Muddle over nod for GM mustard


In May, the Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) cleared the controversial transgenic mustard, DMH-11, for commercial cultivation. However the records of that meeting, held on May 12 and now made public, do not record any such approval.

Hiatus indicated

On the contrary these records actually suggest a hiatus.

“Subsequent to receipt of various representations from different stakeholders, matters related to environmental release of transgenic Mustard are kept pending for further review,” says the minutes of the meeting viewed by The Hindu.

On May 12, The Hindu had quoted GEAC Chairperson Amita Prasad as saying: “We have cleared it [GM mustard] for four years subject to certain field conditions. It was a unanimous decision with no dissent and all concerns around safety and the need for such a plant were discussed by the most eminent experts we have.”

Though cleared by the GEAC, a full release is contingent on approval by the Environment Minister.

Several other news outlets too reported this pegged on Ms. Prasad’s statement.

Typo, says official

When contacted, Ms. Prasad, who is also Additional Secretary in the Union Environment Ministry, attributed the omission to a “typographical error.”

She said that a revised order — specifying that the GEAC had recommended the crop — would be made public soon.

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Corrections and clarifications: Amita Prasad was wrongly referred to as a male. It has been corrected.

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Printable version | Jun 22, 2021 8:03:50 PM |

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