India needs to go local with bees too -Sujana Krishnamoorthy
* Pollinators, especially bees, are a vital part of our ecosystem, responsible for the food security of not just humans but all living beings.
* The government needs to take steps for the protection of indigenous bees before it is too late.
In his address to the nation on 12 May, Prime Minister Narendra Modi pointed out the criticality of local production. While its implications for industry et al have been discussed, one area where this matters more than anything else is the beekeeping policy. The government needs to be lauded for the attention it has given to beekeeping, with the finance minister herself explaining how important this was for agriculture recently, but the current policy tilt is to encourage beekeeping for honey. Subsequent statements by ministries as a follow-up talk of a Sweet Revolution.
From the perspective of environment -sustainability, biodiversity and livelihoods in a country where 86% of farmers are small and marginal, this approach requires re-examination.
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Livemint.com, 20 May, 2020, https://www.livemint.com/opinion/online-views/india-needs-to-go-local-with-bees-too-11589985451890.html