The government has constituted a committee to investigate into illegal cultivation of HT cotton in four states, a Union minister said today.
Replying to a question in the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Textiles Ajay Tamta said the government has received several representations for ban of illegal cultivation of Herbicide Tolerant (HT) or BG-III cotton in the country.
There are several media reports and complaints regarding the illegal or unauthorised cultivation of HT cotton in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat and Maharashtra, he informed the House.
"Department of Biotechnology in the Ministry of Science and Technology has constituted a Field Inspection and Scientific Evaluation Committee (FISEC) to investigate the matter of illegal cultivation of HT cotton," Tamta said.
The minister also said that the cultivation of BG-III or HT cotton has not been approved by Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) of the Ministry of Environment.
In a separate reply, Tamta said that the Finance Ministry has been requested for allocation of appropriate funds under Rebate for State Levies (RoSL) Scheme for one time settlement of exporters' claim and faster and complete refund of Input Tax Credit.
He said major issues raised by apparel industry include delay in Input Tax Credit (ITC) refunds, reduction in rates of RoSL, appreciation of Indian Rupee, high interest rate and lack of preferential market access as compared to competing nations.
He said the government has constituted a committee on exports under the revenue secretary for evolving a suitable strategy for promoting exports post implementation of GST.
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