Reckless Gamble for Profit that Placed Indian Cotton Farmers in Corporate Noose

by | December 26, 2018

The dubious performance (failure) of genetically engineered Bt cotton, officially India’s only GM crop, should serve as a warning as the push within the country to adopt GM across a wide range of food crops continues. This article provides an outline of some key reports and papers that have appeared in the last few years on Bt cotton in India.Read More »


India: Armed Peasants Struggle: Srikakulam Movement -50th anniversary

by Harsh Thakor

Frontier| December 08, 2018

50 years ago on November 25th 1968, a new epoch was carved out in the history of India with the birth of the Srikakulam Armed peasant struggle. Similar to the armed struggles of Telengana and Naxalbari it classically followed the Chinese path of protracted peoples was formulated by Chairman Mao. It imbibed the spirit of the martyrdom of Comrade Che Guvera and the Great proletrain Cultural Revolution which strived to create the new Socialist man. The resistance offered was reminiscent to that of the People of Vietnam in a similar period. Read More »

The cross-border farmworker rebellion

by David Bacon

Peoples World | November 02, 2018

The cross-border farmworker rebellion

The family of Lorenzo Sanchez and Felipa Lopez, in front of the broken-down trailer the grower rents them for $800 a month. | David Bacon

Surrounded by blueberry and alfalfa fields near Sumas, Washington, just a few miles from the Canadian border, a group of workers last week stood in a circle behind a trailer, itemizing a long list of complaints about the grower they work for. Lorenzo Sanchez, the oldest, pointed to the trailer his family rents for $800 a month. On one side, the wooden steps and porch have rotted through. “The toilet backs up,” he said. “Water leaks in when it rains. The stove doesn’t work.”

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India: Small Peasants and Family Labour

by R Mukherjee

Frontier | Autumn Number 2018 | Vol. 51, No.14 – 17, Oct 7 – Nov 3, 2018

It is no wonder that the United Nations has declared 2014  as “the year of family farms”, which globally account for about 85 percent of farm holdings. These farms provide livelihood opportunities to about 2.5 billion people across the world, and 84 percent of them belong to the category of small holders or peasants owning less than two hectares of agricultural land. Available estimates show that about 87 percent of the world’s 450 million small holders are in Asia and the Pacific region. China and India together account for about two-thirds of small holders, with those in India contributing about 50 percent of the total agricultural output. In China, the existence and persistence of the small holder individual peasants’ farms in large number with family labour shows the continuance of the remnant of the past.Read More »

Land Reforms as political agenda for 2019

by | October 30, 2018

Land Reforms are a forgotten subjects for the political parties and the policy makers. It is ironical that the ‘biggest’ democracy of the world does not give the issue of land reforms a priority. Even the political parties have paid merely lip services. The social movements that we have seen during the past few years were actually against the transnational corporations land grabbing but remained silent on the grabbing by the caste elite in rural areas which grew on the encroachment of the land belonging to the marginalised sections of society especially the Dalits and Adivasis.Read More »

The Life of Labour: Farmers Begin 10-Day Strike Demanding Loan Waiver and Increased MSP

by Venkat T., Srividya Tadepalli & Thomas Manuel

The Wire | June 03, 2018

The Life of Labour: Farmers Begin 10-Day Strike Demanding Loan Waiver and Increased MSP

Illustration by Aliza Bakht

The Life of Labour, a compilation of important labour developments from around the world, will be delivered to your inbox every Sunday at 10 am. Click here to subscribe.

Four years after being regularised, 20,000 workers in Haryana lose their jobs after HC order

In the build-up to the 2014 state elections, the Bhupinder Singh Hooda-led Congress government passed an order regularising 20,000 government contract workers. The move has been declared illegal by the High Court which means that these 20,000 workers have effectively lost their jobs. The Congress government had utilised a method that was legally untenable. The court has given the state government six months to do fresh appointments via the regular process. The only bone that it has thrown to these workers is that the age criteria for the jobs will be relaxed for them – once. It’s interesting to note that despite being a Congress decision, the succeeding BJP government led by Manohar Lal Khattar defended the appointments in court, according to Hindustan Times.Read More »

Ten-Day Farmer Strike Begins; Food, Dairy Supplies May be Hit in North India

The Wire | June 01, 2018

Ten-Day Farmer Strike Begins; Food, Dairy Supplies May be Hit in North India

Farmers in Mandsaur, Madhya Pradesh, are demanding farm loan waivers and better prices for their produce. Credit: PTI

New Delhi: Farmers across north India began a ten-day strike on Friday (June 1), demanding higher minimum support price (MSP), assured income and complete loan waiver. As part of their protest, the farmers, will stop supplying vegetables, fruits and dairy products to cities in their region. The strike comes a year after the farmer protests of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra last year where six farmers in Mandsaur died in police firing.Read More »