Sunday, Mar 31, 2002
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By Our Special Correspondent
In a statement, the CPI(M) politburo said the wisdom of using the Bt cotton seed was being questioned by many scientists. The technology was being propagated by the U.S.-based seed multinational, Monsanto. The technology of genetic modification was still too unpredictable to warrant widespread replication, given the irreversible nature of the technology. " Past experience shows that it is still difficult to predict the course of such organisms accurately''.
The party noted that while India had rushed in to allow genetically modified crops, trials of genetically engineered organisms had been banned or restricted in countries of the European Union, Japan, Brazil and many other countries. England, it said, had been harsh in not allowing GM crops and even Monsanto's staff canteen in England was not allowed to use GM foods.
It said that such technologies promoted monoculture by precluding the use of different varieties of crops in the same area and such cropping techniques were especially vulnerable to extensive damage by pests and sudden climatic changes like drought, as was seen in Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh.
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