NCP supremo Pawar supports GM crops and their trials in the country
Sharad Pawar, the leader of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), said on Sunday that conducting trials of genetically modified (GM) crops was illegal in India, despite the fact that such agricultural produce could be imported.
Because such trials are prohibited in India, the country could not proceed with GM crops, he said. Mr. Pawar further added at an event organized by his party in Amravati, Maharashtra, that the Supreme Court previously made decisions on GM crops, and the consequences can be seen today. He added that this must be changed.
‘Today, we are fine with (GM) American food grains (oil seeds), but farmers are not allowed to grow anything derived from GM,’ Pawar explained. India and the Future of Genetically Modified Crops. When asked to elaborate at a press conference following the event, Pawar stated that edible oil from a GM crop is imported into India from Malaysia, Brazil, and America.
India buys GM oil seeds, processes them, and then sells the oil to its people, but GM crop trials are prohibited in the country, according to him.
‘ How will farmers get new varieties if trials are not conducted?’ Pawar asked.
According to the veteran politician, the Centre’s policy on GM crops is that trials must be conducted for three consecutive years and there must be no side effects, including those on animals.
‘Today, because trials are prohibited, we could not proceed (with the GM crop),’ he explained. Pawar also stated that the Centre should be forced to implement a more practical Minimum Support Price (MSP) policy.
He stated that the opposition parties believed the MSP guarantee was required in the three farm bills introduced by the Narendra Modi government, which had to be repealed later.