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Jul 16, 2010

India - Parliamentary Panel Studies Pros and Cons of GM Crops

Dr. Deepak Pental, member of
India's GEAC, Professor
of Genetics and Vice Chancellor,
Delhi University photo courtesy
of Delhi University
On 16 July 2010 the Economic Times (India) reported that a Indian parliamentary standing committee attached to the ministry of agriculture was examining the pros and cons of commercializing gene modified (GM) crops in India. 

At the first meeting of the parliamentary panel, four experts testified.  They included:

  1. Dr. Deepak Pental - Vice Chancellor, Delhi University and member of the Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) that approved BT brinjal in October 2009.
  2. Basudeb Acharia - CPM parliamentary party leader
  3. Dr S Nagarajan - Chairman, National Plant Variety Protection and Farmers’ Rights Authority and an expert in wheat breeding;
  4. Dr V S Chauhan - Director, International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology and an expert in medical biotechnology.
All the experts recommended passage of a new law drafted in 2008 that would create a National Biotechnology Authority, which would replace the current GEAC and set up a new regulatory process.  They also addressed the impact of GM food, especially BT brinjal on the Indian people and the environment.

The committee is expected to call additional witnesses.

For more see related blogs:

No Immediate End in Sight to Ban on BT Brinjal, 13 May 2010.

Six Indian Scientific Academies to Study BT Brinjal, 29 March 2010.

WSJ - The Pros and Cons of Agricultural Biotech in India, 15 March 2010.

India Places Moratorium on BT Brinjal, 25 February 2010.

For the original article see: Kumar, Devesh. "Parliamentary panel studies pros and cons of GM food," Economic Times (India), 16 July 2010.

About Margaret

CEO and Curator (The Food Museum) | Managing Director and Chief Editor (GR2 Global LLC) | Educator (UCLA PhD) | Researching and writing on global food issues, nutrition and health, sustainability, history (preservation), conservation (natural resources), and design.
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