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Rakesh Tikait Reminds the Global Community of Indian Farmers' Collective Strength

Rakesh Tikait attended the ninth session of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) governing body that started yesterday on behalf of the International Planning Committee for Food Sovereignty (IPC), a globally self-organized platform for small farmers and rural workers,

Binita Kumari
Farmer Leader Rakesh Tikait
Farmer Leader Rakesh Tikait

“I would like to remind everyone here today what we, and our collective strength as movements, can do if our rights are violated. We showed it here, in Delhi, not more than a year ago,” said farmer leader Rakesh Tikait, representing the International Planning Committee for Food Sovereignty (IPC) at the international conference on plant genetic resources on Monday in Delhi.

Tikait addressed the demands made on them regarding their rights to use, store, exchange, and sell their seeds, stating that neither intellectual property rights nor other international treaty obligations, such as patents on native traits, should be permitted to restrict the rights of farmers.

While speaking on behalf of the farming community he reminded the global community of Indian farmers’ collective strength, citing last year’s farmer protest on the Delhi border where the farmers fought for their rights in a year-long protest and implored them to not ignore their demands.

He attended the ninth session of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture's (ITPGRFA) governing body on behalf of the International Planning Committee for Food Sovereignty (IPC), a self-organized global platform for small farmers and rural laborers.

Warning the conclave of policymakers from all over the world, Tikait said that if regulations of the international treaty on farmers' rights are not effectively implemented, farmers will be forced to appeal to peasant communities and indigenous people all over the world to stop transferring seeds and traditional knowledge to the world's Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (OGRFA) collections.

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