ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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The Movement for Telangana: Myth and Reality

The movement for a separate state of Telangana refl ects a longstanding demand for autonomy in social, economic and political matters, a call that has been denied for over half a century even as the region has continued to suffer within the larger state of Andhra Pradesh. Many myths and counter-arguments are being peddled by those wanting to retain the status quo.

Understanding Powerloom Weavers' Suicides in Sircilla

An oligopolistic market, fluctuating market conditions, inadequate modernisation and the subordinate status of hired workers have contributed to the poor living conditions of workers in Sircilla, a powerloom centre of Andhra Pradesh. The state and central governments need to intervene in a more organised fashion to end the distress. In the short run, the state governments should source procurement of cloth for supply to various welfare schemes from the powerloom producers. In the medium term the central government should make it possible for the powerloom operators to access funds from the existing textile modernisation schemes.

Farmers Suicide Missing Issues

E Revathi G PARTHASARATHY and Shameem's study EPW, March 26), 'Suicides of 'Cotton Fanners in Andhra Pradesh; An Exploratory Study', is indeed an exploratory study which focused on several interrelated causes for suicide deaths like adverse rainfall, inconsistent prices, rise i n cost of cotton cuItivation, had position of co-operative credit agencies and commericial banks.growing powerof the moneylender, trader, landlord combine and growth of lease holding in cotton cultivation (p 721) However, there arc some missing issues in the analysis. The first is the non- inclusion of irrigation as a major factor lor the tragedy in the district. On the surface of the problem it may not appear as an explicit cause but it is one of the implicit causes for the soaring debts of the fanners. Ft is very much evident that in the process of creating private sources of irrigation most of the farmers have invested heavily on digging and deepening of wells. A study of 50 deceased farmers' in Warangal district shows that well is the largest source of irrigation for about three-fourths of the fanners. Only about one-third of the wells were dug under the subsidy schemes of the government. In the rest of the cases farmers them-selves have borne the expenses for digging of wells. Besides this the depletion or groundwater in the recent years has necessitated deepening of wells and laying of in-well bores, the investment for which averaged anywhere between Rs 50.000loRs1,00,000. Moreover, the periodical deepening of wells also required amounts in the range of Rs 10.000 to Rs I 5.000. In spite of these efforts only 25 percent of the wells could yield sufficient water. All this is to substantiate the increasing expenditure incurred by the farmerstowards creation of private irrigation, The same paper also probed into the purpose of burrowing by the farmers which clearly showed thai it is mostly for creation of agricultural infrastructure like sinking and deepening of wells, laying in-well bores. purchase of bullocks and other farm equipment. Fifty per cent of the cases have reported obtaining loans for improvement of wells and about 20 percent farmers incurred debts for digging wells in the last three to four years, These results could be extrapolated to the universe of deceased fanners, 104 up to March 31, I998 Table 5 (p 722) in the study shows that irrigated area under cotton in Warangal district was the highest in the mid-1980s Area under cation and percentage of area
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