Were pesticide poisoning cases labelled suicide?
Yavatmal: As the state begins a probe into the deaths, it will first have to deal with a conflict, reports Shishir Arya. Agriculture department officials say health should have raised an alarm sooner, while health department says enough agriculture officials are deployed at the grassroots level to know what’s going on.
Out of this, what is emerging is that some deaths due to pesticide inhalation may have been included in the suicide category. Yavatmal records the maximum farmer suicides and consuming pesticides is the common mode of ending life. “Both suicides and sprays are treated as poisoning cases at hospitals and that is the reason perhaps deaths due to spraying may have also been counted as suicides,” said an official in the agriculture department. A senior doctor, with a decade’s experience at the Yavatmal government hospital agreed.