Authorities not checking distribution of asbestos

Kathmandu, December 21

The sale and distribution of asbestos, a chemical harmful to human health, is yet to be checked despite the government ban.

Public Health and Environment Promotion Centre has expressed worry over the clandestine sale and distribution of the harmful substance from hardware shops and construction sites.

The heat, fire and rust-resisting substance is full of harmful chemicals.

Although Nepal government had banned its import by issuing a notice on the gazette on December 24, 2014, the clandestine sale of asbestos is rife.

During an interaction organised here today, Minister for Population and Environment Mithila Chaudhary stressed that the Ministry of Supply should conduct strict monitoring of the import of the harmful substance.

Secretary at Ministry of Supply Anil Kumar Thakur informed that authority was being devolved to the local level to make the monitoring mechanism strong at the local level.

Other speakers at the programme said that asbestos was harmful as it could cause fatal disease such as cancer. Asbestos can’t be viewed normally, Thakur said.

Executive Director of the Centre Ram Charitra Saha informed that as asbestos was used mostly in the roofing of houses in the Tarai region, the people there were prone to health hazards.