Nearly one-fourth of pesticide samples sold in open market are substandard and losses on account of use of such spurious products are estimated at ₹30,000 crore to the farming community, Bharatiya Krishak Samaj (BKS), a farmers’ body said on Monday.

According to BKS, 13 out of a total 50 samples of pesticides sold in open market have been found to be substandard in a test conducted at a government lab.

BKS’s president Krishna Bir Chaudhary alleged that pesticide inspectors and lab analysts at the State level, connive with manufacturers for sale of such substandard and spurious products.

He called for strict action against them.

“We collected samples of 50 pesticides, of which 23 were bio-pesticides for analysis by NABL Accredited government laboratory - the Institute of Pesticide Formulation Technology, Gurgaon,” he told reporters here. Four samples were found to be sub-standard, and nine samples of bio-pesticides failed the test as they contained chemicals, he added. “Farmers are being cheated by manufacturers of substandard and spurious pesticides. Such manufacturers are supplying chemical pesticides in the name of bio-pesticides,” Chaudhary said.

He claimed that manufactures of such sub-standard pesticides make over ₹5,000 crore, while losses to farmers due to spurious pesticides is over ₹30,000 crore.

Chaudhary said the organisation spent about ₹5 lakh to draw these samples and gett it tested.