Skip to main content

Punjab's farmers, except big ones, earning less than what they are forced to spend: Study

By Rajiv Shah
Rural Punjab may be richer compared to the rest of India's rural areas, but a recent study has raised the alarm that, except for big farmers, all other categories – marginal, small, semi-medium and medium in accordance with their farmsize – are forced to spend more than what they actually earn. Titled “Levels of Living of Farmers and Agricultural Labourers in Rural Punjab”, the study insists, the result is, “Large sections of the farm households have been facing a great deal of distress and increased debt burden.”
Carried out by mainly by Punjabi University scholars Gian Singh, Anupama, Rupinder Kaur and Gurinder Kaur, and Sukhveer Kaur of the Dashmesh Khalsa College, Zirakpur, and published in the “Journal of Rural Development”, National Institute of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Hyderabad, the study states that “average propensity to consume comes to 1.15 for an average farm household”, suggesting that their income less than their spending.
According to the study, the propensity to consume is the highest (1.35) among the marginal farm-size category, and decreases as farm-size increases. Thus, it says, “An average household incurs an annual deficit of Rs 43,940.95. The highest deficit of Rs 64,459.08 is incurred by the small farmsize category, followed by the marginal, semi-medium and medium farm-size categories.” It underlines, only “the large farm-size category has a surplus of Rs 66,533.35.”
Income of various category of farmers vs expenditure
As for the farm workers,the average propensity to consume per household comes to 1.12, with an average agricultural labour household incurring an annual deficit of Rs 9,427.17. “This”, states the study, “Implies that agricultural labour households try to maintain a minimum level of consumption and whether they can afford it or not.” The result is, an average amount of debt per agricultural labour household comes to Rs 54,709.30.
Based on a primary survey in three Punjab districts, Mansa, Ludhiana and Hoshiarpur with a sample size of 1,007 farm households and 301 agricultural labour households in 27 villages, the study shows that the annual income earned is Rs 1,39,365.27, Rs 2,22,992.32, Rs 3,69,432.68, Rs 5,66,407.60 and Rs 12,02,780.38 for each household with marginal, small, semi-medium, medium and large farm-size categories, and Rs 81,452.17 for an agricultural labour household.
However, when it comes to consumption expenditure, the households belonging to the large farm-size category record it at Rs 11,36,247.03, which is less than the income. On the other hand, it says, “The annual consumption expenditure for the marginal, small, semi-medium and medium farm-size categories has been recorded at Rs 1,88,523.14, Rs 2,87,451.40, Rs 4,05,573.08 and Rs 5,97,275.52, respectively”. As for an average agricultural labour household, it is Rs 90,897.37.
Pointing out that “the consumption expenditure of the large farm-size category is found to be 6.03 times the consumption expenditure of the marginal farm-size category and 12.5 times the consumption expenditure of the agricultural labour households”, the study says, while the “an average sampled farm household spends 40.29 per cent on the nondurable items”, the marginal farm-size category “spends the maximum, i.e., 50.38 per cent of total consumption expenditure on such items.”
With an annual consumption expenditure of Rs 90,897.37, an average agricultural labour household, on the other hand, spends 56.63 per cent on the non-durable items, of which foodgrains comes to 14.06 per cent, followed by milk and milk products and clothing 11.56 per cent and 5.58 per cent, respectively, and 18.62 per cent on services, especially healthcare (8.72 per cent) and education (4.39 per cent).
As for the expenditure on conveyance, entertainment and communication, which include socio-religious ceremonies if the agricultural labour household spends 16.43 per cent. On the other hand, if the expenditure on socioreligious ceremonies alone account for 18.22 per cent for an average farm household, its proportion is a high 32.09 per cent among the large farm-size category.
While four-fifths of all agricultural households are under debt, and the average amount of debt per sampled farm household is Rs 4,74,215.99, with the amount of indebtedness going up with each farmsize, the amount of debt per acre owned tells the real story: It is the highest among the marginal farmers (Rs 1.41 lakh), followed by small farmers (Rs 1.21 lakh), semi-medium farmers (Rs 82,000), medium farmers (Rs 63,000), and large farmers (Rs 58,000).

Comments

TRENDING

Sanjiv Bhatt paying price for deposing on Modi role in Gujarat riots: Wife Shweta

Counterview Desk
Following the Jamnagar sessions court ordering life imprisonment to former IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt for his alleged involvement in three decades old custodial death case, his wife Shweta Bhatt has said that he has been sentenced for a “for a crime he did not commit”, even as criticizing the Indian Police Service (IPS) Association, Gujarat, for not standing up for him.

Senior advocates targeted because they took up cases against Amit Shah: Lawyers' NGO

Counterview Desk
The Lawyers Collective (LC), an NGO claiming to promote human rights issues, has expressed surprise at the latest move by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to register an FIR against the Lawyers Collective (LC), its president Anand Grover and unknown office bearers for alleged violation of the Foreign Contributions Regulation Act (FCRA).

US research: 40% of India's casteist Facebook posts are anti-reservation, anti-Dalit

By Rajiv Shah
A recent American civil society research has found that 40% of India's casteist posts on Facebook (FB) have anti-reservation slant. Asserting that the reservation policy in India is similar to affirmative action in the United States, the research study, titled "Facebook India: Towards The Tipping Point of Violence Caste and Religious Hate Speech", says, this type of hate content on FB is mainly directed against Dalits and Adivasis.

Demand for Bharat Ratna to Dalai Lama as top RSS leader warns China of 'strong' action

Nava Thakuria*
Dharamshala: Indian supporters for a free Tibet have urged the Government of India to confer Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian honour, on the Tibetan spiritual leader, the 14th Dalai Lama, for his “immense contributions” in creating goodwill for India in the last six decades. A declaration, adopted at the 6th All-India Tibet Support Groups’ Conference held on June 15 and 16 in Dharamshala township of Himachal Pradesh, said that the Nobel laureate continues to be a holy ambassador of Indian culture enriched with non-violence, compassion and religious harmony.

One of the least peaceful countries, India's global peace ranking deteriorates: Report

By Rajiv Shah
A just-released report has asserted that India's ranking in the Global Peace Index (GPI) is 141st among 163 countries, deteriorating by four ranks in a year. Ranking 163 countries by providing a score to each, the report, prepared by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), headquartered in Sydney, Australia, has found India to be one of the least peaceful nations in the region.

How Gujarat govt imposed curbs on livestock export for 'fear' of losing BJP vote share

By RK Misra*
Insidious are the ways authorities function, preaching one thing, practicing quite another. Administrative muscle-flexing to suit political goals was on display when the BJP-led Vijay Rupani government in Gujarat banned the export of livestock days ahead of Eid. Even the Narendra Modi-led government expressed its intent to confirm it countrywide, but stopped short of doing so.

Ex-CEA is 'right': India's new GDP growth data didn't pass the smell test. They still don't

Counterview Desk
In a hard-hitting defence of former chief economic adviser (CEA), Government of India (GoI), Arvind Subramanian, who created a major flutter by arguing in a recent paper that India's growth rate has been inflated by 2.5%, prominent academic Dr V Anantha Nageswaran wonders why is GoI not making available the Central Statistical Organization (CSO) data and methodology to independent statisticians for verification.

Gujarat govt 'considers' temples, charitable institutions as shops and establishment

By Pankti Jog*
The Gujarat state assembly recently passed a new law which would "govern" the working condition of shops and establishments. One of the most talked about provisions of the Act is, it allow shops and establishments across Gujarat to function 24 hours.

There is no 'separate' Kashmir story, as there is for Afghanistan, Nepal, Tibet, Palestine

By Mohan Guruswamy*
Kashmir is the northernmost geographical region of South Asia. Until the mid-19th century, the term "Kashmir" denoted only the valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal mountain range. The name Kashmir derives from the Sanskrit Kashyapmeru. The Greeks knew it as Kaspeiria. Herodotus called it Kaspatyros.

FIR against Lawyers’ Collective a ‘witch-hunt’ of outspoken human rights defenders

Counterview Desk
In a statement, Ravi Kiran Jain* and Dr V Suresh** of the People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) have said the CBI’s FIR against the Lawyers’ Collective and senior advocate Anand Grover is an undisguised attempt to silence not just the top human rights organization but is also meant to “serve as a lesson to all others who dare to challenge the Central Government.”
Calling the FIR “motivated, vengeful and vituperative act”, PUCL said the Lawyers’ Collective, which has for 38 years of its existence has taken up cases related with domestic violence, human rights, labour and womens’ rights, adding, among the important ones are the “Naz case on rights of the LGBTQ community, the Novartis case, the Sabarimala case, the triple talaaq case and the Sohrabuddin case, in which current Home Minister and BJP leader Amit Shah was involved.”
Demanding immediate withdrawal of the FIR, PUCL said, “The case lodged against the organization smacks of vendetta for its exceptional …