Worlds Hottest Peppers Mitilarized

How hot does a chili need to be, before it is turned into a weapon, thus giving new meaning to the term 'food fight'? The war against terrorism is about to escalate to a new level, as the growers of the world’s hottest pepper get into a whole new market.

The Indian military is about to use the thumb-sized 'bhut jolokia', or 'ghost chili' to make tear gas-like hand grenades. These will immobilize suspects, say defense officials.

The 'bhut jolokia' was registered by Guinness World Records in 2007, as the world’s hottest chili. It is grown and eaten in India's northwest as a cure for stomach ailments and some say a way to fight the crippling summer heat.

Classic Tabasco sauce variety from 2,500 to 5,000 units on the Scoville scale, which measures the amount of spiciness. Jalapeno peppers rate anywhere between 2,500 to 8,000 units, while the 'ghost chili' weigh s in at 1,000,000 units. That is a million times stronger than a pepper that makes people cry.

Col. R. Kalia, a defense spokesman, at the northeastern state of Assam's Defense Research and Development Organization said, "The chili grenade has been found fit for use after trials in Indian defense laboratories, a fact confirmed by scientists."

R. B. Srivastava, Director of the Life Sciences Department at the New Delhi headquarters of the DRDO said, "This is definitely going to be an effective nontoxic weapon because its pungent smell can choke terrorists and force them out of their hide-outs."

The 'ghost pepper' can be converted into vapour which is capable of totally immobilizing its victims with pain, without killing them.

Srivastava, who led a defense research laboratory in Assam, said trials are also aiming to produce bhut jolokia-based aerosol sprays. These could be used by women against personal attackers. Police will also use the new weapon to control and disperse crowds.

The major winners in all this will be the farmers who grow the chilli, as they find a completely new and much wider outlet for their hot product.

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