COVID-19 fear is real. Humanity around the world is facing an unprecedented challenge that affects families and loved ones. We want to be safe and healthy.
In an hour like this, you don’t want to be in any more trouble. But do you know that there is a real threat lurking in your home that could endanger your health and that of your family?
Well, it’s the time of malaria and dengue and it’s natural to use cheap and inexpensive incense sticks with mosquito repellent at home to keep loved ones safe. However, it is a big mistake. These incense sticks that you use can harm the health of loved ones and are a slow poison.
Please note that these are not your normal agarbattis or scented pens that you use at home for pooja / worship, but mosquito-repellent incense sticks. While the approved and trademarked incense sticks with mosquito repellent are safe, there are many such incense sticks made by night flyers.
According to Government of India regulations, any household insecticide product, including mosquito repellent incense sticks, must be approved by the Central Insecticide Board (CIB). The CIB conducts rigorous testing of such products for toxicity and safety. There are many such companies making fake or unapproved mosquito repellent incense sticks and people are unaware of the health hazards. These are produced on site without official approval. The levels of chemicals and pesticides used in such incense sticks vary. Because chemicals and pesticides are added to these illegal incense sticks, they kill mosquitos, but the smoke from these incense sticks is equally harmful to humans.
While the sellers and manufacturers of the incense sticks sold under names like Comfort Incense, Relax, Killer, Kwick Sleep, Moonlight, and Night Surakhsa claim that they (repellants) are natural and contain citronella (lemongrass) when they actually don’t use a Registered toxic carbamate pesticide called “Fenobucarb” / Dichlorvos or similar. This has been proven by an independent laboratory test by BTRA (Bombay Textile Research Association) and Geo-chem. This toxic pesticide is used in Agarbattis without proper authentication by the Central Insecticide Board.
And how does it affect you?
Let’s hear from Dr. Shampa Nag, advisor to Caritas, a grassroots development and social organization, said: “Vector-borne diseases like malaria, dengue fever, chikungunya, etc. remain a public health threat in India. With the ongoing threat of mosquito-borne diseases, people in both urban and rural areas are looking for quick and affordable solutions to protect themselves. Then fake and illegal gamblers emerge who make and sell all kinds of mosquito repellants, including incense sticks (agarbattis), which sometimes even contain toxic ingredients like pesticides and other harmful chemicals. While it’s important to be protected from mosquito bites and potentially horrific diseases, it makes sense to only use government-approved formulations and products. Information on suitable personal protection measures should be promoted comprehensively and sustainably, among other things. “
Any use of these illegal incense sticks is very risky for citizens of all ages, especially children and the elderly. The toxic pesticide you inhale can cause various health problems such as asthma, bronchitis, reactive respiratory diseases, and other respiratory diseases.
Yeah, it’s pretty scary.
In view of the health threats to people, enforcement actions are being carried out by government agencies in Telangana, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu. A large group of these illegal incense brands and manufacturers reside in these locations. When the authorities raid such institutions, the perpetrators evade the law and mushroom elsewhere to continue their dirty business.
Consumers should avoid or stop buying such illegal and unauthorized poisonous mosquito repellent agarbattis to drive away mosquitoes.
Industry associations like the Home Insect Control Association (HICA), a nonprofit industry organization that promotes the safe use of household insecticides, are waging war and supporting the government against these illegal incense manufacturers. HICA is actively involved in consumer education and action. Recently, a public interest campaign with an awareness film was launched across India to encourage people to avoid cheap or illegal mosquito repellent incense sticks or to avoid contravening regulations.
Jayant Deshpande, Secretary and Director of the Home Insecticide Control Association (HICA) said, “There is a need to educate consumers about unregulated illegal mosquito repellent incense sticks on the market. Products made by unscrupulous gamblers do not go through the regulated manufacturing processes and basic reviews of skin, eye, and respiratory safety parameters prescribed for all household insecticide products. All illegal mosquito-repellent incense sticks are against the norms and are not tested for the above parameters. Any use of these illegal incense sticks with mosquito repellent is very risky for citizens of all ages. “
We could no longer agree. There are plenty of such comments and reviews on social media where people have pointed out the harmful effects of illegal mosquito repellent incense sticks. For example: “Ise jalane ke baad inhalation me problem hoti hai bahut bekar hai specially jab aapke ghar me bacche hon” (we have inhalation problem after using it, it is a terrible product especially for kids).
The verdict is over. It’s time to be a little more careful to win the battle.
Avoid illegal products and use reputable brands. There are also mosquito-repellent incense sticks that are approved and made from 100% natural ingredients like Goodknight’s new neem agarbatti. It’s made from 100% natural neem and haldi to keep you and your family safe from all types of mosquitoes for up to 3 hours, including those that spread dengue, malaria, and chikungunya. Branded incense sticks have the required regulatory approvals and are safe to use
Choose the right and real mosquito repellent incense sticks, be sure, be healthy!
Disclaimer: No Deccan Chronicle journalist was involved in the creation of this content. The group also assumes no responsibility for this content.