The Supreme Court-appointed joint expert committee (JEC) on the disposal of existing stocks of banned pesticide endosulfan wants using it over two years, as part of a phaseout plan, as its disposal would be costly and time-consuming.
The JEC in its recommendation to the apex court bench of Justice Swatanter Kumar and Justice Madan B. Lokur Tuesday said that the "phasing out of endosulfan appears to be the most viable plan".
"Disposals of the stocks of endosulfan in existing incinerators may take long duration due to the limited capacity and the cost of the disposals would be exorbitant and also prohibitive," the JEC told the court.
The report said that incineration would require a dedicated operation for several years and cost Rs.1,189 crore.
The committee noted that India was a signatory to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants and the Rotterdam Convention for Prior-Informed Consent was committed to discontinue the use of endosulfan over the next five years.
Almost all the countries which have banned endosulfan had a phase out plan ranging from two years to six years, it said.
The JEC said that "to exhaust the available stocks of raw material, manufacture and use of endosulfan may be permitted for a total period of two years".
The manufacturing and marketing companies should be asked to ensure complete use of the available raw material during the period, the committee said.
The states which permitted the use of endosulfan should keep detailed inventory control and ensure strict monitoring of the people and places where endosulfan may be used, it said.
The JEC gave its recommendation to the apex court during a hearing on a plea by the Democratic Youth Federation of India, the youth wing of the Communist Party of India-Marxist, seeking total ban on the use, manufacture and marketing of endosulfan.