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President Droupadi Murmu Inaugurates ‘First Global Symposium on Farmers' Rights’ in New Delhi

As the symposium unfolds over the next few days, it promises to be a significant platform for advancing the cause of farmers' rights and agricultural sustainability on a global scale.

Shivam Dwivedi
President Droupadi Murmu Inaugurates ‘First Global Symposium on Farmers' Rights’ in New Delhi (Photo Source: PIB)
President Droupadi Murmu Inaugurates ‘First Global Symposium on Farmers' Rights’ in New Delhi (Photo Source: PIB)

The President of India, Droupadi Murmu, inaugurated the first 'Global Symposium on Farmers' Rights' (GSFR) today in a grand ceremony held at the ICAR Convention Centre, National Agricultural Science Centre, New Delhi. The President conferred prestigious awards and inaugurated significant initiatives, emphasizing the vital role of farmers in global food security.

The GSFR event was graced by the presence of distinguished guests, including Union Minister of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, Narendra Singh Tomar, Minister of State Kailash Chaudhury, and Secretary Manoj Ahuja. During the ceremony, 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. President Murmu 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. She welcomed delegates to the land of "Vasudhaiv Kutumabakam," emphasizing India's rich agricultural, cultural, and ethnic diversity.

President Murmu acknowledged the dedication of farmers who have tirelessly developed and conserved landraces, wild relatives, and traditional crop varieties, which have laid the foundation for modern crop breeding programs, 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 underscored the importance of agricultural biodiversity conservation and the deep connection between nature and culture in India's rich agricultural heritage.

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

The event, scheduled from September 12 to 15, 2023, is witnessing participation from over 700 delegates representing 59 countries. These 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 through discussions on innovative approaches, effective policies, best practices, knowledge sharing, and experience sharing. It also seeks to promote the recognition of farmers as guardians of agrobiodiversity and global food security.

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