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Thread: Rural under-development- An analysis

  1. #1

    Rural under-development- An analysis

    Historically, India’s countryside has been a neglected lot. In pre-independence era alien rulers of British India, in connivance with their sovereign counterparts i.e. rulers of princely states, used to usurp major chunk of hard-earned income of hapless farmers, accrued from their agriculture produce, in the name of ‘lagaan’ (rent). The revenue so generated was spent, towards palatial luxuries, maintenance of armaments and beautification of the capitals, leaving the villages to fend for themselves. The intractable issue of rural development met the same fate at the hands of sovereign rulers post-independence. The plight of rural poor continues unabated. Majority of villages in India, including Haryana, UP, MP or Rajasthan which are focus of our attention on this forum, still remain without basic civic amenities viz. road, rail/bus service, education, health services, telephone, playgrounds, not to speak of cyber café , pub or discotheque which are still considered as ingredients of alien culture.


    Now the question is, even after 62 years of independence, why the pace of development is so slow and lop-sided? Why the developmental activities are centered round the big/metropolitan cities only? In my perception the underdevelopment and backwardness of villages is due to a cumulative effect to the following factors:

    (a) Dynastic politics: Politics has been monopolized by a handful of families, be it Haryana, UP or Rajasthan. By hook or by crook these families are able to capture power alternatively- thanks to the coterie of sycophants and vote- brokers around them. Once in power, these leaders exert their energies in accumulating money for themselves and their relatives gliding over Chandigarh, Lucknow, Jaipur or Delhi roads in their Hummers or SUVs giving a damn to their voters and their demands for developmental agenda.

    (b) Indifferent attitude of educated youth towards politics and development of their area:

    Majority of modern educated youth who migrate to cities or abroad stay away from politics considering it a dirty game which is a wrong perception overlooking the fact that politics is an inalienable part of our life and their indifference comes handy to the type of politicians mentioned above at (a). In the absence of any pressure group consisting of educated people from the constituency, the MLAs/MPs tend to be lax and conveniently ignore the demands for developmental schemes in their respective constituencies.

    (c) Lack of political awareness among the villagers: Due to inadequate knowledge, they fail to pursue their agenda with administration in an effective manner and  fail to pressurise  the concerned officials responsible for implementation of the projected schemes.

    (d) Malpractices in election: Money and muscle power plays a great role in election thereby making it easy for the corrupt, dishonest candidates with criminal records to make it to the Assembly/Parliament. Such people will have no concern for development of the area.


    (e) Gotra Factor in election : Sometimes we are driven by Gotra factor while voting which results in selection of a weak and inefficient candidate who would not be able to deliver inspite of his good intentions – due to his inefficiency.

    -------------

    PS: Comments from viewers are welcome

  2. #2

    Rural Development and Urbanization... the difference.

    singh sahab namaskar... i can see JATland fever is catching on you... ahahaha.

    good topic up for discussion. your point of contention, rather call it a sort of blame, has predominantly focusing the apathy caused by politicians. well, that is a factor, no doubt. but, for that matter i will hold central govt more responsible.

    the crux of the matter in my opinion lies in the phenomena called ‘rural-urban migration’. this phenomena of rural-urban migration gains impetus when there becomes acute shortage of employment opportunities in rural sector. let me try to explain further…

    some will say that the terms rural development and urbanization as synonymous. i don’t agree to this assumption in entirety, because the basic difference between the rural and the urban economies is that of their dependence and not of the amenities or facilities of life available for the people living there. now since you are talking of u.p., haryana, rajasthan and m.p. in specific, hence my focus goes to agriculture. that being said, a rural economy substantially depends on land and agriculture. on the other hand, an urban economy substantially depends on any one or a combination of industry, trade and commerce. if we want to develop a rural economy we should develop land and agriculture. the land and agriculture development would increase income of the rural people whereby they would tend to raise their living standard by letting urban amenities, facilities and traditions enter in their life.

    1. now we come to the same off-beat concern of laxity by government in pushing those real agriculture incentives, despite of the fact that india still remains an agriculture based economy. i am not saying, that the performance of the govt is below standard, but we still have to achieve a lot to see that no farmer dies of xyz reasons. this really holds true, that agriculture in india, never remained a priority for any govt since independence.

    2. second point that comes into picture, as stated above is the rural-urban migration. how many entrepreneurs have stayed back and have pushed the cause of agriculture from their confines and resources. you’ll hardly find a handful of them. though, off-late the trends are changing, where few entrepreneurs have made substantial gains in the field of agriculture. you’ll find few exemplary examples of achievements from few nri’s retuned in punjab state.

    coming back… whatever the high level of living standard that is achieved in the rural setup on the basis of increased income generated on account of land and agriculture development, the economy remains rural. all the same... it becomes developed but is not converted into an urban economy.

    let me try to explain what exactly is 'rural development'... in my opinion.

    take the example of rural villages in u.s.a. [or say for example australia or even south-africa for that matter] they look far better than indian cities and/or towns… but those are still the part of u.s. rural sector because the economy of those villages is still land and agriculture based. this course of strengthening of a rural economy is called ‘rural development’ in real essence. if the urban way of living is made available to the rural mass without raising their income through land and agriculture, their consumption, traditions and living become urban. this is urbanization and not rural development.

    urbanization is enjoyed by rural people till it is free of cost for them. as soon as it starts costing to them, either they revert to their pre-urbanization living standard or, if they have become habitual, they indulge in illegal activities to earn more income to maintain the enjoyed living standard. that is why the urban youths in India are day by day advancing towards crime. therefore, urbanization can pay nothing positive to rural mass in real sense. nor, urbanization means rural development. each of the rural development, the rural extension, the urbanization, the urban development, the urban extension and the rural urban transformation has its separate meaning.

    ... my two cents !!! hope to receive some more meaningful input from other worthy members.
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  4. #3
    Hi Braham,


    Thanks for your valuable comments.

    Inarguably, Central government is largely responsible for building macro level infrastructure for country’s pre-dominantly agrarian economy. Nevertheless, states cannot absolve themselves of the responsibility of creating congenial atmosphere for the agricultural sector to grow as a profitable and organized industry rather than being an unavoidable traditional obligation. Like in several developed countries (Britain, France, Belgium and Germany to name a few), State government should initiate steps to introduce enhanced subsidies, crop insurance, improved warehouse facilities, better road/rail siding facilities for ferrying the produce to markets, subsidized and soft loans for establishment of food processing plants, guarantee for procurement of produce by government at remunerative prices etc., for a sustainable growth of agriculture sector. Apart from the above, it is also a State subject to provide facilities for a civilized subsistence of villages viz. schools, hospitals, playgrounds, streetlights, parks, community centre, gyms etc. which are available in villages in countries like USA, Australia and even South Africa as mentioned by you. If extension of these facilities amounts to urbanization, then be it. There is no harm.

    Due to poor and appalling living conditions, lack of employment and pressure on land holdings in countryside, cities are getting a heavy influx of rural migrants taking its own toll. In spite of a heavy dose of funds for development, town planning in some of the mega cities has gone haywire with slums of ‘Dharavi magnitude’ mushrooming, defacing the beauty of these cities. It is therefore a serious issue to maintain a precarious balance between rural and urban development for their harmonious growth.

    ----

    Note: Above perception is subject to free, fair and objective criticism
    Last edited by singhvp; March 6th, 2010 at 07:34 PM. Reason: Minor error

  5. #4
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    Responses inline.

    Quote Originally Posted by vpsingh59 View Post
    Historically, India’s countryside has been a neglected lot. In pre-independence era alien rulers of British India, in connivance with their sovereign counterparts i.e. rulers of princely states, used to usurp major chunk of hard-earned income of hapless farmers, accrued from their agriculture produce, in the name of ‘lagaan’ (rent). The revenue so generated was spent, towards palatial luxuries, maintenance of armaments and beautification of the capitals, leaving the villages to fend for themselves. The intractable issue of rural development met the same fate at the hands of sovereign rulers post-independence. The plight of rural poor continues unabated. Majority of villages in India, including Haryana, UP, MP or Rajasthan which are focus of our attention on this forum, still remain without basic civic amenities viz. road, rail/bus service, education, health services, telephone, playgrounds, not to speak of cyber café , pub or discotheque which are still considered as ingredients of alien culture.

    Cite any source which you deem trustworthy to establish a bit of this particular claim, if it is objective in nature ; but if an opinion, nothing can be done except disagreeing respectfuly. Do you mean that 60 years of self rule to a nation, who has a long history of slavery, is a touchstone to achieve everything a first world country's third grade county side have? Show us the example of any country who with such a devastating past has establisted itself as a developed in less than a centuary? It takes more than 3 generation atleast to qualify for the real improvement.
    Now the question is, even after 62 years of independence, why the pace of development is so slow and lop-sided? Why the developmental activities are centered round the big/metropolitan cities only? In my perception the underdevelopment and backwardness of villages is due to a cumulative effect to the following factors:

    (a) Dynastic politics: Politics has been monopolized by a handful of families, be it Haryana, UP or Rajasthan. By hook or by crook these families are able to capture power alternatively- thanks to the coterie of sycophants and vote- brokers around them. Once in power, these leaders exert their energies in accumulating money for themselves and their relatives gliding over Chandigarh, Lucknow, Jaipur or Delhi roads in their Hummers or SUVs giving a damn to their voters and their demands for developmental agenda.



    Lack of self esteem in educated and uneducated blokes is the pinnacle of cause of every malice we are having. Politicians have got power but who has given? Aliens?

    (b) Indifferent attitude of educated youth towards politics and development of their area:

    Majority of modern educated youth who migrate to cities or abroad stay away from politics considering it a dirty game which is a wrong perception overlooking the fact that politics is an inalienable part of our life and their indifference comes handy to the type of politicians mentioned above at (a). In the absence of any pressure group consisting of educated people from the constituency, the MLAs/MPs tend to be lax and conveniently ignore the demands for developmental schemes in their respective constituencies.

    That has made a bit of sense finally.

    (c) Lack of political awareness among the villagers: Due to inadequate knowledge, they fail to pursue their agenda with administration in an effective manner and  fail to pressurise  the concerned officials responsible for implementation of the projected schemes.

    Taking them as a fool voting machine would only harm the anyone's own predictions.They teach better lessons to officials as well as politicians than their urban cousins.

    (d) Malpractices in election: Money and muscle power plays a great role in election thereby making it easy for the corrupt, dishonest candidates with criminal records to make it to the Assembly/Parliament. Such people will have no concern for development of the area.

    You know what, politics is for strong people , it is an irony that good people aren't strong but but the bad ones have the audacity and that essence of daring to go beyond rules to pursue the power. Again it is the psychosocial submission to a strong master.Don't blame it on those who do it, rather who give it.

    (e) Gotra Factor in election : Sometimes we are driven by Gotra factor while voting which results in selection of a weak and inefficient candidate who would not be able to deliver inspite of his good intentions – due to his inefficiency.

    I didn't get this point at all. Obama was voted heavily by blacks.


    -------------

    PS: Comments from viewers are welcome
    Sometimes compartmentlised thinking serves the purpose also. Sometimes!
    "All I am trying to do is bridge the gap between Jats and Rest of World"

    As I shall imagine, so shall I become.

  6. #5
    A Very Nice Topic After long time

    Rural development kar di to kayee nuksan ho jange
    1) Is desh ko worldbank se mil rahi rakam milni band ho jayegi
    2)Gaon dehat ke padh likh jayenge aur fer sarkar ke lath denge.
    3) Jo vote Garibi hatao abhiyan ke naam pe mil rahi hain wo band ho jayengi
    4) jo grant kagjo mein to development ke naam par hain par jinhe matri ji chara ghotalo ya aise ghotalo mein dakar jate hain wo milna band ho jayega.
    5) Kalabazari par bhi kaafi hadh tak rok lag jayegi aur Lala log bhukhe mar jayenge.

    ek udharan ke taur par lete hain ek naami company ko
    Mother Dairy
    is company ka ek bhi dairy plant nahi hai.aur ye apna doodh VITA se kharidti hai with packing aur market mein bechti hai. Is company ne ek bahut badi rakam world bank se utha rakhi hai rural development ke naam par.Aur ye koi private company nahi sarkari company hai jiska naam sunke log iska doodh lete hain jabki VITA naam logo ko pasand nahi aata.
    Ye sirf ek akeli company nahi aisi hajaro company hain joki rural development ke naam par sarkar se karja aur subsidy ka fayda utha rahi hain.
    Jo cosmetics ki company herbal naam istemal kar rahi hain wo bhi sab isi tarike se logo ko bewkoof bana rahi hain.
    Iska ilaj kya ho?
    iska siraf ek ilaj mujhe samajh aata hai par use karne ki himmat nahi ho pati.
    Gandhi mujhe pasand nahi par uska Satyagrah hi sab bimariyo ka ilaj hai.
    Gaon ke log ekjut ho gaon mein hi sabji fal aur anaj paida karein apas mein ek doosre saman ke badle len den karein. Bahar ki cheezo ka bahiskar karein apni jaroorto ko seemet kar dein. Agar poora gramin bharat ye kaam siraf 6 mahine ke liye kar deta hai to sab kuch ho jayega. Par....................
    Dream is not what you see while sleeping. Dream is that which won't let you sleep

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  8. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by samarkadian
    Responses inline.

    Cite any source which you deem trustworthy to establish a bit of this particular claim, if it is objective in nature ; but if an opinion, nothing can be done except disagreeing respectfuly. Do you mean that 60 years of self rule to a nation, who has a long history of slavery, is a touchstone to achieve everything a first world country's third grade county side have? Show us the example of any country who with such a devastating past has establisted itself as a developed in less than a centuary? It takes more than 3 generation atleast to qualify for the real improvement.
    ...
    Lack of self esteem in educated and uneducated blokes is the pinnacle of cause of every malice we are having. Politicians have got power but who has given? Aliens?
    ...
    That has made a bit of sense finally.
    ...
    Taking them as a fool voting machine would only harm the anyone's own predictions.They teach better lessons to officials as well as politicians than their urban cousins.
    ...
    You know what, politics is for strong people , it is an irony that good people aren't strong but but the bad ones have the audacity and that essence of daring to go beyond rules to pursue the power. Again it is the psychosocial submission to a strong master.Don't blame it on those who do it, rather who give it.
    ...
    I didn't get this point at all. Obama was voted heavily by blacks.

    Sometimes compartmentlised thinking serves the purpose also. Sometimes!
    samar, could you please elaborate a bit further... esp. this compartmentalized thinking?

    honestly speaking... i don't understand whether you are questioning, answering, suggesting or criticizing?
    ! ... be BOLD in what you stand for !
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  9. #7
    [QUOTE=Samarkadian;241356]Responses inline.

    Mr. Kadian,


    Even though I could not make out much of your reaction, I submit my explanation with all humility, as under:
    For sure, I have neither cited from Time, Newsweek or Popular Science nor from National Geographic/Discovery channels or any other mass media. This is firsthand narrative by a son of the soil who has not only witnessed the harshness and inadequacies of village life but have experienced too. Therefore, I feel an urge of romancing the idea of radical transformation of villages to make these places worthy of living for human beings.

    60 years is a very long time. However, there can be no “touchstone” or benchmark for measuring development which is an evolving and relative concept. The pace of development in countryside during these 60/62 years has definitely been abysmally low and sluggish resulting in disparity in terms of availability of civic facilities in villages vis-à-vis cities. Whilst villages are clamoring for bare necessities due to paucity of funds, the fiscal overdose to cities led to their emergence as nerve centers of business activities, political maneuverings, land mafia, black-marketers, money launderers, self-centred white-color officials lethargic intellectuals, and last but not the least phoenix like emergence of slums harbouring petty ciminals. (Lop-sided development ke side-effects). This criminal disparity need to be addressed urgently.

    You wanted an example of a country with a history of 60 years of slavery which was able to catapult itself into a developed country. Yes I have an example. Malaysia, which got independence in 1957, has done much better than us as far as overall development is concerned. We are seeking their cooperation in building highways and basic infrastructure including mono-rail in Mumbai.

    Due of severity of our political relations many eye-brows are bound to rise, but, China may be quoted as another example.


    As far as other points are concerned you need to refine and elaborate your comments .


    You are, however, entitled to disagree and I respect your freedom of expression.





    Last edited by singhvp; March 8th, 2010 at 09:47 PM. Reason: spelling mistake

  10. #8
    VP singhji,

    There is no denying the fact that development of rural India leaves much to be desired. Though some good developments did take place post independence like land reforms and the green revolution, but the cumulative effort has been much less than what was required. Having said that, I consider your diagnosis of the problem in "urban vs rural" terms as flawed. Rural India is not under-developed because the emphasis has been on urban India. It is underdeveloped because there are far too many people subsiding on land than is possible.

    I'd instead argue that the problem with rural India is because of the failure to develop urban Indian properly. Can we name one planned city that the govt. has come up with since independence? The likes of Gurgaon are extensions of existing cities. I am talking about stand alone cities built from the scratch. Through out the history of mankind, development has taken place around cities. All civilizations built cities which became the nerve centers for economic action for them. A village in itself just doesn't have the numbers for making any big project economically feasible. Just imagine a big hospital or a big mall or a university opened in a village. Where would the demand be to justify the investment? These things have to come up in the nearest town/city, which need to be well connected to the villages through roads, telephones, etc.

    Population of India is 1.2bn, of which more than 70% live in rural India. Majority of these are involved in agriculture. This is more than 3 times since independence. So number of people living off the land has tripled, while the amount of land has remained almost the same. This is just not sustainable. When a peon earns more than a farmer, it just tells you that there are far too many farmers than is economically feasible. People understand that and hence you see mass scale migration to the cities.

    On the other hand, the developed countries developed themselves on back of rapid industrialisation. As per wiki, in 1870, 70-80% of US population was employed in agriculture. Now that percentage is like 2 to 3%. Farmlands have become much bigger thus giving economy of scale to the farmer. Even in 1950, one US farmer supported around 15 citizens. By 2000, that number was close to 150. Compare this to India where one farmer is supporting less than 1.5 citizens including himself in 2010. This link has good information on development of agriculture in the US. We don't have to follow US example, but if you look at any developed country, the results would be similar.
    http://www.csrees.usda.gov/qlinks/extension.html

    The other issue is that the Indian state had been so busy making everything from soaps to steel that it didn't really have resources to concentrate on what should have been its priority- public goods like health, education, infrastructure. Plus it didn't have the money. Given the high growth of last decade and a half, the money issue has been sorted. The tax revenue to the govt. has increased a lot. The onus is now on the govt. to stop wasting money on wasteful subsidies and use it to build the infrastructure.

    The issue is not with people migrating to the cities. That is a natural outcome of the inequilibrium between rural/urban economies. The govt. needs to plan for this migration. They need to build new cities that can absorb the rural population and provide them with means of livelihood apart from agriculture. The extension of the current cities should be planned and not haphazard like it is now. And most importantly, what is needed is to develop the skill-set of rural communities so that they have options other than agriculture. Uneducated rural migrants end up in the usual unskilled/semi-skilled jobs in cities. Instead, they should be imparted with skills that can be used in the manufacturing/service sector.

    The topic itself is very broad in its scope. My write-up merely touches upon some key points.

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  12. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by brahmtewatia View Post
    samar, could you please elaborate a bit further... esp. this compartmentalized thinking?

    honestly speaking... i don't understand whether you are questioning, answering, suggesting or criticizing?
    Sir Brahm,

    Compartmentalised thinking refers to ,''The inablity to think cross board, a tendancy to to look at each matter in the isolation of other matter OR To compartmentalise an idea means that you have learned a specific skillset but only are able to understand and apply it in the original context in which it was taught.''

    Here author have thought and presented his observation in a non-compartmentalised way, linking three to four adjacent states in the same manner. They may be resembling in some aspects but to me it did appear some over generalisation without any trusted source. My inline responses from the alcove of my little brain are simply comments in non-cynical manner without quiblling the matter of importance.

    As Kapil has pointed out that US growth,development,industerilisation is that land only specific. Territory like India which is governed by the vast and huge rule of diversity, you can't pick up the developmental model from any already developed place and ingenerately believe in them. In upshot, I meant the picture presented is not that desperate as the author of original post described, I just stated the other bright of coin which I see around daily. For example, he stated about Telephones, road connectivity, education schools. We all know that nowadays even a labour keep the updated gadjet and drivers of local threewheelers[Tethan, Bhund], jeeps ; which are alternate transport means to reach villages, uses PEN DRIVE instead of Cassettes. Without sneering the author's intent I wanted to say that situation is not that desperate. In Haryana particularly, education has become a prolific sector in rural areas, ruralite blokes are much more concerned about their kid's education more than any time in history. In the outskirts of any village there are scores of private educational institutions. School education in the rural part of Haryana is the latest Zeigtgeist. This has resulted in over 200 engineering institutions across Haryana. Boys and girls from village are knocking the door of prominent education institutions like IITs. I believe the same for the other states mentioned but I would not claim. It is the matter of another thread that WHAT should be taught and HOW it should be. Next author mentioned about playgrounds, I don't know what really provoked him to mention this. Anually, there are scores of criket, athletics [ Buddho ki race esp],football and Wrestling, Kabbadi tournaments. If by chance author is aware about village Fairs and turnout of folks participating in big playgrounds he surely is going to reevaluate his opinions. Valients from village Akhadas are doing much better in sports. Almost every home in village has invertor, electrical madhani, fridge. Gone are the time when I used to sit in the lap of my mother while she used to blow milk in bilowani. Water, village wells are just left for frogs to enjoy their escapading honeymoon. Villagers hardly look up to government water supply. They have created their own system where they have digged the pipeline from tubewell to each home at the expanse of 50 rupees per month.

    Don't prop your analysis on the plausible deniablity of evident facts. Only problem rural folks face is the proper guidance.

    Author shall know that voting turnout is maximum in villages than city and urban parts. Under the rural heading he stated the attitude of youth of city which didn't make any sense. Villagers are damn shrewd when it comes to voting and Gotra factor hardly counts as he stated.

    Again in next he just writes instinctively the example of Malaysia getting its independnce in 1957. What is Malaysia? Yes What is Malaysia? Does it have gargantum diversity of language, castes, religion , beliefs, cluture, subculture and geography? Kindly do not infer from the development of a rose plant to the development of a banyan tree. It is non-compartmentlized, sounds good but does it work.? Again he cites the example of China. A lot has been hyped about the Chinese bubble, a lot around the world. But lets just have a glimpse at the facts like nature of their governing. Political philosophies are poles apart when it comes to development, progress. They started the first SEZ in late 1970s across its vast coastal line. We tried to mimic it in NDA govt. where is it now? Probably not even in the territory of half and wouldn't be. Grown, developments and progress is very much compartmentlised, Otherwise Microsoft, Apple and Sun won't be having the different USPs. You can't cure asthma by treating cough symptoms. Every system has its own quirks which needed to be stated in its own manner. Perils of copying and pasting other's growth are huge both culturaly as well as economically. Yes, what we can copy, imitate is the intangible attributes of inspiration, enthusiasm and determination from them.

    Having said that , I sit in my balcony early in the morning and watches the new bride in neighbourhood finishing her chores faster to catch the school bus where she teaches and you know what she is happy walking the street proudly in ghunghat with her purse swinging. I sign off to my routines as the school kids clamourly wave bye to their grand parents.
    "All I am trying to do is bridge the gap between Jats and Rest of World"

    As I shall imagine, so shall I become.

  13. #10
    You forgot to add Cable Connections and Dish T.V's in villages . Now you won't see bunch Taus sitting in GHER listning B.B.C. News anymore.Almost Every home has got one vehicle( Two, three or four wheeler).Everyone has Colour T.V. Washing Machines are also part of 50% homes. Now lesser and lesser people prefer toilet in open.During recession these so called backward villagers came forward for rescue of several MNC's


    they lack only in one thing that is getting right prices for their produce.

    http://www.domain-b.com/brand_dossie...l_markets.html

    LG, Hero Honda, Nicholas Piramal to focus on rural markets news17 January 2009



    Spread across 650,000 villages, with an average population of 1,100 rural villagers were long regarded by city dwellers as backward and impoverished and irrelevant, something to drive past on the way to something else.
    That is no longer the case. Rural India is now becoming a major market for India Inc. Don't forget India lives in its villages. That's because roughly three-fourths of the country's population resides in the rural interiors of the country.
    Consider the fact rural India has 3.3 million active internet users, a new report by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) states. The research - part of the ongoing I-Cube 2008 being jointly undertaken by IMRB International and IAMAI - also notes there are 5.5 million people who claim to have used internet at some point. Since rural India was mapped for the first time, the year-on-year growth of internet users in rural India could not be estimated.
    "The penetration of internet in rural India is directly related to the activities of the government and NGOs," says Subho Ray, IAMAI president. "Given the various government and private sector efforts to connect rural Indians, this was the right time to take the survey to rural India and find out the state of affairs there."

    India's 700 million villagers now account for a massive $100 billion a year consumer spending in the country. Millions step into consumerism each year, graduating from the economics of necessity to the economics of gratification, buying themselves motorcycles, televisions, mobile handsets and four-wheelers.
    The National Council of Applied Economic Research, or NCAER, has pared its demand forecasts for automobiles, refrigerators and television (TV) sets for this fiscal year and the next, signaling that a slowdown in demand for these products, which make up a quarter of India's manufacturing output, may drag on longer than foreseen by industry executives.
    NCAER is, however, bullish on untapped potential in rural areas and believes demand in the countryside will continue to clock double-digit growth.
    Korean consumer elctronics firms LG Electronics India and Samsung, two-wheeler maker Hero Honda, pharma products maker Nicholas Pirmaml, mobile services provider Bharti Airtel are among a handful of well-established companies making a concerted push into rural India in recent months to boost flagging sales. They are joining some notable segment leaders like Bajaj Electricals and Bajaj Auto that have had a strong presebnce in rural areas.
    Now, the largest consumer electronics company in India by sales, LG, plans to focus heavily on rural markets through channel expansion, set up a services network and roll out a slew of entry-level products.
    LG Electronics defines all cities and towns other than the seven metros cities as rural and semi-urban market. To tap these unexplored country markets, LG has set up 45 area offices and 59 rural/remote area offices.
    Earlier Airtel and Samsung tied up with IFFCO to sell their mobiles and services. IFFCO is the world's largest farmers co-operative of fertilizers (See: Bharti Airtel sets up joint venture with IFFCO to provide rural mobile phone services). IFFCO has about 37,000 member units spanning all-over India. Some of the other telecom giants and DTH service providers are looking at dying PCOs as a channel of distribution.
    Hero Honda wants to change the rural market dynamics which is hovering around 10 per cent (of households owing a two-wheelers).
    Its strategies include selling during festive seasons, tying up with new dealers, providing finance with local co-operative institutions. Meanwhile, Bajaj is launching a Bike, specifically to suit rural Indian youth needs. It is setting up 20 outlets in affluent, but severely under penetrated, rural districts. Moreover, it has created specialist dealerships for rural markets, called 'Rural Dealerships'.
    Nicholas Piramal has focused on general practitioners, to cater to rural markets to increase its penetration with a field-force of 800 people. Most of the pharma companies are looking at post-office as their distribution platform. Some of these companies conduct health-care workshops in the rural areas by tapping the local doctors.
    The challenges
    Mohan Krishnan, senior vice-president BIRD, a specialised unit of IMRB International says, "The rural market holds tremendous potential for any media. However, for the internet to flourish in rural India, the applications need to be in vernacular languages, preferably with Text to Speech capabilities. It would be better if visual symbols, graphics and rich media applications are used. The key question is, whether we have the right infrastructure to support these applications."
    The first challenge is to ensure availability of the product or service. India's 650,000 villages are spread over 3.2 million sq km; 700 million Indians may live in rural areas, finding them is not easy.
    However, given the poor state of roads, it is an even greater challenge to regularly reach products to the far-flung villages. Any serious marketer must strive to reach at least 13,113 villages with a population of more than 5,000. Marketers must trade off the distribution cost with incremental market penetration.
    For marketers, the challenge is to ensure affordability of the product or service. With low disposable incomes, products need to be affordable to the rural consumer, most of whom are on daily wages.
    Some companies have addressed the affordability problem by introducing small unit packs. LG plans to roll out several new models in low-end segments like direct cool refrigerators, twin-tub washing machines, solo microwave and CRT TVs in the first half of 2009. This is in sharp contrast to LG's erstwhile strategy to focus on premium products in the Indian market for the past couple of years.
    http://www.livemint.com/2009/07/2923...-on-susta.html
    Hero Honda net up 83% on sustained rural growth
    New Delhi: The country’s largest two-wheeler company, Hero Honda Motors Ltd, reported record profits in the June quarter as lower commodity prices, excise tax savings from its Haridwar factory and gains due to sales of higher priced variants helped it surpass its past performance.

    In high demand: A file photo of a Hero Honda sales camp at the Khirni village panchayat office in Rajasthan. Four out of every 10 motorcycles and scooters the firm sells are to customers in rural areas. Harikrishna Katragadda / Mint


    Net profit for the quarter stood at Rs500.11 crore, a growth of 83% over the corresponding quarter in 2008-09 while sales rose 34% to Rs3,822.44 crore. A Mint poll of analysts on 15 July had forecast a profit of Rs383.5 crore.
    At the core of the company’s strong performance is a continued emphasis on the rural hinterland: Four of every 10 motorcycles and scooters Hero Honda sells are sold in rural areas.
    Even as competitors try to emulate Hero Honda’s rural strategy, however, there’s a likelihood of rural demand for bikes being hit by a poor monsoon.
    “We need to wait for another 15-20 days to assess what demand (on account of possible poor monsoon) would be like,” said Ravi Sud, chief financial officer of the company.
    Also Read Hero Honda gains from lower costs, tax sops
    That, though, will happen with a lag effect of a couple of quarters, according to Mahantesh Sabarad of Centrum Broking Pvt. Ltd.
    Until then, Hero Honda will continue to reap the benefits of a decision it took in 2007 to establish a rural vertical.
    Since then it has steadily expanded rural dealerships or “touchpoints” as the company defines them.
    This year, the company hopes to take the number of touchpoints to 3,500, up from 2,000 two years ago. “We have a rigorous expansion plan in place,” Pawan Munjal, Hero Honda’s chief executive said in a statement.
    Dream is not what you see while sleeping. Dream is that which won't let you sleep

  14. #11




    Last year, as growth in urban markets slowed, Hero Honda continued to post healthy sales numbers as rural buyers were less affected by a slowing economy. Last fiscal its sales stayed flat even as Bajaj Auto Ltd and TVS Motor Co. Ltd reported identical declines of 19% each.
    Another reason for the sales growth: the company’s lack of dependence on financing as rural buyers generally prefer to pay cash.
    In the last year, as banks and non-banking finance companies pulled back from financing bike purchases, Hero Honda had been largely unaffected. At present, only about 25% of Hero Honda’s bikes have been financed compared to upwards of 30-35% for rivals Bajaj and TVS, according to analyst estimates.
    Analysts, however, anticipate that sales could begin to slow in the coming months as the effect of rural schemes such as the farm loan waiver and the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act are beginning to wear off.
    Competitors are stepping up their rural marketing activities, according to Sabarad of Centrum Broking. “The company will have to work harder for rural customers in future.”
    Below normal monsoons also have the potential to dent rural demand.
    So far India’s monsoons have been 19% below the 50 year average. This has led to delayed sowing of the kharif (summer) crop across several parts of the country and a contraction in the farm area under foodgrain cultivation, a first in five years.
    Dream is not what you see while sleeping. Dream is that which won't let you sleep

  15. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Samarkadian View Post
    Sir Brahm,

    We all know that nowadays even a labour keep the updated gadjet and drivers of local threewheelers[Tethan, Bhund], jeeps ; which are alternate transport means to reach villages, uses PEN DRIVE instead of Cassettes. Without sneering the author's intent I wanted to say that situation is not that desperate. In Haryana particularly, education has become a prolific sector in rural areas, ruralite blokes are much more concerned about their kid's education more than any time in history. In the outskirts of any village there are scores of private educational institutions. School education in the rural part of Haryana is the latest Zeigtgeist. This has resulted in over 200 engineering institutions across Haryana. .
    Thank you for devoting your valuable time and energy in offering your vehement criticism. I get an impression that your criticism is just for the sake of criticism and purely for academic purpose. Even though your message is highly messy and unclear, I try to give a reply as under:


    If a "Tethan" a electrical madhani, a small fridge received in "dowry" or a flash drive are to be the only parameters of progress, then I think we need to come out of the "slumber of satisfied insouciance". You are talking about flash drive, in my village 99% high school students have not even heard of this device, not to speak of its usage. They know only camel drive. I narrate the picture of my village with some facts which prompt me to be desperate and radical in my approach:

    1. So far there is no landline telephone (If no landline, internet is virtually impossible. If no internet, no need of computers and I think for flash drive a computer is necessary). So in my
    village IT is not a buzzword, only desert drive/safari on a camel cart on sand dunes is a popular drive there.


    2. Electricity supply is on alternate days that too for 8-9 hours during day time - Few people have invertors which last only 3-5 hours.

    3. No drinking water supply - Only a few households have been able to have submersibles pumps in the recent past. The water from such wells is contains harmful chemicals ( As per a water testing report from Haryana Agricultural University, Hissar in respect of our own bore-well with submersible pipe)
    4. No Primary Health Centre. Only some quakes can be seen roaming around with infected multi-user syringes and outdated crocin (may be nowadays panadol) which is considered panacea.

    5. Virtually no public transport System - only one bus in the morning to the nearest city and the same returns in the evening. People have to walk down 5 km to get a bus for district headquarters or a Tehsil or some nearby shopping centre for shopping.

    6. Not a single play ground or "Akhara" in your parlance. Wrestling is not the only passion for everyone. There are other sports also which need proper playgrounds like hockey, football, tennis, table tennis, basketball etc. which are important for the youth. (Only wrestling will make Jai Kishan a dull boy).

    7. There is however, a high school with skeletal staff in the name of faculty (some of the important posts remaining perennially vacant) - inspite of a long queue of trained and unemployed teachers in Haryana. Most of the teachers are from nearby villages who have to attend to more important works like feeding and milking of buffaloes etc. and marking there presence to village chaupal for attending to important gossib related to local politics and "Partibazi" or "Khap Panchayat" matters. Dream for IIT & IIM or MIT is a distant reality as hardly a few have heard about these premier institutes.


    8. There is, however, one private school - but I doubt the academic level and teaching skills of the teachers as some of them are either third class Matriculates/High Secondary pass or college drop outs. Another important point: Credentials of some of these teachers are suspect having dubious distinction of drinking habits and other un-ethical activities like having evil eye on female students or even indulging in incestuous behavior.
    9. Major portion of agricultural land is still arid without water. Tube-wells are the only source of irrigation which are not economically viable in view of heavy and frequent power-cut and high cost of energy. I give a small example of development. A small stretch of canal which was the life-line of hundreds of families had a breach 3 years ago which has not been repaired so far. As a result the canal is lying dry for the last 3 years inspite of so many audiences with local politicians.

    Mine is not the only village facing such problems. It is just a tiny example. This is a general problem in majority of villages in northern part of India and also some other states which were are not being discussed under the assumption that this site is Jat centric and I did not think it worthwhile to expand the horizon of discussion beyond Jat Belt. It is not that I am not averse or wary of discussing the plight of other parts of rural India. There is a very wide rural belt in Rajasthan with even worse conditions. In UP the conditions may be slightly better but not upto the mark. Over all situation is desperate in the villages and it cannot be explained away by citing the size of population or other statistical illustrations or manipulations. It would be ironical if people from rural background do not acknowledge this fact and would like to contradict this start reality simply for academic reasons or in pursuit of being called as "fast developing" or "fast growing" nation. May be you are content with whatever conditions you have around your village (if you are Resident Indian). But that does not change the reality and the general perception. Let us have some more views and then will conclude. As of now I do maintain my position stated earlier.

    As far the rich, thoughtful and indepth analysis presented by Shri Kapil Dalal is concerned, I am going to reply separately as it will requires more time, energy and logic to counter this intellectual giant.
    Last edited by singhvp; March 9th, 2010 at 03:11 PM. Reason: Typing error

  16. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by kapil.dalal View Post
    VP singhji,

    There is no denying the fact that development of rural India leaves much to be desired. Though some good developments did take place post independence like land reforms and the green revolution, but the cumulative effort has been much less than what was required. Having said that, I consider your diagnosis of the problem in "urban vs rural" terms as flawed. Rural India is not under-developed because the emphasis has been on urban India. It is underdeveloped because there are far too many people subsiding on land than is possible.



    The topic itself is very broad in its scope. My write-up merely touches upon some key points.
    Dear Dalal Sahab,

    Thanks you for your comments which are, as usual, based on scientific reasoning and an unprejudiced analysis. This is just to acknowledge the fact that I have gone through your post and have found it very rich in letter and spirit. I will offer my reaction in due course.

  17. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by vpsingh59 View Post
    Thank you for devoting your valuable time and energy in offering your vehement criticism. I get an impression that your criticism is just for the sake of criticism and purely for academic purpose. Even though your message is highly messy and unclear, I try to give a reply as under:


    If a "Tethan" a electrical madhani, a small fridge received in "dowry" or a flash drive are to be the only parameters of progress, then I think we need to come out of the "slumber of satisfied insouciance". You are talking about flash drive, in my village 99% high school students have not even heard of this device, not to speak of its usage. They know only camel drive. I narrate the picture of my village with some facts which prompt me to be desperate and radical in my approach:

    1. So far there is no landline telephone (If no landline, internet is virtually impossible. If no internet, no need of computers and I think for flash drive a computer is necessary). So in my
    village IT is not a buzzword, only desert drive/safari on a camel cart on sand dunes is a popular drive there.


    2. Electricity supply is on alternate days that too for 8-9 hours during day time - Few people have invertors which last only 3-5 hours.

    3. No drinking water supply - Only a few households have been able to have submersibles pumps in the recent past. The water from such wells is contains harmful chemicals ( As per a water testing report from Haryana Agricultural University, Hissar in respect of our own bore-well with submersible pipe)
    4. No Primary Health Centre. Only some quakes can be seen roaming around with infected multi-user syringes and outdated crocin (may be nowadays panadol) which is considered panacea.

    5. Virtually no public transport System - only one bus in the morning to the nearest city and the same returns in the evening. People have to walk down 5 km to get a bus for district headquarters or a Tehsil or some nearby shopping centre for shopping.

    6. Not a single play ground or "Akhara" in your parlance. Wrestling is not the only passion for everyone. There are other sports also which need proper playgrounds like hockey, football, tennis, table tennis, basketball etc. which are important for the youth. (Only wrestling will make Jai Kishan a dull boy).

    7. There is however, a high school with skeletal staff in the name of faculty (some of the important posts remaining perennially vacant) - inspite of a long queue of trained and unemployed teachers in Haryana. Most of the teachers are from nearby villages who have to attend to more important works like feeding and milking of buffaloes etc. and marking there presence to village chaupal for attending to important gossib related to local politics and "Partibazi" or "Khap Panchayat" matters. Dream for IIT & IIM or MIT is a distant reality as hardly a few have heard about these premier institutes.


    8. There is, however, one private school - but I doubt the academic level and teaching skills of the teachers as some of them are either third class Matriculates/High Secondary pass or college drop outs. Another important point: Credentials of some of these teachers are suspect having dubious distinction of drinking habits and other un-ethical activities like having evil eye on female students or even indulging in incestuous behavior.
    9. Major portion of agricultural land is still arid without water. Tube-wells are the only source of irrigation which are not economically viable in view of heavy and frequent power-cut and high cost of energy. I give a small example of development. A small stretch of canal which was the life-line of hundreds of families had a breach 3 years ago which has not been repaired so far. As a result the canal is lying dry for the last 3 years inspite of so many audiences with local politicians.

    Mine is not the only village facing such problems. It is just a tiny example. This is a general problem in majority of villages in northern part of India and also some other states which were are not being discussed under the assumption that this site is Jat centric and I did not think it worthwhile to expand the horizon of discussion beyond Jat Belt. It is not that I am not averse or wary of discussing the plight of other parts of rural India. There is a very wide rural belt in Rajasthan with even worse conditions. In UP the conditions may be slightly better but not upto the mark. Over all situation is desperate in the villages and it cannot be explained away by citing the size of population or other statistical illustrations or manipulations. It would be ironical if people from rural background do not acknowledge this fact and would like to contradict this start reality simply for academic reasons or in pursuit of being called as "fast developing" or "fast growing" nation. May be you are content with whatever conditions you have around your village (if you are Resident Indian). But that does not change the reality and the general perception. Let us have some more views and then will conclude. As of now I do maintain my position stated earlier.

    As far the rich, thoughtful and indepth analysis presented by Shri Kapil Dalal is concerned, I am going to reply separately as it will requires more time, energy and logic to counter this intellectual giant.
    Me Lord Singh,

    I do not know what impression you have imprinted on your awaken grey cells. Your use of word ''fridge in dowry'' is not only immature but derisive too. Without dowry , what do you think people do not know about common gadjets.That is a common truism. I can't help overblown cynicism expressed neither would try a whit. Had I talked of statistics proving my statements, then you could have rightly labelled the above mentioned facts as torrid academic criticism. But I symphatise with your village conditions if that is the actual scene. That needs serious intra-venous injection of generation 5 antibiotics. But your belief of portraying the whole north India equvivalent to your village or worst and desperate is not only illogical but also lacking on the grounds of rational discussion. Associated emotions to do some good are great but that 'some good' do not need a pile of ''everything is worst'' as its precursor. With this I am forswearing this discussion at its present state.

    Thanks for your time.
    "All I am trying to do is bridge the gap between Jats and Rest of World"

    As I shall imagine, so shall I become.

  18. #15
    Well, I am not a suitable person to talk on rural development.
    I live in a metro with a busy life (khamkha ki busy life without any purpose). Never think of my village, though I visit my village once in 2-3 months. But it is to meets my elders, not to discuss the underdevelopment of my village.

    My village doesn’t have Concrete roads, desirable electricity, drinking water facilities, proper transport service, good educational institutes etc. etc. But I rarely think about these things. I would not go to village SARPANCH or file a RTI to get the information about the progress of proposed Rural development Programs like PMGSY, NREGA, and SGWY etc. etc. I don’t ask MLAs and MPs what they are doing with all that money and time. I don’t advise my fellow villager, I don’t teach their children. I don’t give a crap what they do, how they live. All I do is work in AC cabin, surf internet, have good time with friends & family and sleep. And next morning I read newspaper, magazine and criticize politicians, authorities for not doing what they are supposed to do. And start the next day just like the last one.

    I can argue/discuss on various aspects of development, I can gather whatever information from internet and paste it here. But what’s the benefit?

    A villager in past and an urban in present but doing nothing for villages and deteriorating the urban. I am an Indian and I am selfish.
    The word "EQUAL" has no meaning in human life

  19. #16
    thanks samar for your answer. i guess, it makes more sense than your earlier (in my opinion) a knee-jerk reaction. i guess, you have more to say after mr. VP's last reply... period.
    ! ... be BOLD in what you stand for !
    !! ... i've the simplest tastes, i'm always satisfied with the best !!
    !!! ... be yourself, everyone else is already taken !!!

  20. #17

    Is urbanization really the answer?

    the topic indeed is enormous and encompasses many cross-cutting issues, also it might require few main point/issue(s) pick-ups and then call for elaborative discussion. that being said, the hard part still, apart from figuring out the solutions, lies in the implementation as well. more specifically in the prioritizing and sequencing of the implementation. the ball then goes in the court of politicians and the buck stops here.

    when talking of urban under-development, i touched two aspects in my post 1). laxity by central (as well state) govts and ignoring the predominant agrarian indian economy. 2). rural-urban migration. i cited reference of few countries, but would agree with samar here that a country specific model cannot be equated vis-à-vis india due to its diversity and more importantly – the population.

    perhaps the issue is more about the lack of economic opportunity in villages – given good employment prospects and the availability of basic services in rural areas, i’d still venture to say that more people would opt to stay in a place where they have stake over the land and the possibility of a higher standard of living.

    agree in totality with kapil, and this holds true... that every economy has followed the path which begins with agriculture being the main source of income for the majority of the population and ends with agricultural employment being a very small fraction of the total labor force. while the general tone of development in countries across the world is centered around cities, i wonder if such a model is healthy for a place like India, where most of its population lies in rural areas. the implications of the migration shift (as stated in my 1st post) could be destructive, from family issues to shifts in labor markets to environmental impacts <<< as can be very well seen from the recent spurge of 'urban slums'. but still the answer might lie in urbanization... how that is going to be implemented will always remain a billion dollar question.

    is urbanization really the answer? should India focus more on creating these “mega-cities” (kapil, pls. note) rather than developing rural infrastructure?

    my 1st post was keeping in view the subject urban under-development… another discourse for the discussion can be – urban development… and that’s where the major part of discussion would lead to. if mr vp.singh allows, i would like to touch ‘urbanization’ as the topic to further my views on urban development.
    ! ... be BOLD in what you stand for !
    !! ... i've the simplest tastes, i'm always satisfied with the best !!
    !!! ... be yourself, everyone else is already taken !!!

  21. The Following User Says Thank You to brahmtewatia For This Useful Post:

    singhvp (January 18th, 2011)

  22. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by samar
    With this I am forswearing this discussion at its present state.
    samar, i rate your post # 9 as excellent, as seen by me for quite some time. though, this also holds true that VP has a very viable reasoning in his counter post.

    honestly, i would appreciate your further discussion rather than renouncing from the discussion at this stage. please do participate. i do not want this (turning good) discussion meet the same foreordained fate. hope you will oblige.
    Last edited by brahmtewatia; March 9th, 2010 at 07:33 PM. Reason: added more contents
    ! ... be BOLD in what you stand for !
    !! ... i've the simplest tastes, i'm always satisfied with the best !!
    !!! ... be yourself, everyone else is already taken !!!

  23. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Samarkadian View Post
    Me Lord Singh,

    I do not know what impression you have imprinted on your awaken grey cells. Your use of word ''fridge in dowry'' is not only immature but derisive too. Without dowry , what do you think people do not know about common gadjets.That is a common truism. I can't help overblown cynicism expressed neither would try a whit. Had I talked of statistics proving my statements, then you could have rightly labelled the above mentioned facts as torrid academic criticism. But I symphatise with your village conditions if that is the actual scene. That needs serious intra-venous injection of generation 5 antibiotics. But your belief of portraying the whole north India equvivalent to your village or worst and desperate is not only illogical but also lacking on the grounds of rational discussion. Associated emotions to do some good are great but that 'some good' do not need a pile of ''everything is worst'' as its precursor. With this I am forswearing this discussion at its present state.

    Thanks for your time.
    Dear Samar,

    Yes I agree with you the village needs Gen-5 or even next higher Generation Injection (if already invented). Trust me, I have tried not to exaggerate the conditions. For a first hand information, please do come to my village and be my guest whenever I am around.

  24. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by brahmtewatia View Post
    [COLOR=blue][FONT=Century Gothic]the top

    my 1st post was keeping in view the subject urban under-development… another discourse for the discussion can be – urban development… and that’s where the major part of discussion would lead to. if mr vp.singh allows, i would like to touch ‘urbanization’ as the topic to further my views on urban development.
    Hi Braham,

    Thanks for your very positive and sensible comments. I was in hibernation since my registration on this forum way back in 2006 and you were the motivating force behind my coming out of hibernation. Do you really need my permission to start a new topic captioned as "urban development" ? You are a very serious and mature member of this forum. Sharminda mat karo. Please go ahead.

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