Cabinet Approves Amendments to Seeds Bill

By admin • October 20th, 2010

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The Union Cabinet has approved additional amendments to the Seeds Bill, 2004 to assure the availability of quality seeds to farmers.

In a statement today, the agricultural ministry said ‘The legislation will regulate the quality of seeds and planting materials to ensure availability of quality seeds to farmers, to protect the rights of farmers, curb the sale of spurious and poor quality seeds, increase private participation in seed production, distribution, and liberalise imports of seeds and planting materials’.

The amendments also include a provision to nominate chairpersons for ‘Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers Rights Authority and National Bio-diversity Authority to the Central Seed Committee’.

The legislation also seeks to regulate the quality of seeds and planting materials, stop the sale of spurious and poor quality seeds, increase private participation in seed production and distribution, and liberalise imports of seeds. Provisions of labelling, seed health, expected performance and compensation to farmers have been included to ensure public accountability.

The provisions to the Seeds Bills will be operational after the bill becomes an act, which is likely to be taken up during the winter session of parliament starting in November.

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