Experts at AIIMS and the Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (ICT) have said that pesticide residues, organochlorine, lead, and nickel in blood, milk and vegetables cause mysterious disease that left over 600 people sick in Andhra Pradesh’s Eluru. It is to be noted that one person also lost his life due to the mysterious illness.

The experts mentioned in their reports submitted to the government that the amount of pesticides and herbicides found in the vegatables were more than the permissible limits. A team of scientists at the National Institute of Nutrition (NIN) said that traces of mercury were found in rice and residues of organophosphorous in blood. The NIN, however, added that more study is needed to find out how these materials entered the human body.

Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board conducted a study of the water and did not find presence of heavy metal in water. The Institute of Preventive Medicine said heavy metal was not found in milk.

State Health Commissioner Katamaneni Bhaskar said the government is yet to receive reports related to the analysis of meat and fish.

It is learnt that Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has directed the experts to find out how lead, nickel, organochlorine and organophosphorous entered humans.

The CM has requested the experts from AIIMS, New Delhi, and IICT, Hyderabad, to closely monitor the situation in Eluru and suggest the measures which the government can take to avoid this incident in the future.

CM Reddy has also said that time has come to stop the indiscriminate use of pesticides and insecticides.

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A multi-disciplinary committee has been constituted by the government to probe the source of the infection thoroughly. The 21-member committe will be headed by Chief Secretary Nilam Sawhney.

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