September 29, 2009 3:04:34 am
In an attempt to showcase the spirit of Dussehra,of victory of the good over the evil,a group of consumers,students and activists registered their protest against genetically modified foods by burning the effigy of GM food and Vice-Chancellor of PAU Dr MS Kang here this afternoon.
The protesters demanded that PAU should immediately stop field trials of all kinds of GM crops in PAU and Punjab. Protesters led by Rakesh Jain,a consumer activist,Sunil Prabhakar of Kheti Virasat Mission and Harpreet Singh of Punjab Students Union gathered in front of Gate No 2 of Punjab Agricultural University today afternoon and burnt the effigy.
Jain informed,For us,GM food is evil and people siding GM foods are siding the evil. We chose today to mark this protest for by burning the effigies of evil,that is GM crops,and people who are promoting it.
Jain added,The corporate giant,Monsanto is undertaking trials at PAU on GM Corn which is not acceptable. Instead of taking the side of farmers,the PAU is with the corporations. The protest was coordinated by Ludhiana Chapter of Alliance for GM Free and Safe Food,Punjab.
The protesters urged the PAU not to play into the hands of MNCs,who they claim,wanted to hijack the food security of the nation. The protesters said that the introduction of GM food would have serious implications on our health and was an irreversible technology. GM food,they said,was also a serious threat to food security.
GM Maize will enhance the use of herbicides,which can cause more harm to the ecology. In addition to the evidence on adverse health impacts due to the technology of genetic engineering,there is a growing body of evidence that shows the adverse impacts of chemical herbicides like Glyphosate on our health including on reproductive health. An increase of chemicals in our farming is not desirable at all from a health and environment perspective, said Sunil Prabhakar. Protesters said that the campaign would be further intensified. They said that the PAU would be pressurised to stop the trials of GM Food in its premises.
With PAU closed on occasion of Dussehra,official spokesperson of PAU Dr Jagtar Singh Dhiman remarked,We do not have any information about this protest and moreover VC Dr Kang is away to USA on an official trip.
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