Category Archives: short article on agriculture

#VVIPS: IF YOU COULD ONLY SPARE DAINTY FLOWERS- IN YOUR THANKLESS BOUQUETS

Copyright@shravancharitymission

 

b1b3

 

 

 

    ‘Earth laughs in flowers’ – Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Each flower is the heart throb of the garden where it is grows, and so also the emblem of ‘earth’s laughter’—as Emerson puts it.

    But it is sad to see on TV these days. How people in droves, mindlessly present flower bouquets to VVIPs and Heads of States who mechanically pass it on to their personal security staff, standing next to them. And you get a disgusting feeling seeing these lovely flowers being insulted.

    Perhaps, callous VVIPS do not have the time and mind to visualise and feel about the labour pains ‘Mother Earth’ undertakes to deliver each flower. And the blood and sweat of the gardener in bringing about this exquisite beauty.

    Therefore, won’t it be wonderful to leave them in the garden alone, than to give them premature death in thankless bouquets. So I would plead to our PM Sri Narendra Modi to stop this culture of bouquets.

   And, for tokenism one could think of plastic or paper flowers. That too under—‘make in India’ scheme.

*

Posted by Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

*****

 

 

 

 

THE EXCELLENCE OF #INDIAN #AGRICULTURE

Copyright@shravancharitymission

New Doc 19_1 

    India has never been the cat’s whiskers in the world forum. Today, if one was asked to speak high about India on a world platform. Many would talk about its cultural diversity, growing economy, burgeoning and young talented population, IT, cricket team etc. etc.

    But no one would talk about Indian Agriculture. As its contribution to Indian GDP has dipped to a mere 14%. Even when 60% of the Indian population still depends on it.

    But there is another way of looking at Indian Agriculture, where it is the cat’s whisker in the world stage:

    “Indian farmers without the latest of agri technology, are able to feed over a billion people in the Indian sub-continent. And, if you get them the latest of agri technology they could even feed the world.”

    So let’s not fool the farmers. In fact we should give them the right place in the society. For, we can live without political parties and even survive with poor infrastructure. But we can’t survive without food.

    The enclosed article ‘Death of the Kisan’ by Saraika Ghose is well meant in this direction.

*

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(Archived in 7 prestigious libraries of the US, including, Harvard University and Library of Congress. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in Libraries and archives of Canada and Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai)  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2014)

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. Book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

*****

 

ARTICLE: LIVELIHOOD SECURITY IN RURAL INDIA – CHALLENGES

Copyright@shravan charity mission


    Livelihood is the means by which a person or household makes a decent living over a period of time. ‘Livelihood Security’ has been defined differently by various institutions, entities, and scholars. In a broad sense, it implies dignity, in a secure and just society. Being able to withstand stresses of death, disease, natural disasters or even economic slumps.

    It means adequate and sustainable access to income and resources to meet basic needs. Including adequate access to food, potable water, health facilities, educational opportunities, housing and time for community participation and social integration. As said by W. Somerset Maugham, ‘There is nothing so degrading as the constant anxiety about one’s means of livelihood.’

    Swaminathan (1991) has defined sustainable livelihood security as, ‘livelihood options that are ecologically secure, economically efficient and socially equitable in order to underscore three aspects- ecology, economics and equity.’

    In simple terms, job and income are the most critical components of ‘Livelihoods.’

CHALLENGES IN FRONT OF INDIA

    With 60% of India’s population employed in the agriculture sector, that contributes only 15% to India’s currently sulking GDP, challenges of livelihood security in India are getting more and more complex each day. Farm based jobs have remained stagnant due to structural changes in the Indian economy. The share of primary sector in GDP has progressively declined from 26% to 15% between 1998 and 2013. While, the share of the rural population, which was dependent on this sector, has reduced only marginally. This means India’s development models have to be robust enough to deliver dignity of life and sustainability of livelihoods at a scale. And in a pluralistic context that cannot be compared to any other country in the world.

FRAGMENTED LAND HOLDINGS

    India is a land of small farmers. According to Agri-Census 2000-01. Out of around 120 million total land households in the country, there are an estimated 98 million small and marginal holdings. The average size of small holdings is 1.4 ha which has squared down from 2.3 ha in 1971-72. The small holding character of Indian agriculture is much more prominent today than ever before. Though from efficiency point of view, small holdings are equal or better than large holdings. Poverty for small holding farmers is much higher than other farmers as small holdings do not raise enough agricultural income, so as to lift the marginal and small farm households above poverty level.

LOW LEVEL OF FORMAL EDUCATION:

    Education and skills are important for improving farming practices, investment and productivity. The low level of farmers’ education limits public dissemination of knowledge. The NSSO Farmers’ survey shows that awareness about bio-fertilizers, minimum support prices and WTO is associated with education levels.

    The literacy rate and mean years of education for unorganized farm workers is 53.4% compared to national average literacy of 74%.

FINANCIAL INCLUSION:

    Access to finance is critical for empowerment of rural communities. Though various initiatives have been taken by the Government and civil society organizations to mobilize the poor into self help groups (SHGs) and provide micro credit, much needs to be achieved. And as per the NSSO 59th round results:

  • 4% of farmer households are financially excluded from both formal and informal sources.
  • Overall, 73% of farmer households have no access to formal sources of credit.

GLOBALIZATION CHALLENGES:

    Increasing globalization has added to the problems faced by the small holding agriculture. The policies of huge subsidies and protection policies by developed countries have negative effects on small holding farmers in developing countries.

INSUFFICIENT CAPACITY BUILDING OF BENEFICIARIES:

    Out of the estimated 70 million rural below poverty line (BPL) households, 45 million households still need to be organized into SHGs. A significant number of these households are extremely vulnerable. In the absence of aggregate institutions for the poor, such as SHG federations, the poor households could not access higher order support services for productivity enhancement, marketing linkage, risk management among others. Most of the SHGs remain crowded in low productivity and primary sector activities.

POOR ABSORPTION OF TECHNOLOGY:

    ICT can play a significant role in taking best livelihood practices to the rural poor. However, absorption of technology remains poor in the countryside primarily due to lack of basic IT infrastructure, poor penetration of the internet and lack of awareness. Though mobile penetration has been robust, rural internet penetration has been estimated at just 6.7% in December 2013. There is a huge scope for open source software technology suitable for low resource settings especially for the under privileged communities.

WOMEN’S OWNERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT OF LAND:

    There are 400 million women who constitute 33% of the total population of India as per Census of India 2011. Land, in a rural agrarian economy is the source of food security, income and credit power. On the other hand, Indian agriculture is being progressively feminized with women doing the bulk of work. While 63% of India’s rural male work force is engaged in agriculture, the figure is as high as 79% for women. Women are increasingly engaging in pre-production, production and post-production activities abandoning the taboo associated with women ploughing the fields. Average farm labour by women in rural production is 55-66% of the total labour.

    In contrast to the large proportion of farm labour contributed by women, only 9.3% of rural women actually own land. In most of the landless and semi-landless families, women and children suffer from acute poverty, malnutrition and illiteracy. 83% of women engaged in agriculture don’t own the land. Since women don’t own land, they are not recognized as ‘farmers’ in Indian agricultural policy even though they are working on it full time- thus labour on their own land.

    HUMAN RESOURCES:

There is extreme dearth of qualified professionals willing to work in livelihood programs. Though management graduates can develop competency to handle livelihood projects. They are generally wired towards running businesses rather than managing livelihood issues which are connected with heterogeneous stakeholders and participants. Therefore, a special thrust to entice skilled professionals to work in this field will be a key challenge for the Government.

    So, it still remains a big challenge for India to uplift the marginal rural poor.

*****

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 7 prestigious libraries of the US, including, Harvard University and Library of Congress. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in Libraries and archives of Canada and Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai)  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be its undying characteristic. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014)

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha

(ALL THE ABOVE TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE- INDIAN AGRI’S CHINK IN THE ARMOUR

Copyright@shravancharitymission

915

 

 

 

 

    If the 2011 agri census had its way. It would huff, puff and jostle the policy makers to have a hard look at the stressed agri scenario of India. That is entering from the back doors of gradual reduction in operating land holding size. It may sound primordial. Yet the tremors are only getting closer to the feet, slowly and steadily.

    Let’s take a close look at some of the key statistics thrown up by agriculture census of 2011. Which are rather alarming. More for those who thrive on agriculture and considering the fact that the census takes place every five years. What will emerge in the next one, could only be a heart broken anticipation coming true.

LAND HOLDING PATTERN UNDER STRESS

    The total no of operational holding has increased from 129.22 million hectares (ha) in 2005-06 to 138.35 million ha in 2010-11, showing an increase of 7.06%. This may sound good.

    The operated area has also increased to 159.59 million ha in 2010-11 from 158.32 million ha in 2005-06. A marginal increase of only 0.80%.

    But the average operational size of land holding which was 1.23 ha in 2005-06 has declined to 1.15 ha in 2010-11, at an all India level. Which is below 3 acres on a more prevalent terminology. What it might be in the census of 2015-16 could be anyone’s wild guess. All in all, this shift will only bring about economic stress. That will perforce change the farming paraphernalia of an Indian farmer. But are we ready for it is the moot question?

    From the veritable census report in the table below one finds. The small and marginal <2 ha operational area has gone up from 41.14% to 44.58%. While both semi medium, medium and large holding have come down. And the average operational size of holding in <2 ha class has gone up from 83.29% to 85.01%. Now this should at least ring bells if not alarm bells. Further the table also conveys:

REDUCTION SWING IN SIZE OF LAND HOLDINGS
CENSUS-2005-06 CENSUS- 2010-11
SMALL AND MARGINAL < 2HA
AVEARAGE OPERATED SIZE OF HOLDING 83.29% 85.01%
OPERATED AREA 41.14% 44.58%
SEMI MEDIUM AND MEDIUM 2.00 HA-10HA
AVERAGE OPERATED SIZE OF HOLDING 15.85% 14.29%
OPERATED AREA 47.05% 44.88%
LARGE HOLDING > 10.00HA    
AVERAGE OPERATED SIZE OF HOLDING 0.85% 0.70%
OPERATED AREA 11.82% 10.59%

1012

    Major farm productivity is going to come from <2 ha holdings. Therefore, the methodology of agriculture production changes from heavy and medium to mini and micro farm equipment. Which is a capital cost change for the industry. Distribution and marketing too will have to retract and align to the scattered farm production. That is helter-skelter logistics and smaller heaps to carry and deliver.

THE NEW PAGE IN FARM MECHANIZATION

    Reduction in the size of average operational land holding by 6.50% over the last five years ending 2011. Together with the trending future and historical past, has not gone on deaf years with major Farm mechanization companies. As they too, over the years, have added, scaled down variants of lower horse power (HP) tractors in their stable. That is from 60 to 45 to 35 to 25 and now to even 16 (HP). Yet the break-even points of these machines are spilling on to the kuccha village roads or the tarmac roads where they carry passengers, work in brick-kiln and get into seasonal transport jobs to make two ends meet.

    Also mere reduction of HP will not be sufficient in bringing about farmer profitability. The present average land holding size denotes–Like a nuclear family have nuclear farming. But this nuclear farming will be viable only with tilling machines in the range of 3 to 7 HP along with allied paraphernalia. Machines that even a lady can operate and that are self-sustainable, in terms of cost by the income of the farm alone. And do not escrow with other seasonal side operations to break even. Therefore, it is not far when the early birds of the industry will arrive in this segment.

    As a concerned friend of the farmers. I feel the Government of India needs to take a pragmatic view of the ensuing scenario, and work out a complete package for the new trendsetting ‘nuclear farming.’ Which I feel is a new skill set. And I say this for the following reason.

    For etching a full time farming career from a farm of less than 3 acres would mean performing most farm activities yourself. Or in the company of your spouse, and this would require small farm machines for all activities to match that. Especially, when the net farming profitability per acre stands around twenty five to thirty thousand rupees per annum per acre. That too on irrigated land.

    Indian agriculture has been slow but steady in catching signals of change. Perhaps, it is waiting for a point when push comes to shove. But this time it needs to be proactive. And it has the capability to imbibe change. Where, the GOI must facilitate with appropriate policies.

By Kamlesh Tripathi- Ex: General Manager, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd.; Head Operations, Mahindra Shubh Labh Services Ltd.; Head-Agri-Business & Head Engines for Gensets, Escorts Ltd.; Vice President, Reliance Retail; Head of Marketing & Sales, SAS Motors; (WRITER AND AUTHOR).

*

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

 *

Share if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(Archived in 7 prestigious libraries of the US, including, Harvard University and Library of Congress. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in Libraries and archives of Canada and Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai)  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2014)

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. Book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

*****