Here's the latest on the public interest petition to India's Supreme Court calling for a moratorium on the release of GMOs into the Indian environment and for the neeed for proper biosafety testing.

As those bringing the case, like Aruna Rodrigues, have noted, "independent scientists have been threatened, gagged or fired; regulatory authorities round the world have been compromised. In India, as the media knows, Monsanto has doctored reports on Bt cotton. It is a story of skulduggery, dodgy science and shaky ethics. It is all there in the evidence before the Supreme Court."


SC notice to Centre on contentious GM seeds clearance in India
The Hindu, July 13 2005

New Delhi, July. 13 (PTI): Entertaining a PIL seeking ban on the release of genetically-modified organism/seeds having the potential of causing major health hazards, the Supreme Court today issued notices to the Union Ministries of Agriculture, Science and Technology and Environment and Forests.

A Bench comprising Justice Y K Sabharwal and Justice G P Mathur, issued the notices on the PIL filed by Aruna Rodrigues after hearing arguments from counsel Prashant Bhushan, who alleged that the policy of the Government was to give speedy clearance to genetically-modified organism (GOM) even before putting in place a mechanism to test their bio-safety value.

The petitioners also sought a stay on the import of huge quantities of edible oil by India from Argentina stating that 80 per cent of the arable land in that country was under cultivation of GMO crops.

Referring to the new policy of the Government regarding GMO clearances, Bhushan cited the experience of genetically-modified BT Cotton seeds being allowed for commercial production and the extensive debate it had generated about the absence of safety measures as well as the long term implications on human health.

He said the GMO seeds were pest-resistant high producing variety with the inherent drawback of passing on strands of pesticide to human body that could in future blow up as major multiple health problems.

However, the Bench said two views could be possible on the utility value of the GMO and a debate is on about it.