ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Dalits Protest before UN

ON July 16 the European Union Parliament voted in favour of proposed legislation which would allow 17-20 year patents (in effect, exclusive monopoly rights) to be taken out within the EU on living material plants, animals and parts of humans. If implemented and it can still be stopped the legislation would prove a major victory for those transnational corporations which have been lobbying to impose monopoly rights over life forms through patents, and jeopardise the livelihoods of millions of people in the South. European colleagues have asked Southern partners to join with them in making every effort to ensure that the Directive does not become law. The next stage in the European legislative procedure takes place in November this year when (in a meeting of (he Council of Ministers) the government of each EU member country will decide whether to approve the legislation or not. If enough pressure can be brought to bear on the governments, the legislation could still be blocked.

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