Tag Archives: mahindra

The change that is required.

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Watch how this B-school decided to sponsor a few students who did not have resources but the ability to turn into achievers. I won’t reveal the results. See it for yourself. This is the change required in our system:

 

Posted by Kamlesh Tripathi (received from alumni group)

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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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

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share it if you like it

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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

(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)

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VIGNETTE: CORPORATE CAUSERIE

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beginning friend remembrance

 

   

    I was once travelling with a senior colleague of mine, somewhere in Uttar Pradesh. We were on a long and arduous company tour. To launch a few of our products that had a rural flair. Having been out for about twenty days now. Homesickness was but evident on our faces. And a deeper look even revealed we were famished.

    This colleague of mine had a weird sense of humour that often hyperlinked you to a jolly laughter a little later. He was also a voracious reader, mostly of management books which he preferred to expeditiously lay his hands on. Much before the company moguls did. Largely, to orchestrate is own personality … ‘Ya-ya, I too, have read it.’

    Amid the pile-up of fatigue, and on a sweltering Sunday we were roughing it out, from one meeting to the other. Talking vivaciously about our product, is when the day finally merged into a lazy evening.

    We finally returned to the hotel. Where, we were sharing a room. On our way back we had picked up some chilled beer as hotel bar was indeed, expensive.

    The plan of action now was to have a quick shower. Even when, the tap water was boiling hot, owing to the severe heat of summers. So as to, catch the beer within drinkable temperatures. Mind you … the room did not have a fridge.

    So, as a senior he barged into the toilet first for a shower. But only to return within minutes, since the water was so very hot, is when I followed suit. Where, while rushing through a quick shower. I couldn’t help but notice, his severe hair fall that didn’t speak well of his scalp.

    After I was through, we finally decided to uncork the bottles. The beer was still drinkable. So we gulped down the first sip after a well deserved cheers, followed by a concomitant munch, is when I said,

    “Dada you’re losing a lot of hair. I just noticed in the toilet.’

    Upon hearing me, he had another draught followed by another munch— some spicy peanuts. He then looked into my eye and very seriously said.

    “Arrey baba, mein toh chahaton hun ki sab bal gir jaye aur mein General Manager ban jaun.’

    As a tube light. I flickered for a few moments before I understood what he actually meant, when we both started laughing.

    Those days the General Manager and Head of our Marketing division, was a bald gentleman.

    This causerie is only a tribute to my senior colleague Debashish Gangully who died of cancer in the US some time back. The General Manager and Head of Marketing then was Mr. V. A. Pemaiah, who  took the joke quite sportingly when we told him later. But, I really don’t where he is now.

    In this busy life of ours whenever you look back you’ll find. Over the years so much has happened, that is so very captivating and worth remembering, but unfortunately we don’t have the time for it.

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share if you like it

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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

(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)

*****

 

 

THE FEAR-CHEER-MAGIC OF SMALL #FEEDBACKS

copyright@shravancharitymission

By Kamlesh Tripathi

f3f4

    We all know the meaning of feedback. But just to refresh our minds – it is an advice, criticism or information about how good or useful something or somebody’s work is. Thus, many may consider feedback to be a frightful happening, and miss the cheer and magic behind it.

    I was once working on a rural project in Miryalguda. A small sleepy town near Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh. Since, there were no decent hotels in the town then. And the project was for a long duration. We had rented a small furnished house as our guesthouse.

    There we had a cook-cum-caretaker 24×7. We were just the three of us staying there. All from North India. Although, our cook claimed. He knew well, how to cook North Indian cuisine. But the reality was quite the other way around. We, normally used to land in Miryalguda for a fortnight at a stretch. Thereafter, we used to hit Head Office at Mumbai for a couple of days. To report the progress of the project and to be with our families. Then return again for a fortnight. This continued for quite a few months. Locally, we had planned it in such a manner. That we used to have all are meals in the guesthouse. Where, we even preferred to carry our lunch, prepared in the guesthouse only. Just in case we were going out on a farmer-field visit, locally.

f1f2

    Our cook out there, was reasonably smart, hospitable, and a sensible young fellow. Who, normally used to serve Andhra dishes for breakfast and lunch. While he used to attempt some North Indian dishes every day for dinner. Quite realising. We must be missing home food. That unfortunately used to be worse in taste. Than even the Andhra meal, he used to prepare for us. Gradually, we had two issues at hand, relating to food. One, with the continuous hot Andhra food. Some of us started getting bouts of acidity. Two, after a couple of days of landing. We genuinely used to miss home food. And so, we were desperately looking for a solution.

    One day in the evening while we all were having a cup of tea. We gave the cook some positive feedback about his culinary prowess. That charged him a wee bit. Next day. I gave him some tips on how to cook simple Dal, Chawal and Sabzi in North Indian style. Based on home recipe that i had carried.

    To my surprise next day’s dinner was a delight. Quite close to the home food. And, thereafter, it only improved, over the next few days. But what was more surprising, was the fact. That a simple pep talk had created a world of a change in the cook in less than 24 hours. This small episode changed my persona to a great extent. Where, I realised. How very important it is. To keep cheering every human being on a regular basis, and not wait for milestones. Without which they start operating like mere zombies.

    The incident changed me to a point of no return in life. Where, I would willfully compliment a cook for preparing a dish well. When, one could see the broad smile on his otherwise long face. Those days. I used to travel a lot and often by cabs. So, I made it a point to compliment drivers for safe driving. I could fathom the power of such small compliments. As they generated tremendous amount of positive energy. That is unimaginable. But could even race the progress of our country by leaps and bounds.

   I then had many field executives and managers reporting to me. I never missed an opportunity of complimenting them on the spot for having done a good well. This definitely increased their morale and performance exponentially. That reflected on their annual appraisals too.

    For let us not forget. Life is all about small building blocks. That makes the façade look grand. So, whenever you get a chance. Don’t let go the opportunity of passing. Small positive feedbacks to people around you.

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THE CLASSY ICON- #ANAND #MAHINDRA- CMD, #MAHINDRA GROUP

Copyright@shravancharitymission

By Kamlesh Tripathi

New Doc 6_1 (1)

Some personalities happen to impress you at times, but some always. He happens to be one of them. And, I would desist from venerating him; in some paltry words of mine. For words will fall short in contouring this supersonic icon of Indian business. But yes, he is inherently original, beamingly creative, and knows well how to welcome the future in all humility. A role model for many. He does complex things in simple and novel ways.

And, this time he conjoins the childhood favourite board game of Snakes and Ladders to the health regimen and shares it on Instagram for better recall value. This interesting creation of his was published in ET Panache, around the World Health Day (April 7). Wherein, he makes some simple but interesting observations in the colourful boxes of snakes and ladders,  where ladders you need to climb and snakes you need to avoid:

  • Ladder: High fibre meals (>30 gms/day), controls Blood Sugar and cholesterol.
  • Ladder: By consuming fruits and vegetables regularly, one can be at low levels of cholesterol and triglycerides.
  • Snake: Aerated drinks, fruit juices and maida items lead to high blood sugar levels.
  • Ladder: Exercise (5-6 days/week) leads to significant control of lifestyle diseases.
  • Snake: Waist size (>43” M; >38” F) is a direct market for heart attack.
  • Snake: Papad, pickle and processed food increases risk if obesity.
  • Ladder: Quit smoking, it decreases the risk of heart attack.
  • Snake: Sedentary lifestyle increases waist circumference and weight.
  • Ladder: Taking the stairs increases the fitness levels.
  • Snake: Fried snacks, farsan, bakery products increase high risk of high cholesterol.

Wishing Mr. Anand Mahindra health, wealth and fame.

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Title : Mahindra rise moment of Life

‘MAHINDRA RISE MOMENT’ OF MY LIFE

BECOMING MARKET LEADER IN TAMILNADU

    In the year 1991 I was transferred from Jaipur to Chennai as Area Manager. It was a sector shift from Automotive to Farm Equipment. A cross country movement and an exposure to a new work culture. And I vividly remember, how a colleague of mine had even jokingly remarked at that time about my transfer from automobiles to tractors–‘So Kamlesh! now your ‘speed’ reduces but ‘torque’ increases.’ Quite connoting to the characteristics of an automobile and a tractor. But there was a bigger barrier beyond speed and torque. That was the local vernacular ‘Tamil language’ that was utter Greek to me. And my palate that was not akin to the local culinary in all frankness. So, I felt, overall, it was a dim and a losing proposition for me. I landed in Chennai draped in apprehensions. Not knowing fully the local ball game. Yet I was oozing with some valid convictions and arrived procedures as a springboard.

    As a territory, I had Tamilnadu (TN), Kerala and the Andamans. To sell and service, the rugged, Red Mahindra Tractor. Therefore, I needed to rub shoulders with TAFE the local giant. I was told we had an effective network of well laid out, ebullient, dealers and officers. The HO mandate was to become Market leader in two years. More pronounced and reminded often by M&M icon Mr Alan Durante, President and Head of Marketing, AD & FES then.

    If my memory serves me right. TN market was then on an upswing and hovering around 8k-10k tractors annually, between 1992 -1996. TAFE were market leaders, followed by us. But the gap was only widening. With great expectations I had landed in Chennai. When, I decided to do three simple things that I thought would help us achieve our goals:

1.     I took a whirlwind tour of all Dealerships. Basically to establish an effective interpersonal rapport with the owners and their employees that was required as a force multiplier, and even more because I hailed from the North. Bought an English to Tamil translation book to learn and remember some key words. Required for day to day business.

2.     Took a complete inventory of Dealer infrastructure- (hardware, software, systems and processes) from all our Dealerships and branches and did a similar exercise for competitors. To understand where we stood. And, that was an eye opener.

3.     Launched a local ground level tactics “To be the best in each activity.”  Such as paid up stock, availability of spare parts, Dealer finance, Manpower training, Showroom display, Field contact, Tractor workshop record, Vehicle downtimes, Dealer branches and service points for doorstep service.

    During my first year in Chennai. We did not get significant results. To establish ourselves as market leaders. But on realising our level of activities. TAFE too pulled up their socks and started with aggressive wholesale, in districts of Chengalpet, Madurai and Tirunelvelli. I still remember the stinkers I then used to get from Mr Alan for not becoming market leaders.

    But the crafty tempest of TAFE did not deter us, and we continued with our sincere efforts in programming and monitoring the market almost on a daily basis.

    And then on a particular month in F-93, if I remember correctly. We did become Market Leaders for that particular month beating TAFE in their own home ground. For a couple of months we played down this big achievement. To let any fluke pass over. But our efforts were beginning to manifest and soon we became market leaders in all 25, 35 and 45 HP categories.

    Soon Chennai office was also adjudged runners-up, winners and runners-up in financial year’s f-93, f-94 and f-95 in Area Office performance award.

        Today I realise. That was truly a ‘Mahindra rise moment’ for me.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

shravancharitymission@gmail.com

By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share it if you like it

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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)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

Story of an Indian salesman who is lowly qualified but fights his ways through uncertainities to reach the top. A good read for all salesmen. Now available in Amazon.com

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

*****

 

Article: SMALL TRACTORS-POWER TILLERS- THE LIKELY TOTEMPOLE OF NEXT GREEN REVOLUTION OF INDIA

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341

SULKING INDIAN AGRICULTURE

Agriculture remains the mainstay of India, even when it doesn’t contribute sufficiently to the Indian GDP. Around 65% of Indian population depends directly on agriculture when it only accounts for 22% of the GDP. But Indian agriculture now needs to undergo a paradigm shift to feed double the mouths since the last green revolution. Further, farm mechanization, agri-inputs, cropping patterns and seed varieties need to be refurbished to suit new agri challenges such as continuous soil erosion, depleting ground water levels, alarming farm labour situation and sparse market linkages. And this calls for a major overhaul on the production side of agriculture. To tackle issues such as, increase in farm produce and better farm economics, which brings us to the moot point of need based farm mechanization.

ISSUES AT HAND

India which is 17% of the world population. But it still cultivates with either the draught animals, which are inefficient and expensive to maintain or by high horsepower tractors owned by large farmers, which are few in numbers. So the daunting question is, when more than 80 percent of the Indian farmers are small and marginal why they are not in a position to purchase tractors below hp (horsepower) 22. Is it because of the government policies that are blocking the smooth transition from draught animals to small tractors and power tillers? and what is more baffling is:

  • Small farmers don’t have a requirement of large tractors. With the amount of land they hold a tractor of 25 hp engine or more is not needed in small and medium farm size. Especially, when statistics for power availability for various agricultural operations, which is an indicator of mechanization has increased from 0.3 kilowatt per hectare in 1971-72 to 1.4 kilowatt per hectare in 2003-04.
  • Even though government puts in subsidies on tractors, farmers don’t get their free will to choose, as large manufacturers step-in to sell their own brands at the behest of Government. So if we are talking of free markets why this nudging?

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HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE

Tractors in India were imported initially in 1960s mainly from the US and European countries, prime being the erstwhile Soviet Union. Since these countries historically had large holdings, these machines too were manufactured in the range of medium and high horsepower to suit their own land holding sizes.

Thus, started the of lasting culture of medium and high horsepower tractors in India. Even when our land holding size way back in 1960s was far less than the European and American standards and in the range of around 3 hectares.

This as a beginning was understandable but somewhere down the line a course correction was required, which didn’t happen. Presumably, because the entire technology was new, and we were devoid of the basic sense of change or even the skill to adapt. Small was not beautiful then. A similar trend we had in the auto sector where in you had those bulky fuel guzzlers. But then the auto industry caught the imagination of their customers which farm mechanization industry didn’t.

IMPORT AND MANUFACTURING HISTORY

In the year 1961-62, first time around 880 tractors were assembled from kits purchased from British and German firms. Imports stopped in 1977 but industry’s extended honeymoon with these manufacturers continued as hand holding was required to build sufficient production bandwidth. Although, India got independence in 1947 and the socialist leaning government’s five-year plans of 1950s and 1960s aggressively promoted farm mechanizations, our production of tractors was sluggish. But by late 1980s tractor production moved upwards to 140,000 units per year, yet the prevalence rate was just 2 tractors per 1,000 farmers.

ECONOMIC REFORMS AND FAO PERSPECTIVE

Post economic reforms in 1991, with the steady pace of change, the production of tractors increased to 270,000 units per annum. And in early 2000, India overtook the US as the world’s largest producer of four-wheel tractors. FAO estimated in 1999. Of the total agricultural area in India, less than 50% was under mechanized land preparation. Thereby, indicating large opportunities still existed, and projected this in favour of small machines. Steadily growing, India in 2013 produced 619,000 tractors accounting for 29% of world’s production. And, India currently has 16 domestic and 4 multinational corporations manufacturing tractors.

SOLITARY EFFORT OF 20 HP– Swaraj story:

India had approached the erstwhile Soviet Union in the mid 1960s for R&D and manufacturing support to develop a 20 hp tractor, but they refused. This project was later taken up by Central Mechanical Engineering Research Institute (CMERI) under the council of Scientific and Industrial Research.

CMERI put together a team. They started by studying tractors of other makes that were in the market. Their first prototype was ready in May 1967 but when it was taken for trial it collapsed. Learning from the failure, they developed a second prototype, testing of which was done in October 1968, which proved satisfactory. Independent field trials later at other institutes were also successful. The tractor was called Swaraj. This Company was later promoted by Punjab State Industrial Corporation and turned out to be a blue chip company.

Besides Swaraj no other company tried to delve into 20 hp category for a long time. Until the solo effort was followed by a Delhi based company SAS Motors Ltd that has launched tractor in 15-24 hp category.

LAND HOLDING VS TRACTOR HORSEPOWER MISMATCH?

In 1960s the average land holding size was around 3 hectares (7.4 acres) and in 2010-11 it declined to 1.15ha (at an average level), which is below 3 acres on a more prevalent terminology. And, with these vital statistics, both growth and technological up gradation should have been in the low horse-power segment or in the power tiller segment. But that is clearly not the case. On the contrary both growth and technological up-gradation has been in the medium and high horsepower tractors, apparently because of foreign influence. Where, more likely the low horsepower range of tractors were discouraged because of low margins and high overheads of large manufacturing corporations and also the fatigue and capital cost of introducing a new genre.

For small and marginal farmers, low priced, small tractors of 15-24 hp was required. This generic need was highlighted as early as 1970 when (NCA )National Commission on Agriculture was set up.

At the turn of the century, India had around 2.67 million tractors, which was more than NCA projections. But category wise the number were skewed. As around 1.47 million tractors were in the 31-40 hp category, 0.65 million were in > 40 hp category and 0.68 million were in < 30 hp category. And only a part of 0.68 million tractors below 30 hp comprised of small tractors for which NCA had projected a figure of over 2 million. This large gap is surprising and reveals the callous approach of the government towards small farmers. One can perhaps safely derive that non availability made them go for higher hp tractors thereby spoiling their farm economics. And the quantity of power tillers sold was merely seventy thousand.

But then who was responsible for throwing NCA’s calculation, off balance? Well, no one can pin pointedly say who. But yes, to a certain extent the agricultural community as a whole, together with the Indian tractor industry, can be questioned on this. Instead of small tractors they came up with medium and heavy tractors, which benefited only the large farmers, and as a result tractors got concentrated only in a few states which benefitted from the green revolution such as Punjab, Haryana and parts of Uttar Pradesh (See table: some benefit)

Some benefit
Tractor sales over the last five years
States Tractors sales during last five years Area under cultivation
(‘000 hectares)
UP 290,513 17,986
MP 144,049 22,111
Punjab 121,903 4,033
Rajasthan 95,450 20,971
Haryana 89,346 3,711
Gujarat 76,439 10,293
Bihar 72,467 10,743
AP 68,994 14,461
Maharashtra 66,876 20,925
Karnataka 43,163 12,322
Tamil Nadu 38,852 7,474
Orissa 14,473 5,296
Other states 65,210 15,181
Total 1,188,735 165,507
Sources: Economic Survey 2003-04 & Indian At A Glance 2004

We all agree mechanization is an unavoidable farming tool. For, productivity has to increase along with cost and economics, and that alone is sustainable in the long run. But looking at the perfunctory approach of the government, the big question would be whether farmers should go in for small tractors or still rely of animal power. It may therefore not be out of place to mention relevant statistics of animal power.

STATISTICS ON ANIMAL POWER

– India’s 83 million draught animals carry more than 5 times the freight and four times the passenger traffic carried by railways, in terms of originating traffic.

– Draught animal power contributes 30000 megawatt of power.

– It saves 24 million tonnes of diesel per year, worth more than Rs 33,000 crore.

– Draught animals cultivate about 65% of India’s total cultivable land area

– The present value of draught animals (Rs 50,000-1,00,000/pair) is Rs 2,07,500 crore even on a very conservative estimate.

– It would take 8.3 million tractors to replace draught animal power. This would cost Rs 32,490 crore; so then why is this segment not growing?

– Draught animals provide dung worth Rs 5,000 crore annually. Five million tonnes of firewood will be needed to substitute this.

The crisis around the farmer’s traditional tiller- the draught animal is continuously growing. Even though farmers still rely on draught animals their importance is being undermined by tractors.

According to an NCA report, man can provide a power equivalent to 0.07 hp, a woman 0.05 hp, a bullock/buffalo 0.40 hp, a camel 1 hp and a tractor at least 14 hp. In 1951, the farm power available was just 0.25 kilowatt per ha (KW/ha) of which 97 percent came from draught animals. This has now gone up by almost 6 times to 1.40 KW/ha and the corresponding increase in food grain by four times, and so an optimum, farm mechanization, is the need of the hour.

Farm mechanization is also important from the aspect that 65% of our cultivable area consists of dry farming or rain fed farming where the window of soil bed preparation is very small and if we are unable to do seedbed preparation and sowing in a timely manner, given the receding soil moisture, yields will drastically reduce.

However, 70% percent farmers still use draught animals where they can easily be upgraded to small farm mechanization tools. Such as small hp tractors or power tillers, but for this to happen; government policies should start focusing on the needs of the small farmer.

COMPARISON BETWEEN DRAUGHT ANIMALS AND TRACTOR

Draught animals and tractors are complementary sources of power on Indian farms, and will continue like that for many more years, to meet the ever burgeoning demand of power and of increased production and productivity. A report of 1987 says that a 35 hp tractor can prepare a seed-bed and sow 0.2 (ha) in one hour at Rs 270-300 per ha. Bullocks for the same operation require the entire day at Rs 300 per ha. The problem is draught animals have to be fed throughout the year but their optimal use is restricted to around three months in a year.

INDIAN AGRI DISCONNECT

  • Tractors in India are out of reach for the majority of the farmers. The cheapest being Rs 1.8 lakh almost as much as a new car.
  • Barely 2% of the 115 million farmers own a tractor according to the 1995-96 agriculture, census. Yet they cultivate almost 1/3rd of the countries arable land. This itself highlights the efficient toughness of farm mechanization.
  • Most farmers possessing tractors are rich and own large land holdings. Rate of ploughing is Rs 200-250/hr or Rs 2-2500/hectare
  • But small farmers are unable to reap such benefits. For them a low priced, small tractor of 15-24 HP would be ideal. This need was recognized as early as 1970 when the National Commission on Agriculture (NCA) was set up. After a 5 year study, NCA submitted a long report in 1976, which also recommended the type and quantity of tractors India should have by 2000: 2.08 million tractors and power tillers (a farm machine, with two wheels, to till the soil) below 15HP, 0.12 million medium tractors of 35 HP & 80,000 65 HP tractors, which taken together would total 2.28 million
  • This policy argued that 2.08 million tractors and power tillers below 15 hp were needed for small and medium farmers. Besides, they are also considered more suitable for paddy cultivation — the country’s dominant food grain crop — than medium (25-40 hp) and heavy (above 40 hp) tractors.

ALL TIME PANACEA FOR SULKING INDIAN AGRICULTURE IS FARM MECHANIZATION OF THE RIGHT KIND:

  • To graduate from animal tilling to mechanized tilling and that to by small tractors, power tillers and other economical high precision equipments commensurate with land holding size of small and medium farmers, keeping in mind their farm economics.
  • An option less farmer has to buy a 35 hp category tractor that costs around 5 lacs with bank loan at a high rate of interest, even if he doesn’t require this product. This should be substituted by small tractors or even power tillers.
  • GOI provides a subsidy of 25% limited up to 30,000 tractors. Wherein also, the farmer is cajoled to buy certain brands and this needs to stop forthwith, as user of the product should alone be the decider by any diktat of consumerism.
  • Tractors available in the range of 25-40 hp use advance western technologies, which may not be required for small holdings and this makes the product expensive. In fact what is needed is a below 25 hp tractor or a power tiller that is gender friendly and useful for ‘nuclear farming’ just as a nuclear family. The cost of such tractors will bring down the farmers cost by 50%. As against his investments and maintenance in a pair of bullocks, which requires to be fed and taken care of even when it is not generating any revenue, and also serves best only for a time span of 5-6 years.
  • Farmers need to come out of the clutches of debt to make agriculture more exploring, exciting, remunerative, and even status oriented. This can happen only if simple and cheap technologies are used in conjunction and proportion to their earnings. According to 59th survey by NSSO (January-December 2003) out of 89.35 million farmer households, 43.42 million (48.6%) were reported to be in debt. But in a similar survey in 1991 only showed 26% were in debt.

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