India is an agriculture based country with Punjab as one of the leading food grain producing states. There is an ever increasing burden to feed the growing population. This has led to over-usage of pesticides which on one hand has contributed significantly to increase the crop yield while on the other hand has led to sharp increase in the poisoning cases in the region. The present study was undertaken to study the deaths related to poisoning in Malwa region of Punjab in 2010 with a view to assess the pattern, trends and incidence of poisoning in relation to age, sex, area, season and type of poison used. These constituted 17.6% of all the unnatural deaths. From the available data the mortality rate from poisoning in Patiala district comes to 60 per million; whereas for males it is 81 per million and for females it is 35 per million. The mortality rate from poisoning in urban population is 78 per million whereas in rural population it is 50 per million. The results of the present study have been compared to those from India and around the world. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd and Faculty of Forensic and Legal Medicine. All rights reserved.