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20.01.2018 |

Modi Govt Being Blackmailed by MNCs on GM Crops, Say RSS-Linked Farmers' Unions

New Delhi: RSS-affiliated farmers' unions Swadeshi Jagran Manch (SJM) and Bharatiya Kisan Sangh (BKS) have termed Mayhco Monsanto Biotech’s (MMB) letter to the government on Bt Cotton seeds as an attempt to 'blackmail', pressurise the government.

MMB had written to the Centre terming the National Seeds Association’s threat to stop the sale of Bolllgard 11 seeds as ‘irresponsible’ and against farmer’s interest.

"It is an attempt to coerce the key stakeholders and create a crisis for farmers," the company said.

In response, BKS' general secretary Mohini Mohan said, “The government is under pressure from these MNCs. For years they have been failing the tests yet they have stayed on. Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee, which is the regulatory body has failed to curb them.”

Mohan further alleges that Bollgard I had failed in 2005, which was followed by Bollgard II’s failure in 2009. “The MNC came up with Herbicide tolerant seed, which lead to farmer suicides in Yavatmal, Maharashtra. Around 80 farmers have died. Monsanto is blackmailing the government, which is under pressure from these lobbies,” he said.

“Monsanto should go back, as it is important for seed sovereignty. We can produce our own seeds like we did in the past. There is no need to have the domination of a few seeds. The Bollgard XI continues without any call-back from authorities,” Mohan alleges.

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