I feel myself fortunate for having heard Sri Devinder Sharma speaking impromptu in Bangalore two years back about the plight of farmers in India. He spoke for nearly an hour and a half in English but the audience, many of whom were not so well-versed in English, remained glued to their seats and maintained a pin-drop silence.
Since then I started reading him. The moderators and members of the JK Forum should feel honoured that Sri Sharma is writing in this forum. The point he raised in this article is very serious in nature and the government of India should understand the spreading tentacles of the MNCs in the universities. I always felt that the agriculture universities never proved helpful to the farmers but the MNCs did. However their help came with many conditions and sanctions.
I wonder when people say there are number of research works happening in the agriculture universities but is the research work reflecting in the fields anywhere in any part of India? The answer is a big no. Instead of universities, the solutions to the farmers' problems are offered by the MNCs. How the MNCs, sitting seven seas away know the agriculture related difficulties faced by the farmers in India is something very intriguing. Apparently there is a big nexus between the agriculture universities, government agriculture departments, research scholars, MNCs and the governments of the developed nations.
Some eight years back attempts were made to sell hundreds of varieties of rice collected by Dr Richharia in the Indira Gandhi Agriculture University (IGAU), Raipur many decades ago. Hail the IGAU authorities who mixed all the seeds and now no one knows, which rice variety is known as what. As this was not enough, a conspiracy was hatched to sell the entire rice bank to an MNC. Timely action by the rights activists saved the bank from going into the hands of the MNC.
The university was again in the news for the bad reason around three years back when the germplasm of a rich Jatropha variant was 'smuggled' out. The scientist, who was doing research work, suddenly quit the job and joined an MNC, which was also doing 'research' on Jatropha.
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