A high-powered panel of chief ministers has sought states’ views on whether GM (genetically modified) crops could be used to boost productivity in agriculture, the panel's head said Friday.
“As regards to use of GM technology in agriculture there are divergent views in the country today and now we have sought the states' opinion on the topic after which experts will be consulted and then a final decision taken on the same," said Devendra Fadnavis, chief minister of Maharashtra, and chairman of the high-powered panel on transforming agriculture.
The panel was constituted by PM Narendra Modi after the first meeting of NITI Aayog Governing Council after assuming office for the second term. Fadnavis said discussions were held today with the participants of the committee as to whether GM technology could be used to boost productivity of some crops like oilseeds for which limited field trials could be permitted.
However, the broad consensus was that views from states should be sought before any opinion is formed on the subject. Chief Ministers of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana are some of the other members of the high powered panel. India does now allow use of GM crops for food purposes and so far has permitted its use only in cotton.
However, there has been consistent pressure from some quarters to permit the use of GM technology in food crops as well.