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NEW DELHI, INDIA, January 8, 2001: Hopeful of eradicating or reducing poverty, hunger and malnutrition in India by the year 2020, the 88th Indian Science Congress has approved the production of genetically modified (GM) foods. In conjunction with protecting the environment and the rich bio-diversity of India, the technology will be tested in laboratories before reaching the fields. International biotech companies are fervently working to get a free hand for GM plants in India, as Western countries, especially in Europe, severely restrict the research. The "Vitamin A" rice, for example, cannot be tested on humans in Europe and a scheme is underway to have it tested on malnourished Indian villagers.