Friday, May 10, 2013

Maharashtra Govt. should come clean on GM CROP

Maharashtra Govt. should come clean on GM crop – VJAS

Nagpur -10th May 2013
*** CICR Nagpur same Hall and two meeting in last seven days ,one chaired by Maharashtra Agriculture Minister Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil  and other by Maharashtra Government’s appointed committee on allowing field tests to genetically modified (GM) crops, headed by Dr Anil Kakodkar but first one admit failure of GM seed and asked officers to promote traditional non-GM seed  but second one review the proposal to grant permission GM seed test in Maharashtra and both the meeting all BaBus  gives green signal but in second meeting the started with fix action plan prepared by MNCs manufacturing GM seed and there was clear directive from PMO ,Union Agri.Ministery and Maharashtra chief minister  to go ahead ***

Maharashtra Agriculture Minister Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil's  last week admission that the genetically modified (GM) Bt cotton had brought no benefits to the farmers but on the other hand seed companies were thriving on it and The state government has decided to promote organic lifestyle and has promised various measures to promote the use of genetically non-modified seeds, providing cold storage, packaging, processing units besides introducing organic produce outlets for famers,
though the state government was mulling over promotion of organic farms since 2003, it formally adopted the policy in 2013 and now intends bring in as much of land under the organic farming as possible but this announcement of Agriculture minister in not in line with hidden agenda of Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan to give entry to US base MNCs  in GM Food crop  as Maharashtra Government’s appointed committee on allowing field tests to genetically modified (GM) crops, headed by eminent nuclear scientist and Dr Anil Kakodkar, held detailed deliberations on the issue in the premises of CICR on Wednesday. Hence what is state policy regarding GM seed as  Bt cotton has been the only GM crop allowed in India, but private corporations have been lobbying to bring in GM rice, tomato, wheat and so on. Bt Brinal was attempted too, but the then environment minister Jairam Ramesh had stopped the release in 2010. In August 2012, technical experts appointed by the Supreme Court recommended a 10-year moratorium on all field trials of GM food crops. But, Kakodkar committee may throw the doors open for new GM seeds, the duel policy stand of Maharashtra Govt. has crated doubts  about Agri. Ministry stand to make ‘ Mah. State organic farming state ’ ,Vidarbha Janandolan Samiti(VJAS) convener Kishore Tiwari urged CM to come clean on this issue .
‘There are many serious issues of GM seed using in food crop as more than 80 crore population who are vegetarian are having objection more over in line with majority of developed  countries  in Indian too more than 10 states already rejected the proposal of any GM seed test in their field hence Maharashtra which is already farm suicide graveyard and first approved GM seed Bt.cotton seed has major role in these cotton farmers’ suicides  hence we are opposing BRAI and Kakodkar committee  as GEAC is likely to be bypassed so as environment Clarence of GOI hemce this appeal’Tiwari added.
Last Year  parliamentary standing panel visited vidarbha  released a report admitting massive failure of  Bt cotton  after they verified truth and studied  14,862 documents, and evidence from 50 organizations working in food safety and environmental issues whereas Maharashtra is classic example where Around 5 million cotton farmer have adopted GM  Bt.cotton seed for cotton cultivation that is done in 41 lakh hectares and  Now, the state government has finally admitted that Bt cotton is adding to farmers' distress even as 95% of them are using the GM seeds but if Maharashtra CM and Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar has already decided to push GM seed in food crop,   there no way to stop the onslaught of GM seeds even when BRAI bill is till pending in parliament, Tiwari added.

"Till around 1970, Vidarbha farmers cultivated cotton using seeds from their own plants. With the introduction of hybrid seeds, the yields increased but so did the need for costly fertilizers and insecticides. Agriculturists have also blamed the restrictions and royalties placed on GM seeds by multinational companies for the spurt in suicides. Unlike traditional seeds, GM seeds are non-renewable and must be purchased every year. Today, they dominate the market," said Tiwari.

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