Change and Development in Rural Society

Change and Development in Rural Society

Question

There are direct linkage between the situation of agricultural workers and their lack of upward socio-economic mobility. Name some of them are as follow.

Answer

Agricultural Workers: It is a correct statement that there are direct linkage between the situation of agricultural works and their lack of upward socio-economic mobility. We can give the following facts and point in this regard.

(i) Agricultural land is the single most important resource and form of property in Indian rural society. But it is not equally distributed among people (particularly agricultural workers) living in a particular village or regions. Nor does everyone have access to land.

The ownership of land or its total area decide the position of peasant or agriculture workers upward or downward in socio-economic mobility.

(ii) Women workers are having comfortable position in India’s socio-economic setup. In most regions of our country women are usually excluding from ownership of land, because of the prevailing patrilineal kinship system and mode of inheritance. By law women are supposed to have an equal share of family property. In reality they only have limited rights and some access to land only as part of a household headed by a man.

(iii) Agricultural labourers are generally paid below the statutory minimum wage and earn very little. Their incomes are low. Their employment is insecure. Most agricultural labourers are daily-wage eamess. And do not have work for many days of the years. This is known as under employment.

Similary, tenants (Cultivators who lease their land from landowners) have lower incomes than owner-cultivators. Because they have to pay a substantial rent to the landowner-often as much as 50 to 75 per cent of the income from the crop.

(iv) Agrarian society, therefore, can be understood in terms of its class structure. But we must also remember it is also structured through the caste system. In rural areas, there is a complex relationship between caste and class. This relationship is not always straightforward. We might expect that the higher castes have more land and higher incomes. And that there is a correspondence between caste and class and higher incomes. And that there is a correspondence between caste and class as one moves down the hierarchy.

In many areas this is broadly true but not exactly. For instance, in most areas the highest caste, the Brahmins, are not major landowners, and so they fall outside the agrarian structure although they are a part of rural society.

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