Skip to main content

Rejoinder: Story on presence of carcinogenic chemical in detergents 'factually incorrect'

By Satish Sinha*
This is to draw your attention on the news story, “Nirma told to publicly declare it's 'not using' carcinogenic chemical in detergents”, by Rajiv Shah. We would like to assert that the report is factually incorrect and misrepresents facts. The author has incorrectly attributed quotes that were never mentioned and some have been incorrectly contextualized. We completely disagree with the text and find the reporting misleading.
Produced below are many quotes as mentioned in the report that were either not made by Toxics Link or has been incorrectly contextualized.
1. Sinha warned: "So far, we have not made public results of the tests we have carried out of the detergents produced by Nirma and others. Nirma has the option to put up a message on the detergents it sells in the market stating they do not contain nonylphenol. However, if they don't do it, we will be left with no other option to make public chemical analysis of the detergents. It would make big headlines, which would be embarrassing for Nirma."
Comments: The reporter has incorrectly quoted Mr Sinha here. It was only stated that if we do carry out another testing we shall quote the names of brands.
2. They have been making strange claims. But we have checked. The Patanjali detergents also contain the harmful chemical.
Answering a question on whether Toxics Link has analysed Patanjali detergents, which Baba Ramdev claims do not contain and harmful chemicals, Sinha said, "It's a serious issue. They are powerful people. So, we generally avoid naming them, because they can harm us." However, he hastened to add, "They have been making strange claims. But we have checked. The Patanjali detergents also contain the harmful chemical..."

Comments: We have never said that they are making strange claim. Also the entire quote is misleading and half-truth.
3. Sinha said, "We as NGO are very small. We do not have enough funds for creating such a data base. Even for small tests we have to approach institutes like Indian Institute of Technology." Answering a question, he suggested, industrial houses like Nirma, if they are really serious about not using harmful chemicals, could fund for the creation of such data house. The Nirma representative, however, said, it was difficult to say whether the industrial house could provide money.
Comments: The above text is false and imagination of the author. This is for purpose of causing sensation.
4. What is most worrisome, however, is neither the industry nor the government knows even the ABC of chemicals being used, as a result of which, at international fora, when concerns are raised, we cut a sorry figure.
Comments: This statement is entirely wrong and misunderstood.
We have a strong objection the way the news story has been portrayed with misleading quotes and wrong information. We would like to put on your notice that the other news agencies also have carried out the similar stories, however their statements are not misleading and misquoted.
Therefore we urged you to take necessary actions in this direction.
---
*Associate director, Toxics Link
*** 

Rajiv Shah replies:

First of all, the Toxics Link report released at the roundtable “Dirty Trail Detergent to Water bodies” (click HERE to download), states, “A set of 12 detergent powder (including two duplicate) samples from a local market in New Delhi … were collected.” It adds, “Known and easily available brands were chosen…”
It reports the results as follows: “In the present study, twelve detergents samples (including two duplicate) were collected and analyzed. All of the analyzed samples detected Nonylphenol in the concentration which varied between 0.82 and 11.92 wt%. The highest concentration was observed in detergent 3, while the lowest was in detergent 9.”
A screenshot from "Dirty Trail"
The report does not mention the brands. It is Toxics Link's option whether to make public the names of the brands.
Secondly, my report is based on the proceedings of the roundtable, when none of the reporters from other media were present. The organisers did not say that proceedings were off the record. 
I have nothing more to add.

Comments

Jag Jivan said…
A typical NGO response. Running with hare and hunting with hounds.

TRENDING

Nobel laureates join international figures, seek release of Bhima Koregaon accused activists

Nobel laureates Olga Tokarczuk,  Wole Soyinka Counterview Desk  As many as 57 top international personalities, including Nobel laureates, academics, human rights defenders, lawyers cultural personalities, and members of Parliament of European countries, have urged the Prime Minister and the Chief Justice of India to ensure immediate release of human rights defenders in India “into safe conditions”.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Top ex-Gujarat babu tells Modi: Not yoga but solar system is our biggest source of energy

By Rajiv Shah  An email alert to Counterview from a top ex-IAS bureaucrat, termed as Gujarat’s turnaround man for revamping loss-making state public sector undertakings (PSUs), has sought to take a dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s remark on the Yoga day – that the ancient Indian exercise provides an “infinite solutions” within ourselves, offering “the biggest source of energy in the universe.”

Hunger, lack of food security behind India's 'slip' in UN's sustainable development rank

By Dr Gian Singh*  According to a report released by the United Nations on June 6, 2021, India's ranking of achieving Sustainable Development based on the 17 Social Development Goals (SDGs) set by the 193 countries in the 2003 agenda, which was 115th last year, has slipped to 117th position this year. India ranks not only the lowest among the BRICS countries -- Brazil, the Russian Federation, India, China, and South Africa but also below the four South Asian countries -- Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and Bangladesh.

Collapse of healthcare system? Why 90% of Covid patients treated at home survived

By Bobby Ramakant, Sandeep Pandey* Well known Hindustani classical singer Padma Vibhu shan Channulal Mishra, chosen as one of the proposers of Narendra Modi in Lok Sabha elections, lost his wife and elder daughter to Covid in private hospitals in Varanasi. Younger daughter has accused Medwin Hospital of charging Rs 1.5 lakh for treatement of her sister and not being able to explain the cause of death. Pandit Channulal Mishra has asked for a probe into his daughter’s death from the Chief Minister. The family has also asked for the CCTV footage of the ward where deceased daughter was admitted for a week.

Rooted in mistrust? Covid-19’s march into rural India is a very different ball game

By Sudhir Katiyar* As the Covid-19 virus penetrates rural India, the rural communities are responding very differently from their urban counterparts who rushed to the hospitals. The rural communities are avoiding the public health facilities and any mention of the disease. The note argues that this supposedly irrational response is based on a deep-seated mistrust of the state by the rural communities. It can not be resolved with routine Information, Education and Communication (IEC) measures suggested in the Government of India SOP for tackling Covid-19 in rural areas.

Courageous, in-depth attempt to confirm common spiritual values of Christ, Buddha

By RB Sreekumar, IPS*  All religions, both theistic and atheistic designed conceptual and practical architecture, for holistic and comprehensive elevation and enlightenment of humanity. PK Vijayan, in his novel “Nirvana of Jesus Christ” (Notion Press, 2020) through creative imagination portrayed personality evolution of the two progenitors of God-centric and sagaciously logical major religions – Jesus Christ of Christianity and Gautama Buddha of Buddhism.

Why hasn't Govt of India responded to US critique of freedom of religion under Modi?

By Fr Cedric Prakash SJ* About two weeks ago, on May 12, 2021, the US Secretary of State Antony J Blinken released in Washington the ‘2020 International Religious Freedom Report.’ This official annual report of the US Government details the status of religious freedom in nearly 200 foreign countries and territories and describes US actions to support religious freedom worldwide. Mandated by the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998, this report highlights the fact that ‘religious freedom is both a core American value and a universal human right’.

Covid fear? Cremation rituals gone upside down, Dalits asked to do Brahminical rituals

By Abhay Jain, Sandeep Pandey*  As Covid consumes human life in a very conspicuous way we are confronted with additional problem of disposing of human corpses. Cremation grounds are lit with continuous pyres, graveyards are running out of land and now Ganga has become a mass grave potentially polluting its water.