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Debate held in Mymensingh: Not in Farmers' Interest: Hybrids serves the Interest of MNCs

By voice - Posted on 19 March 2006

Voice, a research and advocacy organization organized a debate titled `Not for Farmers’ Interest, Hybrid serves the Interest of MNCs’ held in Shahid Sayed Nazrul Islam College auditorium, Mymensingh on 19 March 2006. Dr. Marufi Khan, principal of the college moderated the function while she said the importance of the necessity of organizing debate over the issue of seed and agriculture which help the students to raise their critical awareness which also contribute to their academic performance. Dr. Khan also highlights how the agriculture sector is being dependent on the multinational companies and ultimately brings sorrows for the farmers and common people. She said the biodiversity, the environment and livelihood of the farmers are being facing enormous threats due the aggressive role of the multinational companies.


Ahmed Swapan Mahmud, the executive director of Voice described the objectives of the debate mentioning the political economy of the
country and also the dominance of the companies whose motive is to reap profit only. He mentioned to face the threats and urged to
protect the farmers while the young students can do a lot for the nation. He also emphasized on the global policy framework imposed by
the regulations of WTO, World bank, International Monetary Fund to the developing nations in the name of so called globalization while the
multinational companies acted as their agents that control the national economy. Hybrid creates threats to agriculture, creates
monoculture, increase cost of agriculture, use pesticides, fertilizer and damage the biodiversity. He urged to all to resist the aggression
and dominance of the companies and save our seed and agriculture to ensure our food sovereignty. Baby Naz Karim, Shawkat Jahan and
Ashik Minhaj Setu, the lectures of the college acted as judges of the function while they highly stressed the importance of organizing such
lively debate among the students to raise their critical awareness on the issues around food sovereignty.
Shamin Ahmed Shakil, Mahmudur Hasan, Proma Israt spoke in favour of the issue while Utpal Sarkar, Shahid Md. Shahidullah Sarkar,
Ashraful Alam Ovi were in opposition of the topic. Two hundred students along with the teachers of the college attended the debate. The
debators discussed the issues around seed, food, agriculture, environment, biodiversity, role of MNCs, and policies with a very logical and
argumentative manner. Newsletter, booklet and poster on the subject matter were also distributed among all the participants. The prize
was also distributed among all the debaters.
The function was also addressed by the poet and social activist Yazdani Koraishi, poet Amjad Dolon and lecturer of the college Asif Minhaz Setu. They urged to stand against the hegemony of WTO and TNCs and urged to resist their enormous control over our agriculture.