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Before we blame forest-dwellers for ‘poaching’ during the pandemic, we must recognise our own hypocrisy -Meera Anna Oommen and Kartik Shanker

-The Hindu Forest communities are being seen as the primary drivers of denudation during lockdown, while we continue to ignore the impacts of fast-tracked Environmental clearances for dams and mines A photograph of a young man, presumably tribal, or a returning migrant, or both, with the carcasses of two hares slung over his shoulder, was recently emblazoned on the cover of a report by a reputed wildlife NGO. The report — based...

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Halt Char Dham project, Environmentalists petition Modi -Jacob Koshy

-The Hindu Some members furthering an agenda that isn’t in public interest, they say. A group of 40 scientists, Environmentalists and ecologists have written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding a halt to the Chardham road construction work and that the recommendation of Environmentalist Ravi Chopra, who heads a Supreme Court-appointed committee to advise on the sustainable execution of the project, be heeded. The Chardham Project (CP) is an ambitious attempt by the...

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Experts slam move for approving new Bt brinjal variety, cite regulatory lapses -Meenakshi Sushma

-Down to Earth The Event 142 variety of genetically modified brinjal was quietly given approval without any data in the public domain, claim experts Experts have slammed a recent move of the Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) — a government-appointed committee responsible for appraisal of proposals of genetically engineered organisms — giving its greenlight for biosafety research-level-II (BRL-II) field trials for Event 142, a new variety of genetically modified brinjal (Bt brinjal)...

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Academic Freedom In India: A Status Report, 2020 -Nandini Sundar and Gowhar Fazili

-The India Forum Nandini Sundar teaches at Delhi University. Gowhar Fazili teaches at Ambedkar University Delhi. Academic freedom is about the right to study, teach and research a diversity of viewpoints. Yet, this right that is so crucial for the pursuit of knowledge has seen widespread attacks in colleges and universities across India. The New Education Policy (NEP) 2020 claims it is based on principles that include creativity and critical thinking, constitutional values,...

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‘No-GM’ certificate mandatory for imported food crops from January -Meenakshi Verma Ambwani and TV Jayan

-The Hindu Business Line FSSAI issues order on 24 items even as it works on regulations for GM foods Come January 1, 2021, importers of 24 major food crops will have to mandatorily declare that the products are not genetically-modified and that they also have a non-GM origin. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has come out with this order to ensure that only non-GM food crops come into the...

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