The state government of Kerala is willing to write to the Centre against Genetic Engineering Approval Committee's (GEAC) plan to approve genetically modified (GM) mustard.
This sudden reaction came after stiff opposition by a section of scientists, activists and public outcry against GM food crop. The arguments involves that it poses a serious health hazard to humans.
"We are against the entry of GM food crops as they pose serious health hazards. We are also opposing the Centre's plan to permit field trials of GM mustard," agriculture minister V S Sunil Kumar said.
"We have cited seven reasons for opposing GM food crops. The reasons include that GM crops would end original species diversity, GM food is scientifically proven to cause health hazard, GM seeds induce sterility etc,” he added.
Pointing out more reasons Kumar said, “Multi-national corporations will have the monopoly in seed development, traditional agriculture sector will disappear, GM food crop is not productive and it will affect the existing production."
Kumar said if the Centre permits field trials of GM seed, it will contaminate other crops. "If Centre gives approval for GM food crops then it will be dangerous. Every citizen has a right to safe food and entry of GM food crops is in violation of that," he said.
GM mustard called `Dhara Mustard Hybrid 11' has been developed by Centre for Genetic Manipulation of Crop Plants, University of Delhi, with support from department of biotechnology and National Dairy Development Board.