Another board

Published: Friday 31 March 2000

despite the government's claims of the country being a centre of megadiversity with immense traditional knowledge of its use, little has been done to nurture both. Yet another board has been set up, and major issues concerning biodiversity -- compensating local communities and conservation -- remain unaddressed.

The new National Bioresources Development Board ( nbdb ) met for the first time on in January with the objective of deciding 'the broad policy framework for effective application of biotechnological and related scientific approaches for research and development, for the sustainable utilisation of bioresources, specially for new products and processes'.

Informs Suman Sahai, coordinator of Gene Campaign, a New Delhi-based non-government organisation and a member of the nbdb , after attending the board's first meeting, "I did recommend that issues like conservation and benefit-sharing with communities be discussed within the purview of the board. There has been nothing as yet, barring a fleeting mention about conservation in the policy guidelines of the board. Ample discussion is required on these issues."

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