They have to provide uncontaminated carbonated beverages to the consumers of this country. If any of these manufacturers don't do that, I am sure, under the law, they could be penalised under different sections of the PFA Act.

There are two different issues involved in this matter of carbonated drinks. It is not only about carbonated drinks. Carbonated drinks are just one part of it. The main part of this issue is the health problems, health issues related to consuming these carbonated drinks. It has not only to do with these carbonated drinks, it has to do with junk food also. The hon. Members should enlighten the public about this. The Government is playing its active role in enlightening the people of this country. Take the context of junk food, which is inclusive of carbonated drinks. Today, we see young children and people in the age group of 23-24 years getting heart attacks. I don't want to digress from the issue, but then it is my responsibility that I have to bring in a wider issue. Then I am going to answer the queries of the hon. Members.

(Contd. by VKK/3O)


-YSR/VKK-ASC/3O/5.50

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS (CONTD.): But taking the holistic view, there are two issues today -- one is the contamination by pesticides and secondly, the health issue relating to the carbonated drinks and junk food. The junk food comprises all these carbonated drinks, pizzas, burgers, chips etc. All these things are detrimental to our society and we hear 23-24 year old children getting heart attacks and are dying. We don't want a situation of that kind to arise in future. That is why the Ministry and the Government are very keenly taking interest in asking these children -- these youngsters, younger generation -- to avoid taking this holistic junk food which comprises these carbonated drinks. That is why, Sir, we have already sent advisories through the Ministry of HRD and through the respective State Governments. I am also writing to the Health Ministers as well as the Chief Ministers of the States to send out more advisories to the educational institutions -- both public and private -- and to the public institutions and wherever possible, to the State Governments that these are detrimental to the health of the society, not only to the younger people, but to the general population at large. This is the awareness which is being created on the health aspect.

Pesticide aspect is a regulatory phenomenon. We have a regulatory mechanism. We have an Act -- the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act; and the onus is definitely on both the Governments -- the State Governments and the Central Government. Today, lifting of samples and testing completely lies with the State Government. I am not shying away from my responsibility. Definitely, the Government is responsible; the Central Government is responsible ultimately. But, then, we have a mechanism of functioning. We have been faithfully writing every year, in fact, in due course of time, throughout the year that the State Government have to lift samples. Sir, we are not looking only at coke here. We are looking at water samples; we are looking at milk samples; we are looking at samples of fruits and vegetables getting adulterants and contaminants, which could be pesticides or other adulterants could also be there. We are asking the State Governments to lift these samples from different parts of the country periodically, test them and keep abreast of the knowledge of the Central Government. Some States do and some States don't do. But, then again, we keep writing to them because they have the mechanism, the infrastructure of testing, they have their food inspectors and they have their labs. We share their labs and their men to go through the testing.

Sir, somebody raised an issue relating to the steps that we have taken for both these issues, like I said, the contaminated issue as well as the health issue. After the recent episode, we have not waited for the State Governments to do something. In fact, we have been asking the State Governments to do it. We have asked them to reply. We also went around, testing, lifting samples of not only these carbonated drinks, but also water, milk, fruits, vegetables and all the other issues. Of course, the Indian Council of Medical Research has been asked to do a study on the ill effects of junk food, whole of junk food. I think, the study will take a little time, maybe, two to three years. But, nevertheless, the WHO has been advising the Government that the health problems of the future are going to be the chronic diseases, cardio-vascular diseases, diabetes, strokes, mental health disorders and cancer which we are going to take on and there is a correlation between junk food and these things, life-style diseases...(Interruptions)... I am coming to your point. (Interruptions)

SHRI N. JOTHI: You speak on the point. He is giving a lecture. (Interruptions)

ֳ֯ן : ֯ ך, ֯ ך ....(־֮֬)...

ָ֕ : ָ, ؛ Ùև ......(־֮֬)...

SHRI N. JOTHI: Please confine yourself to...(Interruptions)... He can go to some seminar and say all these things.

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS: * if you don't want to hear me. (Interruptions)

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Please, please...(Interruptions)...No, no...(Interruptions)... Mr. Jothi, one minute. The hon. Health Minister is, no doubt, addressing the issue of cola and also explaining the menace of the junk food. (Contd. by MKS/3P)

-VKK/MKS/NB/5.55/3P

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN (CONTD.): That is all right. But, now, probably, you can come to the specific issues which are being raised here.

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS: Sir, to get into those issues, I have to enlighten the hon. Members that these are the issues which they are going to face in future, and if he does not want to hear, *

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: No, no; he has already sat down. Why are you saying so? ...(Interruptions)...

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS: If he does not want to hear the problems which the country is going to face in future, I am sorry for that. ...(Interruptions)...

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Please listen to me. ...(Interruptions)...

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* Expunged as ordered by the Chair.


DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS: I am sorry for that. ...(Interruptions)... If you do not have the energy to listen to the problem that the country is going to face in future, I pity you. ...(Interruptions)... I pity him. ...(Interruptions)...

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: He is taking the House into confidence. ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI N. JOTHI: Very good, Sir. ...(Interruptions)... Finally, you are going to tell us that you are not going to ban them; I know that. ...(Interruptions)...

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS: I am coming to that. ...(Interruptions)... I am coming to that. ...(Interruptions)...

SHRIMATI S.G. INDIRA: The State Government should control.....(Interruptions)...

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: He will come to that. Why are you interrupting him? ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, I know this very well that he is not going to ban.

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: No, no; please don't come to that conclusion. That is not proper. The debate is going on well. ...(Interruptions)... Please have some patience to hear him. ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: Please don't bring Tamil Nadu politics here. ...(Interruptions)...

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS: Sir, I have already said that I have noted the queries of all the Members. I am coming to these queries one by one. I will be answering all these queries. But I do need to tell the House, and to the country also, what sort of problems we are going to face in future; it is my responsibility. This is not the only issue, but there are also a lot of other issues involved in that, and it is my duty to bring them to your notice. If Mr. Jothi does not have the patience to sit here, then I pity him. * if he does not have the patience....(Interruptions)...

SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, he says * ...(Interruptions)... How can he say that? ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI C. PERUMAL: Sir, who is he to say that? ...(Interruptions)...

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Why does he say so? ...(Interruptions)... He cannot say that. ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, he has said that. He cannot say that. ...(Interruptions)... Who is he to say all this? ...(Interruptions)... How can he say that? I am sorry, Sir. ...(Interruptions)...

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS: Sir, he should have the patience to listen to the reply. ...(Interruptions)... If you do not have the patience, I say......(Interruptions)...

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: No, no, no. ...(Interruptions)... Mr. Jothi, this is a very important national issue. ...(Interruptions)... One minute. ...(Interruptions)... One minute. ...(Interruptions)... Mr. Jothi, please sit down.

SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, he said 'he should have the patience; otherwise, * ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: Sir, he is interrupting him again and again. ...(Interruptions)...

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Mr. Narayanasamy, please sit down. ...(Interruptions)... Please sit down, Mr. Jothi. ...(Interruptions)... Mr. Perumal, please sit down.

SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, how can he say that?

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* Expunged as ordered by the Chair.

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Mr. Jothi, nobody can say that. ...(Interruptions)... Nobody can say that. ...(Interruptions)... That is said in a lighter vein; you take it like this.

SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, please see the records.

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: I will see the records. ...(Interruptions)... Nobody has the right to say; even the Chair will not say. ...(Interruptions)... I will look into it. If he said that * you take it in a lighter vein, and I will remove that. ...(Interruptions)... Mr. Narayanasamy, Mr. Perumal, please sit down. ...(Interruptions)... One minute. ...(Interruptions)... One minute. ...(Interruptions)... You see, the whole nation is concerned about this. People are watching what decision the country.....(Interruptions)... When the Chair is speaking, you must have the courtesy to listen to him. ...(Interruptions)... The whole nation is watching as to what is going to happen; everybody is concerned, even the children are concerned, how is it that some States have banned and some States have not banned. And there is a concern. So, it is an important issue. Let us take it in all seriousness. It is all right that you may differ with the Minister or the Minister may differ with you; that is not very important. It is not important. Let us not create any controversy. Otherwise, in this controversy, the important issue will be forgotten. Please carry on, Mr. Minister.

DR. ANBUMANI RAMDOSS: Thank you, Sir. Like I have been saying earlier that the issue is the health issue and the Government has been propagating these health issues, this pesticide issue is a regulatory issue, a short-term issue. The health issue is going to be a long-term issue; that is why, we have to make holistic policies, and that is why, I am trying to create a little bit of awareness. To say that the statement was a suo motu statement, the statement made by me,......(Interruptions)...

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* Expunged as ordered by the Chair.

 

SHRI N. JOTHI: Sir, that is not correct. ...(Interruptions)... Sir, the Speaker has asked him to submit the report. It is not a suo motu statement. He was compelled to make a statement......(Interruptions)...

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: That is all right, but to say that......(Interruptions)... In fact, you are bringing politics.....(Interruptions)... Mr. Jothi, looking into the larger aspect of it, not on every word, you go on interrupting the Minister. ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI N. JOTHI: It is not a charity. ...(Interruptions)...

SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: In this House, it is a suo motu statement. ...(Interruptions)...

MR. DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: Mr. Narayanasamy, please sit down. ...(Interruptions)... I would like to know from the hon. Members whether you are interested to discuss this issue.

SHRI N. JOTHI: Yes, Sir. (Followed by TMV/3Q)

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