Livelihood

Farmers and Loan Money “Amadaw Kyay” Under BSPP

Daw May Myo Khine, 49 years old, who once lived in Sittwe, capital of Rakhine, and whose grandfather and father owned many rice farms explained that under the Burmese Socialist Programme Party, some farmers grew two different kinds of rice. They grew low quality rice, which they would sell to the government at the prescribed price and good quality variety, which they would eat themselves. The government gave farmers loans called “Amadaw Kyay”  for growing rice. In return, the farmers had to sell the harvested rice to the government.

Taking the Migrants Home (2)

Shramik Special trains were started to take home lakhs of stranded migrant labourers and their families to their hometown. Many of them have run of out of money and food because of the restrictions imposed to combat the Covid 19. The relief mesaures have been ill planned. Those coming from Surat in Gujarat have alleged that they were charged Rs 800 against a ticket with a printed cost of Rs 630. The labourers said they had no choice but to pay the money if they wanted to return. 

Waiting for food

With no forewarning of nation-wide locked as announced on 25 March 2020 amid the Covid 19 pandemic and no relief measures in place, millions of people, especially daily wage and migrant labourers, in India were caught unawares. Extention of the lockdown even while there were talks of relaxation further added to the woes of the people.

Here one can see people hanging their utensils on railings, while they wait to collect food distributed by volunteers, at Mayur Vihar in Delhi.

Rice, Women and Local Economy: Rethinking Covid-19 Consequences

The images are from Kokrajhar Town bi- weekly market. Every Thursday and Sunday people living in and around the District Headquarter of Kokrajhar in the BTC (Bodo Territorial Council) area visit the main market when the bi-weekly bazaar takes place. The bazaar is a huge affair where assorted items are sold and bought, and contribute to the local economy. From direct producers-to-middlemen-to-whole salers of innumerable products partake in the commercial exchanges here. There are dedicated lanes and by-lanes within the market area for different items sold.

Trades of a Town: Tendu Patta

Madhya Pradesh is India’s leading tendu leaf producing state. Used primarily to make Beedi , this valuable forest produce has a history of control and ownership over the years. Piyush Kothari (63), a local tendu merchant based in Pipariya, talks about the changes in the trade and how the town’s proximity to nearby forest tracts made it suitable for the early traders. Excerpts from our recorded conversation (December 2017):   

The Network of Women: Weaving Freedom

A popular success story of the North-East Network (NEN) is Chizami Weaves where the NEN together with a network of 600+ local women from Chizami and the neighbouring villages of Phek district in Nagaland built ‘Chizami Weaves’  an enterprise that aimed to preserve and promote the rich textile weaving tradition of Nagaland. While empowering rural women economically, it also gave them a voice and agency to bring about positive changes in their families and communities. Gender relations within homes are changing.

U Pein Bridge (1): What Does a Bridge Mean to a Community?

I want to maintain this bridge as our daily wage depends on this,” told to me (Khin Khin Nyein) by one of the women vendors. We observed that she was chewing the beetle leaves and we asked, “where do you spit the beetle juice?” She replied immediately, “[o]n the ground” with a shy laugh. I think the reason why she laughed was because she recognised that she herself did something which made the bridge dirty. 

Pitha - Rice cake

Pitha is the common name used in Assam for rice cake. The Boro pitha is traditionally prepared during the harvest festival. In earlier times indigenous varieties of rice were used for making pitha. Each household has its own way of making pitha/ rice cakes and it is generally women who engage in such activities.  Now-a-days with indigenous rice varieties slowly disappearing, hybrid rice varieties are used for making pitha; and pitha is no longer related with festivities alone.

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