Sale of illegal HTBt cotton seeds doubles
Part of: GS Prelims and GS III – Economy; Biotechnology
- The illegal cultivation of herbicide tolerant (HT) Bt cotton has seen a huge jump this year,
- Sale of illegal seed packets has more than doubled from 30 lakh last year to 75 lakh this year.
- BT Cotton is a genetically modified crops that produces an insecticide to combat the Cotton bollworm, a common pest.
- GM crop has a gene artificially inserted from another species to provide some desired properties like pest resistance herbicide tolerance drought resistance
- However, concerns are raised over its negative impact on Environment human health and crop diversity
- Currently BT Cotton is the only GM crop allowed for commercial cultivation in India but herbicide tolerant BT Cotton has not been approved by regulators. T
- They are available in the black market along with BT brinjal and HT Soya seeds.
- HTbt Cotton variant makes the plant resistant to the Herbicide glyphosate
- Glyphosate has carcinogenic effect and can also result in spread of herbicide resistance to near by plants through pollination
DO you know?
- Regulatory Framework for approval of GM crops is covered under the Environment protection Act 1986
- Genetic engineering appraisal committee under Ministry of Environment, forest and climate change is Apex body that allows for commercial release of GM crops in India
- Cartagena protocol on biosafety provides well-defined mechanism of regulation of GM crops including biosafety evaluation and environmental release