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Posts Tagged ‘Agriculture

MOEF: REJECT Bt.BRINJAL

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Dear Mr. Ramesh
I am Sudarshan.  I am writing to you with respect to the ongoing consultations  between your Ministry and the people of India regarding commercial cultivation of Bt. Brinjal. At the outset, I would like to commend you for seeking public opinion on this key decision while your fellow colleagues have been very keen to rubber stamp the approval of Bt. Brinjal.

Sir, Brinjal is a celebrated Indian vegetable and with over 2500 varieties, it represents the rich bio-diversity that symbolizes India. It is unfortunate that your Government is trying to tamper with the King of vegetables by introducing the genetically modified version of the crop.

Sir, there is a genuine belief amongst the people of India that the Government of India looks out for their safety and well-being. By introducing a food-crop that is not fully-tested and there are questions regarding its safety, you will putting a lot of lives at risk – many who have little access to information about the potential negative effects of the crop and many more with no access to quality to health-care.

The Expert Committee of the Ministry of Environment and Forests has certified that this crop will not cross-pollinate with other non-GM varieties after assuming a planting distance of 300m. Such a large distance sounds very impractical for an Indian farm where landholdings are small and the fields are adjacent to each other.

The industry backed lobbying groups are using their advertising dollars to tell the world that there is a huge saving in moving to Bt-vareities of the crop. This is an absolute flat lie because farmers will spend a lot more on buying proprietary seeds from these companies and will be driven deeper into debt.If GM is a magic pill for the woes of the farmers, why is it that more and more farmers are committing suicide and many more are in penury even after they planted Bt.Cotton. Sir, I demand you protect the food sovereignty of India by kicking out the multinational food corporations whose profit-only approach has put many communities at risk.

Sir, most of your counterparts from Europe have banned cultivation of GM varieties and have taken strong stands against corporations like Monsanto and Syngenta hijacking the interests of the farmers and general public.I urge you to listen to the voices of the people who have attended the consultations and have overwhelmingly spoken against Bt.Brinjal.

Thanks
Sudarshan–

PS: If you need references for any of these facts, kindly feel free to write back and I can provide them for you

Written by Sudarshan Suresh

January 30, 2010 at 12:09 pm