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

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Ethics in Science

Is there a case for formulating a code of ethical conduct for scientific organisations and scientists in India?

In March 1999, Peoples Permanent Tribunal on Global Corporations and Public Harm, examined evidence that four multinational corporations (MNCs) – Monsanto, Rio Tinto Zinc, Freeport McMoRan and Union Carbide that was responsible for the Bhopal gas tragedy – has engaged repeatedly in highly unethical and unpopular, and at times even illegal acts. The judgment of the tribunal is now available and has appeared in newspapers around the world. Not only that, these unethical acts were almost always engaged in with the connivance of top-level administration, often the machinery concerned with scientific and technological administration.

In the case of Monsanto in India, it was brought out emphatically, with unassailable evidence that the administrative decisions of one of the scientific departments of the government of India and of a group of scientists favoured and patronised by this department, were largely responsible for the unethical and illegal activities of Monsanto in India.

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