Soft drinks sold in India by Coca Cola Co and PepsiCo Inc contain pesticide residue, according to a parliamentary probe. The investigation has called for tougher national health standards, according to local press reports.

The probe was ordered after environmental group the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) claimed last year that 12 of the companies' soft drinks had high levels of pesticides in them.

The 184-page report concluded that the CSE claims that there were pesticide residues in soft drinks stood. But it stopped short of advising Indians to avoid the soft drinks, but called for the country to adopt more stringent safety standards.

In a statement, Coca Cola India denied that its drinks posed any health hazards. PepsiCo has also denied the charge.

The report said: "It is prudent to seek complete freedom from pesticide residues in sweetened aerated waters."