Photo © Deb Kumar Chattopadhyay
I recently heard about Greenpeace India's campaign against Genetically Modified (GM) food and decided to participate. I had researched GM foods earlier as well and I knew how bad it was for our health. In fact, I thought it was a total disaster. So, I felt I should do my part to spread information and make people aware of this catastrophe that is GM food.
Recently, the BRAI (Biotechnology Regulatory Authority of India) bill was introduced in the Lok Sabha and we wanted to show everybody that BRAI is an easy single window approval mechanism for controversial GM crops. To create more awareness on BRAI and GM crops, on 5th August 2013, we went to Delhi University and started doing street plays outside the main entrance gate. Our plays focussed on showing people how GM food was bad for our health and how it was still being promoted in India.
At first, the response from the students was not very exciting but slowly they started listening to us. We took a handprint of every person who supported our cause and then we moved on to Ramjas College. Here we performed the street play inside the college and the response from the students was very encouraging. They came forward in large numbers to show support for our campaign.
By the end of the day, we did five street plays in Delhi University and gathered around 300 handprints, while taking our message to many more students. We also invited all the students for the protest against the BRAI bill on August 8th at Jantar Mantar. GM food and the danger it poses to humanity is a serious issue and we need support from a large number of people to stop it. I hope we do get more people to join us and we are able to stop the BRAI bill once and for all.
Sankalp Bhardwaj is a volunteer with Greenpeace India.