A smooth and well-funded PR campaign, along with aggressive legal tactics towards farmers who resist Monsanto’s stranglehold, have bought ample success for Goliath biotech company Monsanto. Unfortunately, this trend has persistently not translated to success for farmers, workers, or consumers. Recent lawsuits and protests shine a harsh and unflattering light on Monsanto’s practices and corporate behavior, as farmers and consumers around the country reach for a slingshot and take aim.
Monsanto and India don’t have a very cozy relationship. Monsanto came in on the promise of cheaper crops, alleviating hunger, and so on and so on. India found out before long that they got totally ripped off and screwed by the agribusiness multinational giant. Thousands upon thousands upon thousands of Indian farmers have actually committed suicide in response to Monsanto’s screw-you (with a smile), give-money-to-us genetically modified (GM) crops.
The latest in this long, sad saga is that the National Biodiversity Authority of India (NBA) is suing Monsanto, Mahyco, and other collaborators who were involved in “accessing and using local brinjal varieties in developing Bt Brinjal without prior approval of the competent authorities” (aka biopiracy).