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Towards farm sustainability

IREAD Suman Sahai’s article Corporate food saviours (March 17). The write-up pertains to the corporations, belonging to the consumer industries community of the World Economic Forum, announcing their intention to enter the food business form GM seed to the grain production in a holistic way which by all means should be considered as a progressive step especially with regard to GM technology. These innovative developments hold lot of promise for a developing economy like ours.

It is time for all of us to have a panoptic view that modern methods of agriculture are perhaps providing 80 per cent of the theoretical yield and a transgenic technology can only push it up to 90 per cent in developed countries. On the contrary, we are at 30-40 per cent productivity levels and any technology that can push up the yields, say to 70 per cent, would have a tremendous impact in transforming our agricultural sustainability.

The writer expresses apprehensions that the multinationals will rob us from our indigenous resources. When will the time come when we will have the confidence that our scientific personnel are our guardians with the arsenal of the knowledge and expertise, can sift the grain through the chaff and can point out what is relevant to excellence for our country. After all the story of green revolution revolves around the well knitted international collaboration. The need of hour is to accept the GM technology.

We have to assess what is relevant to our land and lab, have faith in our scientific community and have an innate confidence that nobody can rob us.

The need of the hour is to accept progressive policies in agriculture rather than evade them for petty gains.

Prof (Dr) I.S. DUA, Former Chairman, Dept of Botany, Panjab University, Chandigarh

Builder of institutions?

Harihar Swarup’s profile of Dr Kapila Vatsyayan as a builder of institutions is incorrect (The Tribune, Jan 30). The fact, however, is otherwise. Known as a Cultural Czarina of the erstwhile Department of Culture, she undid every institution she headed or dealt with.

In her leadership, both as Chairman of Commission for Scientific and Technical Terminologyand Joint Educational Adviser (Languages) in the Ministry, the Commission developed terminology only in Hindi at the neglect of other 14 languages. Under her cultural dictatorship, institutions such as the National Museum, the Sanskrit Sansthan, the three Akademis of Art, Literature and Dance-Drama stopped growing.

I know these facts because I worked in the same Ministry for a considerable time. Since I raised my voice of dissent, my CR was spoiled.

I took the matter to the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) which passed strictures against her.


New Delhi



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