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Green Revolution, Part II

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  1. Green Revolution, Part II

  2. Problems in India & Pakistan • GR benefits larger farmers, but drives poorer farmers into debt • Increased costs of fertilizer, seeds, machinery • Irrigation a problem in both countries due to dropping water table, silt build up in canals and dams • Does not solve the problem of rural unemployment, low wages, landlessness

  3. Water logged soil (l), salinization (r)

  4. Political structures and GR • In both areas, local governments have committed to subsidizing electricity and water • Local parties seek agrarian votes in India, good relationships with rural magnates in Pakistan • New wealth in both countries associated with new political formations and sometimes with political instability • Punjab militancy of 1980s-90s (India); ethnic tensions in Pakistan—Punjab v. Sind • Prosperity for the mid-to-top level of farmers obscures worsening debt and income situation of majority of poorer farmers • Remains unclear if gains will be sustainable

  5. Roots of the Punjab Crisis • In the late 1970s the Sikh regional party the Akali Dal had been gaining votes in Punjab • Sikhs alienated by Congress’ stand on water rights, control of Chandigarh, division of colonial Punjab • By late 70s different Sikh preachers and factions challenge Akali Dal, also some like Bhindrawale are associated with a fiery new rhetoric • Middle level farmers who benefitted from GR wealth influenced by religious reform ideas • Concerns about the impact of new wealth on morality and social structures • Pressure of unemployment for educated rural youth due to lack of non-agrarian jobs

  6. Punjab and Mrs. Gandhi • Demands for a Khalistan aired –include complex issues of sovereignty/water rights • While in power Mrs. Gandhi stalls on these issues • When out of power after the Emergency ends changes tactics • Mrs. Gandhi secretly encouraged factions to break up the Akali Dal stronghold • Re-elected in 1984 Mrs. Gandhi again voices opposition to the Akali Dal demands • Armed opposition to the Indian gov. accelerates

  7. Punjab in the 1980s • Mrs. Gandhi denounces separatism • Rhetoric of Bhindrawale and associates escalates they occupy Golden Temple in Amritsar • Attacks on government officials and Hindus in public areas and buses • In 1984 in “Operation Bluestar” Mrs. Gandhi sends in the army into the Sikh shrine, many civilians are killed • Later that year Mrs. Gandhi assassinated by Sikh bodyguard • Hundreds of Sikhs killed in N. India, particularly Delhi

  8. The Return of Normalcy in Punjab • The process was very slow—multiple talks such as the Rajiv Gandhi-longowal accords fail. • Indian gov. only makes concrete gains once Congress is out of office. • Negotiations concluded with moderate wing of the Akali Dal, a provisional amnesty extended to some militants • Slowly normalcy returns to Punjab by late 1990s, but resentment towards gov. continues

  9. Pakistani Punjab and ethnic tensions • Two regions in Pakistan have dominated politics since the 1970s. • The Muslim League in Punjab has benefitted from the gains made by large farmers due to GR. • Extensive patronage in Punjab during the rule of Gen. Zia (1979-84), Nawaz Shariff (during 1990s), and Musharaff • In Sind the opposition PPP commands a different ethnic and economic base. • In 1980s to distinguish itself from PPP’s platform of Islamic socialism Gen. Zia and some ML leaders promote a more fundamentalist version of Sunni Islam • Continued effect of this era in Pakistani politics

  10. Operation Flood and the “White” Revolution • In Gujrat, industrialized dairy production encouraged by farmer’s cooperative • Boosts middle-range incomes from use of European dairy breeds, feeds, hormone, and antibiotic treatment • Huge upswing in Dairy production, but products largely directed to urban rather than rural markets • Water issues and health concerns continue to be raised about this program, although it is generally considered more successful than the GR due to it greater effort to navigate issues of class

  11. Issues to Consider for the future: • Growing population continues to be an important concern in both countries—land is already under heavy population pressure • Water scarcity in both countries growing— • aging canals/dams have less capacity due to silt build up • S. Indian rivers have less flow • Growing drought concerns in Pakistan • Ground water scarcity growing in both countries • Even if food production can be sustained, affordability and access lead to food insecurity for poor • Rising fuel costs a concern even for wealthy farmers