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Regulator to decide about Bt brinjal

india Updated: Oct 13, 2009 19:43 IST
PTI
Highlight Story

Country's biotechnology regulator will decide the fate of the Genetically Modified Bt brinjal on Wednesday in the backdrop of the controversy surrounding GM crops.

Genetically Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) will assess the recommendations of a special committee set up to study Mahyco's biosafety data accumulated for over nine years of its research on Bt brinjal.

"We will discuss the report prepared by our experts on the basis of which the fate of the Bt brinjal is likely to be decided on Wednesday," BS Parsheera, chairman of GEAC, said.

If approved, a GM food will be introduced to Indians for the first time even as food-experts have raised concern over the lack of bio-safety data of such crops having environmental implications in the country.

GM crops are those in which genetic material (DNA) is altered for some perceived advantage either to the producer or the consumer.

Groups opposed to the introduction of GM foods say there has not been adequate independent testing to verify the results of Mahyco's research.

"We believe there are many risks associated with Bt brinjal that need to be tested," said Sridevi Lakshmikutty of the Coalition for a GM-free India.

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