Bt Brinjal on the boil
ESG's campaign against Bt Brinjal, the country's first-ever genetically modified food, started in 2006. It claimed that the Bt Brinjal posed a major threat to peoples health as it is a 'lab-cultured' food', developed 'instransparently' after being 'poorly tested'.
On October 11, 2013, the Karnataka High Court dismissed all the petitions challenging criminal complaints against Monsanto. It is alleged that endemic varieties of Brinjal were accessed by UAS (University of Agricultural Sciences), Monsanto and Mahyco. After which, Monsanto's proprietary Bt Gene were inserted in the local varieties of Brinjal to create the Genetically Modified Bt Brinjal.
ESG claims that the developers of Bt Brinjal has not taken permission from the State Biodiversity Board and the National Biodiversity Authority, during the making of Bt Brinjal.