Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Monsanto's ad in the newspapers. Some questions.

It seems to be a bit factually incorrect.
1. They say in the fine print about Bollgard making cotton resistant against pests.
For the first time anywhere in the world, biotech agriculture giant Monsanto has admitted that insects have developed resistance to its Bt cotton crop. Field monitoring in parts of Gujarat has discovered that
the Bt crop is no longer effective against the pink bollworm pest there.
The company is advocating that Indian farmers switch to its second-generation product to delay resistance further.
-The Hindu, March 06, 2010

2. They throw in percentages like a number game. Since we are all educated, they should tell us what does 87% of Bt Cotton Farmers mean in numbers. We know for a fact that a lot of Cotton Farmers have committed suicide. So, going by this ad, of the remaining few 87% are leading a better life. Right?

3. GM corn and cotton are engineered to produce their own built-in pesticide in every cell. When bugs bite the plant, the poison splits open their stomach and kills them.
The Bt-toxin produced in GM plants, however, is designed to be more toxic and cannot be washed off the plant.
Flu like symptoms are now being reported by farm workers throughout India, from handling Bt cotton.
Studies has also shown Bollworms developing resistance to Bt toxin and becoming infinitely more dangerous and uncontrollable.
Add to this the fact that cotton is not only attacked by Bollworms, but about 160 other pests as well

4. And while we are at it, what about the fact that Bt Corn is a massive failure and is destroying whole crops?


5. 42.4 crore additional days of employment. The mind boggles. So let's break it down. If there were 500,000 Bt cotton farmers (unlikely), that would mean 840 additional days of employment for each one of those people. Anyone who has travelled to the cotton belt of India will tell you that if there is so much employment there, it certainly doesn't show. We are not good at Math. Someone, please help us out here.

Sunday, 28 August 2011

How to manage our environment - 4

How to manage our environment - 4. Lessons from real government policies and plans. (If they weren't true, they would be as lame as these cartoons.) Today's lesson from the wikileaks expose and the government’s BRAI plan. (Wikileaks on how US diplomats are promoting GMOs: How Indian govt is sabotaging public debate on BRAI: )

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Of foreign hand, circuses and other such.

Click on the image to enlarge

Is that a foreign hand or are you just excited to see us selling India?

There is a foreign hand behind this uprising of people. There is no doubt about it. The government has been selling the nation to companies like Vedanta – foreign, Monsanto – foreign, POSCO – foreign. In fact the whole development model that the government follows is so foreign that people are really fed up and have taken to the streets. So, yes, there is a foreign hand. The movement is to take it out of the corrupt politicians’ a$$e$.

The Liberal’s view of the uprising – It’s a circus

Oh well, some of us are upset about the show and chaos and music and drums and tamasha. Well, guess what, that’s what a revolution in India would look like. Those sadhus and charlatans and unkempt people and crazy histrionics and Gandhigiri and all that is as Indian as you or me. When the revolution comes, these are the people we will be fighting shoulder to shoulder with. Let’s accept it. The revolution we read about in our books and saw in our minds will make for a great play and a great book. Let’s write that book. We’ve had enough of trashy literature anyway. Meanwhile, the real revolution in India will be non-violent and it will be fought on Gandhi’s principles. Nothing else will work in this country. Nothing else has.

Where were these people when other struggles were happening?

In their homes. Trying to figure out where the hell will they get their next dal and roti from. Trying not to eat tomatoes and cut down on onions. You think that is not a struggle? And these are the people who are out on the streets. How is their struggle to live a life any less than a Niyamgiri or a Dantewada?

Anna Hazare

In the last 65 years, this is the first time, and probably the second time in our history as India that one man has brought the entire nation together to fight against the disease that is eating the country alive. If you don’t see greatness in that, check your eyes and hearts for their expiry date.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Independence Day, India.

Photograph: Deepak Dogra

Overcome by an overwhelmingly celebratory mood this independence day, we looked for ONE defining image of our country today. One image that would accurately describe the governance and the governed. One image that would define our development model. One image that is so 2011, that 2011 stops it its tracks and asks, where the hell did you get this mirror. We found the image! Happy independence day.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Bollworms and Ladders

Go ahead, take a print out of the game and play. And if you think it is a one sided game, then raise your voice against it. Don't let people die in this game agri companies are playing with millions of farmers.

Monday, 1 August 2011

A bright and rosy death of our nations' food security.

Project Sunshine, Golden Days, Rainbow, Golden Rays. Sound bright and optimistic? Brace yourself for the most important stories of this year. Which, if not paid attention to, will become the obituary of our nation's food security. (Click on the image to know more).