March 31, 2023
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Environmentalists launch protest against GMO

The Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee’s move approving the commercial cultivation of the Genetically Modified mustard has been strongly criticised by the environmentalists, calling it as a sham. Saying that they would not shy away from seeking a legal aid, the environmentalists allege that if the government approves the recommendation made by the apex body, that move would stand against the government’s election manifesto in which it assures that it will not promote the GMO. It is learned that the commercial cultivation of the GM mustard would considerably reduce the working days and job opportunity of the workforce working in this sector. It is said that women engaging in the removal of the weeds in the mustard farms are going to be affected the most due to the loss of work as the ‘weeding’ is not needed in the GM mustard farms. Strengthening the allegation that the commercial cultivation of GM mustard is a sham, experts say that we are being told the GM mustard will considerably reduce the edible oil import cost. But, the fact is that we are not facing any shortage of mustard and if we want to reduce the import cost genuinely the authorities easily can do so by increasing the import traffic of this product, they add. There is no doubt that the GMO is a threat to nature, living beings and ecosystem in general. It may encourage the corporate companies to start operation in the agricultural sector. Thus, it is likely to affect the ailing farmers who are doing small scale farming. In fact, the preponderance of the Indian farmers is small scale farmers. Even though there are several positive sides to the GMO, we might not get to enjoy it until we eliminate the flaws in the intellectual property right policy and agricultural policy of our country. We must ask ourselves are we ready to take this risk? An open conversation will do more good than a closed-door-decision-making in this case.


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