Last 2 days to comment on DBT’s GMO guidelines

The Department of Biotechnology had sought the comments/ suggestions from stakeholders pertaining to the two guidelines: ‘Environmental release of GEM: Regulatory requirements for risk assessment and approval in India, 2018” and “Guidelines and Protocols for analysis of effects of GE plants on soil microorganisms, 2018

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New Delhi: The Department of Biotechnology has mandated Review Committee on Genetic Manipulation (RCGM) to bring out biosafety manuals/guidelines specifying the biosafety procedures pertaining to the handling of hazardous microorganisms, genetically engineered organisms, cells and products thereof. The same is with respect to the ‘Rules 1989 of Environment (Protection) Act 1986’ that regulates the applications of modern biotechnology.

In exercise of the power, RCGM has prepared two new guidelines at par with international best standards with information from scientific literature, relevant regulations and guidelines and through a series of consultation with researchers, experts, academicians, concerned ministries/departments and other stakeholders.

In order to get a wider feedback on these guidelines, the DBT had sought comments and suggestions from the institutions and researchers besides all other stakeholders by 25th May 2018 through email to [email protected] There are only two days left for submission of comments in the required format that can be found on DBT’s website.

Guidelines titled “Environmental release of Genetically Engineered Microorganisms (GEM): Regulatory requirements for risk assessment and approval in India, 2018” has elaborated regulatory requirements for risk assessment of genetically engineered microorganisms (GEM) and/or its derived product under research, manufacture, import, or processed for environmental release purposes that includes applications like biopesticide, bioremediation, biomass conversion, crop quality improvement, waste treatment, biomining, mineral leaching, oil recovery, desulfurization of fossil fuels, biofertilizers and biosensors.

“Guidelines and Protocols for analysis of effects of GE plants on soil microorganisms 2018” has elaborated the methodologies and data requirement for assessing the effects of GE plants on soil microorganisms. It shall be applicable for part fulfilment of biosafety assessment studies of GE plant as mandated in Rules 1989.