Thursday, 31 October 2013

SWADESHI V/S VIDESHI

Recently I had a conversation with distinctive friends. They wanted to buy different products and so asked for my advice. Some exerts
F1: I want to buy a phone.
Me: Go for Micromax. It is an Indian company and offers good services and applications. Or lemon (I advised looking into the increasing trade deficit between India and china).
F1: Are you mad? The name is no way an appreciable word in the public. Further, Samsung and HTC define the class status and also respect.
Me: Okay, you must go for them even if it costs more than 2 double for same specifications.
F2: Bro, I want to buy a new pair shoes. Which is the best brand??
Me: got to Bata or Lakhani. They offer wide variety in reasonable range.
F2: that is ridiculous. I cannot wear such shoes. Man, have you seen any celebrity like Messi, Viraat doing the advertisement of such brands. They are my reference groups and suggest some brand value product like adidas, nike or reebok.
You all, who are reading this blog, may come across such things in your daily life especially if you are living in urban areas. Whether it is clothing or any cosmetic product or any other bloody goods or services, people generally prefer to go for foreign brands. The ideology of consumerism has been injected into the minds of nascent and evolutionary middle class. It has become necessary to buy things that have appeal in front of others. That creates a sense of satisfaction in the minds of people. That reminds me of 1905 when Swadeshi movement which was first started against the economic exploitation and drain of wealth from India. (I  mean to say the methods adopted.)
Liberalization, an aspect of globalization has provided a platform for acceleration of modernity and expansion of market to every sphere of society. Market usually located in public sphere has entered the private sphere of individual and this has contributed for enslavement of man. Even love is expressed in the market and quantified in terms of gifts exchanged and that too with exchange of cards from Archives. Visiting a food joint is more seen as a pilgrimage which has led to macdonalisation of consumption. One goes for a car not as a medium of transport but as a manifestation of life style.
Today, the same exploitation is happening but implicitly. India’s manufacturing base has declined to 16% of GDP. Even after introducing various policies, government has not been able to arrest the declining trend. Manufacturing companies are taken over by MNCs. Explicit economic exploitation is converged into implicit economic exploitation and that has send shock waves throughout the economy as can be seen from recent trend at the bourses. Despite 30% decline in value of rupee, Indian exports have not achieved that much growth. Trade deficit in merchandise still haunt the development ideology.
There is a rise I protectionism in case of America what they call as “BUY AMERICAN”. We want a contemporary Swadeshi movement that not only breaks down the growing culture of consumerism but also that supports Indian products, Indian services. Though it would be impossible to bar companies investing in India in this globalized village, one can change his needs according to the demands and evaluation of individual as well as collective interest of country.


Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Atrocities against Women- Sociological analysis

Women is always considered as second sex and this ideology has led to exploitation of women by patriarchy. They have become vulnerable group due to rising intolerance among the male counterpart on the progressive thinking of women.
Robert Browney considers that atrocities against women are committed in the form of denial of woman’s right to abortion in catholic state even if her life is at stake. They are seen as body of pleasures and thus exploited by men with or without their consent. In case of India various primordial practices like sati were conducted which were subsequently abolished. Therefore atrocities have cultural dimension, advocates Ranji Palirwala.
Utsa Patnaik tells that atrocities are a form of economic exploitation of women in family. They are forced to work more than a pair of bullocks and in return are not granted any privileges and food.
Veena Das advocate that women are worst victims of violence. Whether it is war in family or country, atrocities are committed against women in the form of kidnapping, bride burning, rape, sexual assault and trafficking. Leela Dubey considers that atrocities are implicitly conducted in the form of restriction on movement, clothing pattern, socialization, and also in the form of early marriages. Dowry is demanded from them and divorce is institutionalized in case of non-fulfillment of demands of bride.
Patricia Uberoi talks about institutionalization of atrocities by state by formulating family planning which leads to experimentation on woman’s body through abortion as well as new scientific techniques and leads to loss of reproductive power, isolation and exploitation. A women is forced to kill another women before she is born.
Selvan considers that dalit women are killed, their modesty outraged, they are forced to walk naked and burnt in case of South Indian Villages. Therefore atrocities of women start from private sphere and expand to public sphere with the age of the woman.
Annihilative measures require government to implement law in letter and spirit coupled with breakdown of cultural norms and values. When Utsa Patnaik and Omvedt calls for economic and financial independence of women, equal wage for equal work, radical feminist advocates for shift from marriage centric to divorce centric society.

Kalpana Sharma(a columnist in The Hindu) says that women require all round development and political, social, economic empowerment through reservation, equal wages, sensitive police and judicial system and recognition of their freedom.

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Religious Revivalism and Fundamentalism with Contemporary Context

When RR is based on religious upheaval, fundamentalism is an extreme form of ideology and it is more than a religious concept. Globalization has accelerated the rise of consumerism, individualism and questioned religion and provided for pluralist societies driven by distinctive religions.
Globalization created an apprehension in mind of different communities about their survival and hence they are going for reproduction of children or mass killing of other group. Robert Browney considers that RR and Fundamentalism has led to rejection of women rights to abortion in case of catholic state, denial of livelihood rights to minorities in case of Israel and in case of India, acceleration of communal violence.
TN Madan points out that it is a form of symbolic exhibition. It enforces its power through ban of books and questions to art, literature, debate and discussions. Thus spirit of science is questioned and aesthetic and rational thinking is suppressed.
They have contributed for ethnic conflicts in western countries and attacks on religious minorities, difference of opinion in construction of temples in Russia, and demands for creation of religious institutions by one community by demolition of institution of other community. It has created suspicious interpersonal relations among different communities. People of one community are looked down upon as aliens and their fundamental rights are violated, they are confined into preventive detentions. Parties formulate policy based on ideology of a community to win votes.
Feminist point out that woman suffers the greatest risk from RR and fundamentalism. They are raped, killed and shot in head for their progressive views or abstained from driving cars and wearing western cloths.

Therefore RR and fundamentalism has a wider gamut of social impact on every structure and more world go for modernization and integration, more religious revivalism will gain prospect.

Social Movement

Social movements are a reaction to maintenance of status quo and initiation of social change. It can be in the form of protest, collective mobilization. Marx considers that social movement is revolution driven by true class consciousness of workers for establishment of communism. This substantiated the ideological premise of social change.
However Max Weber considers that SM are not ideological specific but also based on type of leadership, change in value system, education etc. Various scholars consider that social movements are the product of political isolation or economic disparity. Rajni Kithari considers that green revolution, CDPs have contributed for rise of multi party system which contributed for social movement against single party system at the centre and thus gave rise to coalition system.
Guha and Gadgil consider that social movement are environmental movements which are issue specific and parochial in nature. While Smelser considers that social movement are influenced by structural conduciveness, appropriate resources, participation, media campaigns, technology etc.

Therefore it can be advocated that social movements are dynamics and participative and transformed from ideological based to issue based and this can be gauged from Anti Corruption movement, Anti Posco movement, Narmada Bachao Andolan, RTI movement for the growth of inclusive society.

Constitution and Social Change

Constitution is a living document in the sense that it perceives social transformation through various flexible mechanism and provisions according to the need and aspirations of the people. About 100 C.A.Act testify this.
Amartya Sen considers that constitution initiates and perpetuates social change which can be gauged from freedom of speech and expression, provision for safeguarding interest of minorities, SCs and STs and education for all. It acknowledged development ideology of socialism and equitable distribution.
Rajni Kothari indicates that Constitution provided for multi party parliamentary democracy in India. It has contributed for political socialization through establishment of PRIs, division of power etc and thus contributed for social change in India.
Gail Omvedt considers that constitution provided for emancipation of dalits and subsequently gave rise to initiation of dalit consciousness for the development inclusive society.
Indian constitution provides for protection of women. It advocates for special provisions for acceleration of welfare of children. It provides for planned development through its DPSP for equitable distribution of wealth among various sections of society

Untouchability

Untouchability is a value loaded concept that perceives that some sections suffer from stigma of pollution. It carries moral, humanistic, political and cultural dimensions. It is considered as a violation of human rights of a person and abstains him from fully achieving his/her potential.
Constitution of India abolished untouchability under Article 17 under all forms but even after 65 years of independence, untouchability is still practised in India is different forms. Louie Dumont considers that untouchability is pervasive in case of India because Indian culture is driven by the principle of purity and pollution. Dalits are always indulged in menial jobs and are not allowed to drink water from village wells and cannot enter the villages. Brahminic supremacy has led to social, political and economic exclusion of untouchables.
Dalits are still subject to segregation with little access to temples, water sources and upper caste areas. They are working in degrading occupations like tanning, shoemaking, manual scavenging, sweeping, carrying dead animals etc. More than 90% of Untouchables belongs to Schedule caste and Schedule tribes. India might be rising, sensex might be gaining but these people donot have choice to work.
Segregation and discrimination is blindly followed in schools. Dalit children are made to sit separately in schools. Uncooked food is served to them and they are forced to clean their utensils. They cannot wear shoes in front of upper castes. Sometimes they are also forced to do heavy work and cleaning of schools.
Dalits have also been subjected to police apathy as in case of UP, they are killed and immolated by the higher caste in Haryana, their women are raped and forced to walk naked in front of the whole village.

Therefore untouchability was present in past and it is present in contemporary times due to lack of liberal attitude of upper caste and low enforcement of laws by government.

Caste, Class and Power

Interrelation between caste, class and power has been discussed by various sociologists in big way. Initially, it was considered that caste is class and power is defined on the basis of tradition and roles are spelt out by culture. Therefore, when Brahmins have control over ritual power, vaishayas have control over economic power and khsatriyas control the through might is right.
However Marxist scholar such as Dange considers that Brahmins were a caste which subsequently developed class status by performing rites, magic and ritual to ensure rain falls on time, fertility is induced into soil, wars are won. Therefore the economic and political roles of priestly class made them superior to others and they wield great power and advices were taken by princes from them.
Daniel Thorner considers that agrarian classes have strong social and cultural genesis. Maliks belong to upper caste and have close nexus with police, while kisans belong to artisan caste and dalits, tribes etc were mazdoors class and are voiceless.
M.N.Srinivas considers that relation between caste and class is based on the concept of power. Introducing the concept of New Avatar of Caste and Dominant class, he advocate that different castes and classes are coming together to capture state power. They went for sanskritisation, improved their position in ritual and secular hierarchy, and later they formed cohesive groups and parties using their caste status and mobilizing their caste people to capture power in PRIs, state assemblies.
Andre Beteille considers that relationship between the three is not harmonious as it was in past. Caste 1 is class 4 is power 3. There is a shift from harmonic to disharmonic relation in social structure of society. It can be attributed to modern education, migration, growth of caste free occupations in industrial towns.

In order to encapsulate, the relationship between three is dynamic which should be studied on distinctive basis. It is based on utility and convenience rather than ideology.

Development Displacement

Development displacement is regarded as product of indistrialisation, globalization and carry social dimensions. Manorajan Mohanty points out that it a form of distress migration which leads to growth of bonded and agricultural laborers which suffer from lack of access to basic facilities, education, low wages and grim health conditions and has curtailed the voice of voiceless.
V. Xaxa indicate that it has led to change in the tribal community structure and contributed for detribalization, deculturation and forced eviction from the land and forests which carry cultural and religious dimensions in life of tribals.
Utsa Patnaik considers that development displacement has contributed for breakdown of family. Women and children became vulnerable as men moved out for work to urban areas. It has also contributed for the rise of women headed households.

It can be advocated that though Nehru-Mahalanobis techniques promised trickle down impact of development, it has led to displacement which contributed for depeasantization, acceleration of poverty, marginalization, disarticulation and despair leading to rise of people’s movement in different pockets of country.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Effect of Poverty On Child’s Education (Insights Weekly Essay Writing)


Poverty as a concept does not carry economic connotations but also has social, humanistic, political and cultural dimension. When one talks about poverty one takes into consideration the economic deprivation faced by a person in his life. However as Durkheim pointed out that one social fact must be studied in the light of other social facts and how one affects the other. Looking into this concomitant relationship between poverty and education, one can say that in India poverty is more common than prosperity because of lack of education facility especially to children. Poverty has a multitude effect on the learning process as it acts as a bulwark in the psycho-cognitive development of the child. It restrains a child to completely participate in the knowledge exercise which hampers his behavioral pattern.
India provided for Right to Education to all children from 6-14 years of age and engendered that process even in private institutions through reservation of 25% seats. However it has not been able to produce the desired result because of extreme economic deprivation on the part of families availing this facility.
Poverty has a direct impact on the school enrolment and dropout rate of students. Due to extreme poverty, where the survival of the family is at stake, parents are forced to send their children to work. A child is seen as a productive labour resource as against schools. Most of this psychosis is built on short term interest without looking into the long term benefits of education.
Poverty also leads to denial of basic facilities like sanitation, nutritious food and clean drinking water. This subsequently effects the mental and physical growth of the child which consequently leads to worse educational indicators. It has been pointed out in a report that most of the shunted children have low mental stimulus abilities and prone to diseases. This is because the faceal matter often mixes with water and food which decreases the nutrition absorption rate. This is a grave situation for educational enrolment as most of time is spent either in hospitals or home. The success of Mid day meal Scheme in increasing the gross enrolment holds testimony to the fact that how poverty and food hinders the institutional access of knowledge.
There has been growing tuition and coaching industry. As pointed out by different studies, RTE has been able to provide the access to education which lacks the quality Most of the government schools lack trained teaching facilities and infrastructure. However well off class compensate this through supplementary methods like coaching etc. But most of the children belonging to economically backward sections have no access to tuitions and coaching centers due to lack of resources and whooping fees.
Further, it has been a old prognosis that children suffering from poverty also suffers from poverty of knowledge and they cannot develop the requisite skills with other counterpart. This leads to a behavioral difference from the teachers. Whether children work at home or outside, their effort to juxtapose work-related responsibilities with classroom routines makes their life at school topsy-turvy. Absence from school or inability to focus makes a direct impact on performance. Once a child starts to lag behind others, he or she becomes a relevant object of stereotyping by classmates and teachers. That renders a child alienated from the social milieu and leads to higher dropout.
All the factors developed above require a coordinated approach from the central and state government and also requires the sensitization of teachers and civil society organization about the basic needs of such children who suffers from poverty. There is a need to regulate the unorganized sector and develop a perspective about the long term benefits of education to economically backward sections. The teachers must be given proper training so as to create awareness and develop humanistic attitude towards such children. Poverty is a social sin which will always haunt the development ideology of the country but one can guarantee a phased success by providing better education to children so that they can grab the opportunity in the organized market whenever they are available.