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At the time of India's independence in 1947, India's food production for national food security was highly insufficient. Malthusian scourge in the backdrop of Bengal famine of 1943 was looming. It was at a time of critical food shortage in the 1960s, commodity-centric exploitative agriculture, miscalled as Green Revolution, was ushered in by Swaminathan-Borlaug partnership. It changed India's image then as begging bowl to bread basket! As had been foreseen and forewarned, the Green Revolution resulted in environmental degradation, enhanced social inequities and had little to do with sustainable agriculture and rural development. With the lessons learnt, Swaminathan developed a systems approach-based evergreen revolution to achieve productivity in perpetuity without accompanying environmental and social harm. It is also designed to fight both the famines of food and rural livelihoods with the help of ecotechnologies having pro-nature, pro-poor, pro-women and pro-livelihood orientation. The present article elaborates these aspects.

Shetty P.,Ms Swaminathan Research Foundation | Shetty P.,University of Southampton
Current Science | Year: 2015

The concept of food security developed over the last 50 or more years addressed primarily the need for the production and access to adequate food grains to feed the world's increasing population. Nutrition security, a later development, was a much broader concept since nutritious and safe diets alongside adequate biological and proper social environments ensures appropriate growth and development in childhood and helps promote health and prevent disease in adulthood. The need for a paradigm shift in policy formulation from focusing on food security at the aggregate level to nutrition security at the level of each child and adult implied that the definition 'food and nutrition security' integrates both the conceptual frameworks of food security and nutrition security. This integrated approach aspires not merely to address the micronutrient malnutrition which is a bigger problem than food energy deficiency, but is a foodbased approach that also tackles non-food factors such as water, sanitation and care practices.

Jayakumar K.,Sathyabama University | Malarvannan S.,Ms Swaminathan Research Foundation
International Journal of Earth Sciences and Engineering | Year: 2015

Urban land use and land covers have considerably been changed throughout worldwide and India is no exception for the same. Urban information is very limited and crucial and not updated in a systemic manner in some cases. Remote Sensing (RS) and Geographic Information System (GIS) are the state of the art tools widely used for the management of urban resources. Available spatial information is not in single end. To overcome this problem, open source based WebGIS is developed and spatial datasets were incorporated for wider dessimination of urban information to all the stakeholders for better planning and management through web. The results of the present study revealed that in Tiruvallur block most of the areas are covered by water bodies, open space, agricultural land had decreased from 18,941 ha to 14,135 ha over the period of 25 years. In contrast, built-up areas increased from 1,889 ha in 1988 to 6,696 ha in 2013. The WebGIS based study is useful to stakeholders with up-to-date spatial information on residential and non-residential areas in order to guide strategic implementation of sustainable urban land use planning and management. © 2015 CAFET-INNOVA TECHNICAL SOCIETY. All rights reserved.

Krishna V.V.,University of Gottingen | Drucker A.G.,Bioversity International | Pascual U.,University of Cambridge | Pascual U.,Basque Center for Climate Change | And 2 more authors.
Ecological Economics | Year: 2013

This paper examines the role of direct compensation payments for agrobiodiversity conservation, using minor millet landraces in India as an example. The cost of farmer participation in a hypothetical 'payments for agrobiodiversity conservation services' (PACS) scheme is estimated using a stated preference valuation approach. Significant inter-crop and inter-varietal differences are observed with respect to consumption values, upon which the compensation demanded by farm households is shown to primarily depend. Drawing on a categorisation of consumption values and farmer preferences, the paper points to the importance of simultaneously considering a range of potential interventions in order to conserve a priority portfolio of agrobiodiverse resources in predominantly subsistence-based agricultural systems. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Govindan G.,Ms Swaminathan Research Foundation | Ramalingam S.,Ms Swaminathan Research Foundation
Journal of Cellular Physiology | Year: 2016

Recent advances in the targeted genome engineering enable molecular biologists to generate sequence specific modifications with greater efficiency and higher specificity in complex eukaryotic genomes. Programmable site-specific DNA cleavage reagents and cellular DNA repair mechanisms have made this possible. These reagents have become powerful tools for delivering a site-specific genomic double-strand break (DSB) at the desired chromosomal locus, which produces sequence alterations through error-prone non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) resulting in gene inactivations/knockouts. Alternatively, the DSB can be repaired through homology-directed repair (HDR) using a donor DNA template, which leads to the introduction of desired sequence modifications at the predetermined site. Here, we summarize the role of three classes of nucleases; zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs), transcription activator like effector nucleases (TALENs), and clustered regularly interspaced palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/CRISPR associated protein 9 (Cas9) system in achieving targeted genome modifications. Further, we discuss the progress towards the applications of programmable site-specific nucleases (SSNs) in treating human diseases and other biological applications in economically important higher eukaryotic organisms such as plants and livestock. J. Cell. Physiol. 231: 2380–2392, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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