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

S MohanakumarSubscribe to S Mohanakumar

Impact of the Economic Crisis on Workers in the Unorganised Sector in Rajasthan

This article analyses the impact of the 2008-09 global economic meltdown on workers in the unorganised sector of the gem polishing and construction industries in Rajasthan. Based on a primary survey, it was found that in the initial phase of the crisis, workers trimmed their spending on their social life. This was followed by a reduction in expenditure on health and education. As the crisis persisted, they were left with little alternative but to cut down expenditure even on essentials like food, shelter, clothing, etc. Further, distress caused by unemployment and a drastic reduction of incomes exacerbated domestic conflict, violence and depression, the brunt of which was experienced by women and children. The study finds that the impact of the crisis varied between gem polishing and construction industries and it was more severe for workers in the lowest income group in both industries.

Kerala's Agricultural Labourers: Victims of a Crisis

Most of the relief packages to tackle the farm crisis do not cover agricultural labourers, who largely belong to scheduled castes and scheduled tribes. This article analyses the situation of agricultural labourers in the crisis-affected districts of Kerala - Wayanad, Idukki and Palakkad. It also reviews the performance of the welfare schemes for agricultural labourers which are implemented through the Agricultural Workers Welfare Fund Board.

Analysis of Farmer Suicides in Kerala

The agrarian crisis and farmers' distress in Kerala are closely linked to the neoliberal policy regime implemented in the country in the recent past. The association between the two is more in the regions of the state that are heavily dependent on export-oriented crops such as coffee and pepper. The worst affected are the small farmers, as they are more vulnerable to crop losses and price declines. Unless the plight of farmers is addressed in terms of changing the macro-policies regulating taxes, prices and imports, the condition of the farmers cannot be improved on a sustainable basis, either by increasing the availability of institutional credit or providing some alleviatory sops to the victims of suicide families.

Investment and Employment in Rubber Smallholdings

Declining prices of primary commodities and growing market uncertainties have been important characteristics of the post-reforms phase since the second half of the 1990s. This is an analysis of the impact of the fall in prices and market uncertainty on the natural rubber smallholdings in Kerala. It explains the magnitude and economic implications of the price fall, its impact on investment, employment and labour relations in five selected areas in Kottayam and Idukki, prominent rubber-growing districts in the state.

From People's Plan to Plan sans People

The people's planning programme, launched in Kerala in 1997, heralded a new approach towards decentralised planning and the participation of people in development programmes, especially by women and backward classes. However, the UDF, which took over government last year, has diluted many of the provisions of this programme, including funding, which may prove to be a setback to the functioning of this unique plan.

Impact of Economic Reforms on Tyre Industry

This paper attempts to assess the impact of economic reforms on the automotive tyre manufacturing industry. The analysis focuses on the dominant truck and bus tyre segment. With the entry of MNCs in the post-reform period, the sector is on the verge of a major shake-up, underlining the need for nationalisation of the product mix, favouring radical tyres with large-scale investment.
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