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Scientists and political leaders in Tamil Nadu are strongly opposing the proposed merger of three central institutes of Indian Council for Agriculture Research (ICAR).
T. Ramasami, former secretary of Department of Science and Technology, headed an expert committee and had recommended that the Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture (CIBA) in Chennai be merged with the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) in Kochi, and Sugarcane Breeding Institute (SBI) in Coimbatore be made a sub-centre of the Indian Institute of Sugarcane Research in Lucknow.
Likewise, suggestion was also made that the National Research Centre for Banana (NRCB) in Tiruchi be merged with the Indian Institute of Horticultural Research (IIHR) in Bengaluru.
MDMK general secretary Vaiko was the first to condemn the plan to merge these research institutes. DMK working president M.K. Stalin has stated that the merger proposals were unjustified and would deprive Tamil Nadu of institutes of national and international repute in Chennai, Coimbatore and Tiruchi.
He has urged the Minister to intervene and prevent any effort to merge the institutes with institutes in other States.