Why is the Govt hell-bent on introducing Bt Brinjal? Surely, this is not the most pressing need of the country?
As we know from the “Yes Minister’ episodes, there is more to Govt decisions than what meets the eye. More often than not, major decisions are taken based on completely mistaken premises.
In one of his articles, R.K.Narayan described a dream he had had. The Controller of Stores, a Dept of the Govt, places a large order for stationery. Unfortunately, when the letter-heads and envelopes arrive, the name of the department is found to be misspelled as “Controller of Stories”. Not wanting to admit the mistake or waste the stationery, the Govt goes ahead and creates a new department that would have the mandate of controlling or censoring stories.
A similar thing must have happened to Bt brinjal. When an application came in from a US company seeking permission to bring in GM technology, some bureaucrat must have cleared the file presuming that it was General Motors trying to introduce yet another new car into the Indian market. And, considering the weird names that they give to cars nowadays, he must have been convinced that the name of the new car model was Brinjal and that the pre-fix ‘bt’ was a stylized abbreviation of ‘battery’ or ‘butane’ or ‘’byte’ or whatever.
Once the mistake was noticed, there was no option but to put on a brave face and pass on the file to the MOEF.
That's how the poor, humble Jairam Ramesh is left holding the baby brinjal.