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President of India Inaugurates Global Symposium on Farmers' Rights at ICAR Today
Agriculture Event News

President of India Inaugurates Global Symposium on Farmers’ Rights at ICAR Today

In a grand ceremony held at the ICAR Convention Centre, National Agricultural Science Centre in New Delhi, President Droupadi Murmu of India inaugurated the inaugural ‘Global Symposium on Farmers’ Rights’ (GSFR) today. During this event, the President conferred prestigious awards and launched significant initiatives, emphasizing the crucial role played by farmers in ensuring global food security.

Distinguished guests, including Union Minister of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, Narendra Singh Tomar, Minister of State Kailash Chaudhury, and Secretary Manoj Ahuja, graced the GSFR event. President Murmu presented the ‘Plant Genome Saviour Communities’ Award to six deserving recipients, the ‘Plant Genome Saviour Farmers Reward’ to sixteen farmers, and the ‘Plant Genome Saviour Farmers Recognition’ to four honorees. These awards are established under the provisions of the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights (PPVFR) Act of 2001.

President Murmu also inaugurated the newly constructed ‘Plant Authority Bhawan,’ the office of the PPVFR Authority, and an online plant variety ‘Registration Portal,’ marking significant strides in agricultural advancements. She commended the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the Secretariat of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture for choosing India to host this momentous event, emphasizing India’s rich agricultural, cultural, and ethnic diversity.

Acknowledging the dedication of farmers who have tirelessly developed and conserved landraces, wild relatives, and traditional crop varieties, President Murmu highlighted their role in laying the foundation for modern crop breeding programs and ensuring global food and nutritional security.

Union Minister Narendra Singh Tomar expressed his delight that the Indian government’s proposal for the GSFR, presented during the Ninth Session of FAO’s International Treaty, has been successfully organized. He emphasized the importance of agricultural biodiversity conservation and the deep connection between nature and culture in India’s rich agricultural heritage.

Manoj Ahuja, Secretary of the Department of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, underscored India’s pioneering role in including Farmers’ Rights in Plant Variety Registration through the PPVFR Act of 2001. Dr. T. Mohapatra, Chairperson of the PPVFR Authority, provided insight into the objectives and expectations of the GSFR.

Running from September 12 to 15, 2023, the event boasts participation from over 700 delegates representing 59 countries. These delegates include National Focal Points of the International Treaty, global farmer organizations, policymakers, scientists, research scholars, industry representatives, government officials, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, legal experts, and civil society.

The GSFR, the first of its kind, aims to facilitate the implementation of Farmers’ Rights by Contracting Parties of the Treaty. It does so through discussions on innovative approaches, effective policies, best practices, knowledge sharing, and experience sharing. Furthermore, it seeks to promote the recognition of farmers as guardians of agrobiodiversity and global food security.

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