Nine Chhattisgarh children in hospital after eating jatropha seeds

February 16th, 2009 - 2:24 pm ICT by IANS  

Raipur, Feb 16 (IANS) At least nine children, including three girls, were rushed to a hospital when they fell unconscious after eating jatropha seeds in a Chhattisgarh village, a health official said here Monday.

The children, all below 13, ate the seeds Sunday evening while playing in Mandlaur village in Raipur district.

Village headman Chaitram Devangan took the children to a government hospital in Abhanpur. The children are now reported to be out of danger but have been kept under observation, the health official added.

Jatropha is a plant that grows up to three metres and produces inedible fruits. Several states, including Chhattisgarh, have been planting its saplings in millions in a bid to extract bio-fuel from it.

Some agricultural scientists said eating two seeds would act as a purgative while four or more could cause death.

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