Daily Editorial Update with Vocabulary – Govt silence on Genetically Modified crops inexplicable

Hello and welcome to exampundit. Here is today’s editorial with vocabulary from The Hans India newspaper.

silence on Genetically Modified crops inexplicable

The implications and repercussions of introducing
genetically engineered seeds or crops is akin
to an anecdote attributed to noted
British playwright George Bernard Shaw. An acclaimed actress had once proposed
to Shaw and told him that if they got married the couple would have a child with
his brains and her beauty.
Shaw reputed for his repartees replied that it would be
alright if the progeny had these
traits but what if the child inherited “my beauty and your brains.” It may not
be an appropriate parallel or a narrative that could be associated with the
impact of genetically modified crops (GMOs) but Shaw’s poser in essence does
provoke questions about the outcome of induced marriage of incompatibles.
To be more precise, genetic
engineering of crops or seeds involves injecting DNA from an unrelated source
into the gene of the crop targeted to with the objective of creating high
yielding and pest-resistant and herbicide tolerant characteristics. Seems like
an ideal solution to protect the crops and increase their production.
So why has it triggered so much furore and protests among the experts
and agriculture community in India and across the world? GM or transgenic crops
are reported to have hazardous ramifications.
According to experts, pollen from GM crops poses the threat of contamination of
non-GM crops. This in turn would result in inevitable and extensive damage to
non-GM crops.
Moreover, the herbicide
resistance trait imbued in the crop
can result in excessive use of herbicides and consequent cascading
pollution. The harmful effects are not confined to crops alone. Experts point
out that the pest-resistance gene in the GM food can infiltrate human beings
and cause various diseases because of its unrelated and incompatible origins.
Like the “beauty and brains”
denouement there is every possibility of different gene permutations and
expected outcome going haywire. Economically, the claims about high
productivity of GM crop also are disputable. On the contrary, there is not much
of a difference in the yield capacity between GM and non-GM crops.
Moreover, the introduction of GM
crops in India would mean enslaving the farmers to monopolies and thus imperilling the agrarian economy of the
country. So despite the negatives far outweighing the positives, why was the
Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) in a tearing hurry to approve GM
mustard? And this is not the first time that it has shown alacrity in endorsing
GM crops.
The committee has on innumerable
occasions indicated a favourable propensity
towards GM crops without scientifically investigating into their demerits and
consequences. It all points to the GEAC working at cross-purposes with the very
objectives for which it has been established.
More inexplicable and intriguing is the silence of the
Central government whenever the issue of introduction of GM crops into the
country comes up. Except for a few denials here and there, punctuated with
absolute silence, the government is yet to reflect the gumption to say a very convincing ‘no’ GM crops and come out with a
clear and strong policy against its infiltration into India in any form.

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Important Vocabulary from the Editorial
An unintended consequence of an event or action,
especially an unwelcome one
Having some of the same qualities
A short amusing or interesting story about a real
incident or person
Quick and usually funny answers and remarks in
The young or offspring of a person, animal, or
An outbreak of public anger or excitement
A complex or unwelcome consequence of an action
or event
Inspire or permeate with (a feeling or quality)
Happening as a result of something
Pass (something) on to a succession of others.
To put something or someone at risk or in danger
of being harmed or destroyed
The fact that someone is likely to behave in a
particular way, especially a bad way
Very interesting because of being unusual or
The ability to decide what is the best thing to
do in a particular situation, and to do it with energy and determination:

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