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Govt panel wants BT Cotton rules amended

GEAC has asked the government to approach SC to seek amendment to the condition that all GM crop fields should be isolated by 200 metres, reports Chetan Chauhan.

business Updated: Jun 30, 2007 02:43 IST
Chetan Chauhan

The Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) has asked the government to approach Supreme Court to seek amendment to the condition that all GM crop fields should be isolated by 200 metres. The committee said the condition was neither scientifically justifiable nor would serve the purpose of containing of pollens.



The committee pointed out that the condition was not as per the "scientifically developed" minimum standards for seed certification by Indian Council for Agriculture Research (ICAR) and the ones prescribed under the Seed Act. The ministry of Environment and Forest officials on Friday said the government was considering the GEAC proposal.



But, till the court directions are amended, the committee decided that the isolation distance of 200 metres would be maintained. In cases, where Seed Standards Certification mandates a larger isolation distance, the standards would be applicable.



Alongwith court's condition, the committee has prescribed a new regulations for field trials. No more farmers' fields can be used for trials. Instead, the companies will have to use their own or the land leased for three years.