Farmer bodies oppose Indo-US agricultural deal

New Delhi, March 23 | Updated: Mar 24 2006, 05:30am hrs
Farmers and NGOs have come together to oppose the new agricultural deal with the US on farm research. They also lashed at the anti-farmer policies of the government.

A group of NGOs lead by the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology (RFSTE) and Greenpeace India, in collaboration with Bharat Krishak Samaj (BKS), conducted a two-day discussion on various issues affecting the farmers interests.

They apprehended that the US and multinational companies were likely to rob Indias genetic resources in the name of research and patent the same in the long run as was seen in the case of basmati rice, neem and turmeric.

US may exert pressure on the country to relax its regulations on transgenic crops and animals as the development of genetically modified crops is high on its agenda.

Suman Sahai of Gene Campaign alongwith farmer leaders like Yudhvir Singh and Dr Suneelam in a separate meeting demanded that the government make the details of deal public.

Vanadana Shiva and Krishan Bir Chaudhary of Bharat Krishak Samaj charted a future programme of action for generating countrywide awareness.