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Pesticide exposure of farm community causing illness symptoms in upper Jhelum Basin of Kashmir Himalaya, India


Ever growing population constantly puts pressure on natural resources to manage the demands for their survival. This is particularly true with the agriculture sector concerning food and cash crops. Pesticides have become an inseparable part of the current agriculture and horticulture system but at the same time are adding adverse impacts on the human health and entire ecosystems. A Cross-sectional study was conducted on 500 farmers to appraise the association of pesticide toxins and self-reported health status among the farmers by using suitable statistical and mathematical techniques. In the study, most frequently reported symptoms of health issues among the respondents were related to eye illness (blurred vision, irritation), among both sprayers (43.1%) and (11%) in non-sprayers, with relatively high risk rate (RR = 3.9), followed by illnesses such as nervous disorders (headache, dizziness), 39% (sprayers) & 21.5% (non-sprayers) and skin illnesses i.e. skin itching and allergies. Chi-square analysis and odds ratios show a significant association between the farmer’s education, use of safety measures and pesticide poisoning. The study hence, revealed the role of educational and training interventions on pesticide handling at the community and panchayat level.

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Fig. 1

Source: Generated from SOI toposheet 1971

Fig. 2

Source: SOI Toposheet 1971 & Satellite Image 2017

Fig. 3

Data Availability

Study was based on field survey conducted through questionnaire & Annexure is attached to it.


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The authors are thankful and offer sincere gratitude to the department of Geography, University of Kashmir for providing space and friendly environment while conducting this research work. The authors also express their sincere gratitude to respondents who spend their time to fill the questionnaire and answering the questions. Further, we would like to thank reviewers for their valuable comments & suggestions. Our special thanks to Mr. Hilal Ahmad (English Lecturer in JK higher education department) for rectifying typing errors. Special thanks to the department of Geography & Disaster Management, University of Kashmir- Srinagar for providing conducive environment to conduct this study.


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MIG, MAW have designed the work, MIG, AD have collected and arranged the required data, data analysis and interpretation done by MIG, MAW, IAM. MIG, MAW, IAM drafted the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Manzoor A. Wani.

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Ganaie, M.I., Wani, M.A., Dev, A. et al. Pesticide exposure of farm community causing illness symptoms in upper Jhelum Basin of Kashmir Himalaya, India. Environ Dev Sustain 24, 13771–13785 (2022).

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