Traders who artificially ripen fruits are worse than terrorists says Hyderabad HCImage: Wikipedia Commons (CC SA 3.0 - Cephas)
news Thursday, August 20, 2015 - 05:30

The Hyderabad High Court on Wednesday ordered a thorough probe on fruit traders who use the carcinogen calcium carbide to ripen fruits and called them "worse than terrorists."  This comes six days after the HC had asked the state governments of Andhra and Telangana to conduct raids and find out more about the practice and how to put an end to it.

"For earning some extra rupees, you are putting scores of lives at risk. Such traders are worse than terrorists, killing generations of people with slow poison," a Times of India report quotes the acting chief justice said. 

The bench directed both the states to file affidavits and carry out steps to prevent the use of carbide in fruits. Calcium Carbide, a dangerous and corrosive chemical used to make fertilizers and steel, is known to have carcinogenic properties and cause digestive problems.

Yet, it is still widely used to ripen mangoes quickly. Farmers tend to pluck mangoes early as they need to be transported to the market. Once it is in the market, mango traders ripen them artificially to clear their stocks sooner. Moreover, the fruits look more attractive when they are artificially ripened garnering more consumers. But calcium carbide may cause cancer, permanent eye damage, ulcers and even lung issues.


Also Read - Love mangoes? Learn how to spot artificially ripened ones

Become a TNM Member for just Rs 999!
You can also support us with a one-time payment.