Crop Biotech Update

India's Prime Minister Calls for Scientific Approach on GM Crops

January 9, 2013

India's Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh called for a scientific approach for dealing with contentious issues such as genetically modified food. Addressing the centenary session of 100th Science Congress on January 3,  2013, he welcomed a debate on genetically modified foods, and said faith and fear should give way to proper debate and analysis. Speaking at the Indian Science Congress, he said "Complex issues, be they genetically modified food or nuclear energy or exploration of outer space, cannot be settled by faith, emotion, and fear but by structured debate, analysis, and enlightenment."

Promoting the spread of scientific temper has also been listed as one of the goals of the new Science, Technology and Innovation Policy which Dr. Singh unveiled at the meeting. "Scientific approach and understanding of these issues are, therefore, as vital as our core scientific capabilities," the prime minister said. He added that "Indians as a society, must enhance the spread of what Jawaharlal Nehru used to describe as the scientific temper. Our younger generations must adopt a science-based value-system in order to benefit from what science can offer and to make up for lost time".

A copy of PM's Address at the 100th Indian Science Congress is available at http://pib.nic.in/newsite/erelease.aspx?relid=91317.