The Government of India confirms national ban on Terminator

Ban Terminator Campaign Breaking News, November 14, 2005 http://www.banterminator.org

The Government of India confirms national ban on Terminator

The Government of India has given final notification confirming the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmer’s Rights Act, Act 53 of 2001, which prohibits registration of plant varieties containing Terminator genes.

The Act contains the following language:

"18. (1) Every application for registration under section 14 shall— (c) be accompanied by an-affidavit sworn by the applicant that such variety does not contain any gene or gene sequence involving terminator technology"

Farmers hail PVP & FR Act notification ASHOK B SHARMA, Financial Express, Bombay, India Posted online: Monday, November 14, 2005 at 0000 hours IST New Delhi, Nov 13 Farmers have hailed the government’s decision to notify the Plant Varieties Protection and Farmers’ Rights (PVP&FR) Act, 2001. They said that though the decision is belated, it would solve the farmers’ problems to a great extent.

The legislation was passed by Parliament way back in 2001 and received Presidential assent in the same year, but was withheld from notification, which prevented its implementation over the past few years.

The Act, apart from protecting farm bio-diversity, allows farmers to save and exchange seeds in unbranded form for use in the next crop season. The Act has also banned registration of seeds containing terminator technology vide section 18 (1) (C).

The government has recently constituted Plant Varieties Protection and Farmers’ Rights Board under the chairmanship of Dr S Nagarajan for implementation of the Act.

Speaking to FE, executive chairman of Bharat Krishak Samaj (BKS) Dr Krishan Bir Chaudhary said: “The PVP&FR Act was long withheld from its implementation due to pressure from the interested lobby of seed companies. This law gives some leverage to farmers in matters of use of seeds, though not complete freedom. There had been recent attempts to nullify this meagre freedom given to farmers under this Act by the introduction of amendments to the Seeds Act in the Parliament. The farmers will not tolerate any such move and demand immediate withdrawal of the proposed amendments to the Seeds Act. Rather PVP&FR Act should be further amended to give more freedom to farmers.”

Dr Chaudhary had earlier expressed concern over Delta & Pine Land announcing its new plans to foray into the seed sector, after it got patent rights for its terminator technology in patent offices abroad. He now said that with the notification of PVP&FR Act, the country is better poised to deal with this situation.

Dr Chaudhary was the sole farmers’ representative to the recently held global conference on biotechnology hosted by Asia-Pacific Association of Agriculture Research Institutions (APAARI) and FAO in Bangkok where he demanded that the seed multinationals compensate farmers for failure of Bt cotton.

URL: http://www.financialexpress.com/fe_full_story.php?content_id=108540

Below is the press release from the Government of India:



New Delhi, Kartika 20, 1927 November 11, 2005

The Protection of Plant Variety & Farmers’ Rights (PPV&FR) Authority has come into being with the enforcement of the Act, 2001, and the Rules framed thereunder. A notification to this effect was issued today by the Department of Agriculture & Cooperation. The Authority would now regulate all matters pertaining to plants and seeds varieties of the country and would act as the national registry for documentation, indexing and cataloguing of all flora of the country, including extant varieties, farmers’ varieties and land races. The Authority will also be registering new varieties thereby protecting the breeders’ rights, inclusive of both farmers and the industry.

The Authority represents the interests of a wide spectrum of stakeholders, which include the scientific community, farmers’ organizations, women, tribal entities and State and Central Government as also the State Agricultural Universities.

The PPV&FR Authority is a major step forward in stimulating investment in the agricultural seed and plant sector and would greatly encourage development of new plant varieties. It will protect the interests and rights of farmers and the farming community and recognize their contribution to the selection and preservation of traditional varieties. The Authority also has the mandate to administer the National Gene Fund which ill help conserve and protect our plant genetic resources/biodiversity.

The PPV&FR Authority is presently functioning out of the premises of National Agricultural Science Centre at Pusa, New Delhi, and is headed by Dr. S Nagarajan, recently appointed as its chairman.


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