(Dr. krishan Bir Chaudhary)
Deputy Director General (DDG) of Indian Council of Agriculture Research (ICAR) Swapan K Datta wants a tie up with multinational seed companies to strengthen ICAR’s marketing ability across the world. India’s share in the 8.2 billion dollar global seeds’ market is barely 1.2%. The oligopolistic global seed trade is controlled by the same cartel led by Monsanto that also control genetically engineered seeds.
ICAR is a publicly funded division of the Ministry of Agriculture. It’s the second oldest research institution. Starting with Pusa Agriculture Institute in the late 19th C, it has grown into a national network of research institutions but its primary task is to develop seeds and farming methods for India’s farmers. Its most strategic and vital task is to ensure that sufficient quantity of quality seeds are available to farmers across India.
Competing with global oligopoly is not its mandated task. It can’t compete because it does not have the backing of a military power like that of the US and NATO. Datta should note, Monsanto, Syngenta, Bayer, Dow, DuPont are part of the full spectrum domination strategy of US and NATO powers. Their seeds sell not because they are safe or of better quality or even of lower price; their seeds are rammed down the throat of the farmers.
Datta, therefore, has been told to “tie-up” with these multinational corporations. But will India’s seed reach the farmers ever and will Indian farmers and research institutions will be compensated for conserving the unimaginable bio-diversity of seeds? Monsanto’s stated objective is to control global food supply through control over seeds. Can Datta justify this scandalous nexus with multinational seeds’ corporations?
These multinationals have not given the world any seed. Seed variety was developed by farmers. The companies slowly took control over seed variety in North America and Europe; they want to control all seed varieties around the world. They need natural seeds to genetically engineer them for patenting. Once they engineer these seeds and file a patent claim, the seed ownership gets transferred to the companies.
What will Datta’s ICAR get? Rs 5.75 per seed or Rs 5.75 for the whole lot that he wants these multinationals to market globally? The final sell off of Indian seeds to MNCs is being initiated by Swapan K Dutta. Here is the final nail in the coffin of Indian seeds. One man can kill Indian Agriculture, India’s food security and sovereignty. All those billions of rupees of investment by Indian tax-payers over past one hundred years is being handed over the same multinationals who are hell bent on destroying India as nation.
This act is self sufficient to open the eyes of Indian politicians, that how our research institutions are working on the directions of MNC's and how our agricultural scientists are dancing on the tunes of MNC’s. Who has given the right to hand over of more than four lacks plant species and farmers seed varieties Germ-plasm, the natural resources and the richest wealth of the country to MONSANTO? Where our national character has gone? Under IPR regime if we will hand-over our Gene bank to MNC's then food security will be automatically under their control. In future food will be used as a weapon.
The GM technology is dangerous for human and animal health and will spoil the whole environment, many European countries opposing it. In future, MONSANTO wants to introduce the TERMINATOR gene (patented) in all the seeds to make them sterile. Why the government is playing with India’s food security?
(Editorial : Kisan Ki Awaaz Magazine)