Category: Pesticide Management Bill

Pesticide woes – urgent need to rein in “Me-Too”

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Agriculture in its report for the year 2015-16 entitled “Impact of chemical fertilizers and pesticides on agriculture and allied sectors in the country” has expressed serious concern over un-scientific and excessive use of pesticides. It laments that associated problems have not been addressed properly by the Government of India [GOI] and State Governments. Even as the committee exhorts GOI for ‘a comprehensive action plan for ensuring environment sustainable manufacturing, import, sale and use of pesticides’, review of the Insecticides Act [IA] [1968] and setting up of Pesticides Development and Regulation Authority [PDRA], it has skirted an innocuous section 9(4) in IA which lies at the root of the mentioned problems. The Registration Committee [RC] –...
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Toxic food – sign of deeper malaise in pesticide sector

Crop protection products [CPP] or pesticides as these are commonly known – are meant to protect plants from pests and disease so that they are healthy and in turn, help farmers in garnering higher yield and better crop quality. But, imagine what would happen if pesticides themselves start posing risk to humans, animals, birds, water, air, land etc? This is precisely what has happened during the last more than a decade ago or so. In 2003, a joint parliamentary committee [JPC] had taken a serious view of  presence of pesticides in drinking water, beverages and soft drinks much in excess of global standards. The JPC had then made far reaching recommendations that included inter alia formulation of standards for individual...
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Data exclusivity for agrochemicals brooks no delay

As per reports, Modi – government is considering a proposal to grant data exclusivity (DE) for agrochemicals for a period of 5 years. This could be a precursor to grant of similar dispensation for pharmaceuticals. The development may come as a pleasant surprise to US and EU based multinationals in both these segments who – backed by their respective governments – have been pitching for this for a long time but constantly rebuffed by Indian lawmakers thus far, ostensibly on the ground that grant of DE would be TRIPs (trade related intellectual property rights) plus. So, what does the TRIPs agreement of WTO (1995) which India implemented vide an amendment to the Indian Patent Act (2005) – after leveraging the...
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India’s case at WTO may fail to sail

Even as India rejects the US contention of failing to protect IP rights, passing the TRIPS test might be tough In the recently released Special 301 report on trade and industry practices, the US Trade Representative (USTR) has stopped short of putting India on its Priority Foreign Country (PFC) list. Under Special 301, USTR tracks the intellectual property (IP) rights record of countries and lists them according to the strength of their IP environment. If, on review, it identifies substantial deterioration in any country’s IP regime, it gets downgraded to PFC status which carries with it trade and economic sanctions. India may have escaped being listed as such for now, but the Damocles sword hangs over the country as the...
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Is India’s intellectual property (IP) regime WTO compliant?

In the just released Special 301 report on trade and industry practices,the US Trade Representative (USTR) has stopped short of downgrading India to ‘Priority Foreign Country’ (PFC) list. Under Special 301, USTR tracks intellectual property (IP) rights record of countries and lists countries that could face trade sanctions and other countries whose IPR regimes are deemed to be areas of lesser concern. If on review, it identifies substantial deterioration in its IP regime, the country gets downgraded to PFC status. India may have escaped it for now, but ‘damocles sword’ hangs as USTR intends to conduct what it calls ‘out-of-cycle’ reviews to promote engagements on IPR challenges with India. Describing as unilateral probe under US law which India has not...
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