Enqbate http://www.enqbate.com Fri, 11 Jul 2014 07:53:34 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.2.1 Indian agriculture: New budget makes it greener for private funding… http://www.enqbate.com/indian-agriculture-new-budget-makes-it-greener-for-private-funding.html http://www.enqbate.com/indian-agriculture-new-budget-makes-it-greener-for-private-funding.html#comments Fri, 30 Mar 2012 09:13:20 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1151 Indian agriculture sector has shifted its gears, thanks to the new direction outlined in the 2012 budget. As compared to prior years, when the budget was tilted towards solving the supply-side bottlenecks, 2012 budget, for a change, was structured to solve the chronic issues ailing the Indian agriculture – irrigation, seed development and miserable post-harvest [...]]]> Indian agriculture sector has shifted its gears, thanks to the new direction outlined in the 2012 budget. As compared to prior years, when the budget was tilted towards solving the supply-side bottlenecks, 2012 budget, for a change, was structured to solve the chronic issues ailing the Indian agriculture – irrigation, seed development and miserable post-harvest facilities – in collaboration with the private sector. Public private partnerships have been getting a great boost in the last couple of years, because of a greater transparency and encouraging outcomes.

2012 Budgetary measures…

A fresh approach to measuring the chronic problems does come out of this budget – the thought and intent needs to be commended. The salient points of the new agricultural investment policy are…

  • A government funding system has been established with the intent of pumping private funding in the agricultural sector. Some of the major areas of private funding in the agricultural sector are..
    1. Irrigation (dams, canals and embankments)
    2. Terminal markets (Mandis)
    3. Soil testing labs
    4. common infrastructures in agriculture and fertilizer segment
    5. Investment in cold chain facilities & warehouses
  • The basic customs duty on a slew of agricultural, horticulture and aggro-processing items has been waived to a great extent
  • The budgetary support for the agriculture ministry was raised by 18% to Rs. 20,208 crores
  • The flagship program of the Indian agriculture, Rshtriya krishi Vikas yojana got a budgetary boost of Rs. 1,357 crores

Agricultural R&D

Agricultural research got a surprisingly big boost of Rs. 200 crores – though this is miniscule compared to the R&D budget of the developed countries. The new budget envisages a greater research incentive in the area of new seed development. Seven major agricultural universities and institutions have been provided grants to undertake research and development activities.

The new agricultural finance company…

A separate state-owned unit called the Irrigation and Water Resources Finance company will be rolled out in 2012-13 to garner resources for funding funding micro-irrigation, contract farming, waste water management and sanitation. The public spending is directed to a greater extent towards micro-irrigation programmes, credit enhancement and agricultural R&D

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/indian-agriculture-new-budget-makes-it-greener-for-private-funding.html/feed 0
Incubating leaders for the new economic order… http://www.enqbate.com/incubating-leaders-for-the-new-economic-order.html http://www.enqbate.com/incubating-leaders-for-the-new-economic-order.html#comments Wed, 21 Mar 2012 06:41:15 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1148 With all due respect to the top business schools in the world, the most envied business alumni  of this planet find the business landscape way too treacherous than what they have been prepared for – and i have witnessed first-hand the planning and precision that goes behind the architecture of the MBA syllabi of these [...]]]> With all due respect to the top business schools in the world, the most envied business alumni  of this planet find the business landscape way too treacherous than what they have been prepared for – and i have witnessed first-hand the planning and precision that goes behind the architecture of the MBA syllabi of these corporate darlings. In sharp contrast, we have ample examples of street-smart entrepreneurs with very modicum of corporate mannerism, surging ahead with only their gut feeling.

Leaders rarely come with a brand, but are molded through the hot & cold treatment of severe business realities. Most of the corporations have established well funded and monitored programs to groom leaders for the new millennium, but very few can vouch that these programs are working to a plan. The infographic below serves the right components for a leadership program in the new economic world order.

For developing countries and continents like India, Africa, Pakistan, SriLanka and Brazil, it is a worthwhile exercise to extend the domain of leadership – create incubation centers for rural and semi-urban leaders. The new economic order in this world seems to be gravitating towards the rural economy and it will be a judicious plan to groom leaders from the backwaters of these countries.

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/incubating-leaders-for-the-new-economic-order.html/feed 0
Livestock economics – Paradigm shift in Indian agriculture! http://www.enqbate.com/livestock-economics-paradigm-shift-in-indian-agriculture.html http://www.enqbate.com/livestock-economics-paradigm-shift-in-indian-agriculture.html#comments Wed, 14 Mar 2012 07:17:11 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1133 It might seem improbable to the followers of Indian economy but it is the new reality – Economic contribution of livestock is today more than that of foodgrain crops. Traditionally, between the 3 pillars of Indian economy – crops, livestock and fisheries; crops were considered the drivers of rural economy. As a result, government policies [...]]]> It might seem improbable to the followers of Indian economy but it is the new reality – Economic contribution of livestock is today more than that of foodgrain crops. Traditionally, between the 3 pillars of Indian economy – crops, livestock and fisheries; crops were considered the drivers of rural economy. As a result, government policies and programs focused on crops. The upstaging of crops by the livestock monetary value was first detected in 2002-03. At this time, it was considered an annual agricultural aberration as a result of a poor agricultural performance. But, then this pattern of growth has maintained its momentum and the last decade has seen a consistent performance by the Indian livestock sector – contributing 5-13% more than the foodgrain crops. The planning commission reports have officially confirmed that both the livestock and fisheries segment have been growing faster than the crops in the last decade.

 

Livestock’s  place in the Indian economy…

  • As of now, livestock contributes more than 25% to the agricultural gross domestic product
  • In 2010-11, livestock generated Rs. 3,40,500 crores
  • This was 28% of the agricultural GDP and 5% of the country’s GDP
  • The total output from livestock was higher than the combined output of foodgrains (Rs, 3,15,000 crores) & fruits and vegetables (Rs. 2,08,800 crore)
  • In 2009-10, livestock was 2.5 times the value of paddy and more than 3 times the value of wheat
  • Rural poverty is marginal in areas where livestock contributes to the agriculture in a greater way

The untapped potential…

India’s livestock productivity is 20-60% lower than the global average, which signals a near absence of policy emphasis and a lack of program structure for the segment. Some of the major factors contributing to the declining livestock growth and below-par performance of the sector are – continued scarcity of feed and fodder, inadequate breeding and reproduction, absence of health care management for the Indian livestock.

 

 

In terms of budget allocation, livestock sector receives only 12% of the total public expenditure  (whereas the contribution is almost 30% of the agricultural GDP) and 4-5% of the total institutional credit flow into the sector – with only 6% of the livestock being insured. The production has been sliding because of the complete apathy in the adoption of livestock technologies. The proposed ‘Indian council of Veterinary and Animal Science Education and Research’ is yet to take off even after repeated recommendations during the 11th and 12th Plan.

As we have discussed repeatedly in this blog, the Indian policies and programs are avenues for the fund diversion to the fat bureaucratic-political-business nexus. What trickles down to the common man is insignificant – in the backdrop of   the skyrocketing population and inflation rate.

 

 

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/livestock-economics-paradigm-shift-in-indian-agriculture.html/feed 0
Plans afoot to set up nationwide cold storage chains for fruits… http://www.enqbate.com/plans-afoot-to-set-up-nationwide-cold-storage-chains-for-fruits.html http://www.enqbate.com/plans-afoot-to-set-up-nationwide-cold-storage-chains-for-fruits.html#comments Thu, 01 Mar 2012 07:29:30 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1122 Annually, 25% of the of the 230 million tonnes of fruits and vegetables finds its way into the garbage cans – For a developing country like India, with aspirations of moving up the world economic pecking order, it is a hard fact to digest. The encouraging fact regarding this waste generating system is that there [...]]]> Annually, 25% of the of the 230 million tonnes of fruits and vegetables finds its way into the garbage cans – For a developing country like India, with aspirations of moving up the world economic pecking order, it is a hard fact to digest. The encouraging fact regarding this waste generating system is that there are positive signals coming out of the Union Agriculture ministry, with concrete plans afoot to invest in cold chain infrastructure for fruits in the upcoming financial year.

An illustration of milk cold-chain is given below. A similar prototype can form the blueprint for the perishable food segment cold chain…

Image credit: www.emeraldinsight.com

Sensible collaboration

The union agriculture ministry has joined hands with ‘Fresh & Healthy Enterprises’, a 100% subsidiary of the government owned Container Corporation of India with the goal of forming a ‘Special Purpose Vehicle’ (SPV). This indigenous SPV is aimed at providing end-to-end cooling logistics for highly perishable fruits like Kinnow, Orange, Banana and Mango.

“The investment in each cold chain will range from Rs.70 – 100 crore depending on the location. The government’s stake will also vary from 40% – 55%. The details of this SPV is being worked out,”  said agricultural secretary P K Basu. These cold chain facilities will be created at logistically critical places like Lucknow and Nagpur which are vital for the storage and transportation of Mango and Oranges respectively. The government will gradually reduce its stake in these ventures after setting

Image credit: thinkmagic.com

The current capacity

As of now, India has around 30 million tonne cold storage capacity. The optimum requirement for minimizing any farm-to-market waste is around an additional 70 million tonnes of cold storage capacity. According to a parliamentary panel report – The post-harvest losses of fruits and vegetables have crossed a very dangerous level of 35% – with a monetary value of more than Rs.50,000 crore  per annum.

According to reports, Government has apportioned an investment of Rs.8150 crore on cold chain development with the intent of creating additional 9-10 million tonnes by 2012. The report also mentioned the setting up of  a ‘National Center for Cold Chain Development’ with members from government, industry bodies like CII, FICCI, growers and cold chain equipment manufacturers as stakeholders.

Realization, albeit late, is indeed  welcome on the part of the Indian decision makers. It is imperative that there is fruitful participation between the industry and the growers, creating a healthy environment for creativity-based solutions.

 

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/plans-afoot-to-set-up-nationwide-cold-storage-chains-for-fruits.html/feed 0
Pan India Green Grid for vegetables & fruits: Storing & Transporting fresh… http://www.enqbate.com/pan-india-green-grid-for-vegetables-fruits-storing-transporting-fresh.html http://www.enqbate.com/pan-india-green-grid-for-vegetables-fruits-storing-transporting-fresh.html#comments Tue, 28 Feb 2012 17:48:32 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1099 Fresh produce losses (25 – 35%) is hard to comprehend in a country where 80% of the population have a hard time organizing 4 meals a day – These perishable product losses translates into annual  monetary losses of  more than Rs. 50,000 crores. While 40% of these post-produce losses happen between the farmer’s fields and [...]]]> Fresh produce losses (25 – 35%) is hard to comprehend in a country where 80% of the population have a hard time organizing 4 meals a day – These perishable product losses translates into annual  monetary losses of  more than Rs. 50,000 crores. While 40% of these post-produce losses happen between the farmer’s fields and till the time the produce is packed. The remaining 60%  perishes during transportation. What this translates into is that a greater percentage of Indian fresh produce ends up as “food for rats and roaches” than for Indians.

India leads the world in the production of the following major fruits and vegetables:

  • MANGO: 21 %
  • BANANA: 36 %
  • CITRUS FRUITS: 12%
  • POTATO: 27%
  • ONION: 12%
  • TOMATO & BRINJAL: 8%
  • TAPIOCA: 7%

 

Image credit: jdinfratechlimited.com

Are we equipped to store and transport the ‘precious perishable products’ that contributes in such great measure to India’s economic resurgence and independence in the 21st century?

 

Indian cold storage landscape: Cold to the Indian needs

The horticultural production share of India in the global market is:

[1] 11% of the world’s vegetables:  ONLY 3-4 %  OF THE GLOBAL VEGETABLE TRADE

[2] 15% of the global fruit production: ONLY 10%  OF THE GLOBAL FRESH FRUITS

 

In 2008:

[1] Indian Fresh Vegetable exports: $369 million [ GLOBAL EXPORT VALUE = $37, 743 MILLIONS]

[1] Indian Fresh Fruit exports: $202 million [GLOBAL EXPORT VALUE = $60,309 MILLIONS]

Horticulture contributes almost 30% of the national agricultural GDP with approximately 6 million hectares under fruit (= 66 million tonnes of fruits) and 8 million hectares under vegetables (= 129 million tonnes of vegetables) – making it the second largest fruit and vegetable producer in the world.

 

 

TO PRESERVE AND TRANSPORT THIS NATIONAL PRODUCE, INDIA HAS ONLY ABOUT 5500 ARCHAIC COLD STORAGE FACILITIES – WHICH CAN HANDLE ONLY 22 MILLION TONNES OF FRESH PRODUCE AT BEST.

Sustained media campaign against the apathy of presiding ministers and the responsible office holders has seen some traction in the area of cold storage development. A government initiative has installed a task force for the creation of cold-storage-chain development at an impressive investment of Rs. 8150 crore. This task force is expected to establish additional 9-10 million tonnes of storage / pack-houses/ripening chamber by 2012. Considering the scarcity of space in Indian nodal towns and cities, micro cold storage facilities with a capacity of 5-7  tonnes is also a practical option.

The proposal for a ‘National Green Grid’ is also under the anvil  for the creation of an end-to-end national transport network.

 

National Fresh Produce transportation: Rooms for improvement

The farm-to-market journey experiences a heavy loss of time and GDP for the Indian subcontinent. The entire chain requires an optimally managed chain of cold storage facilities all along the national transportation corridor. According to the reports, almost 100 tonnes out of 104 million tonnes of perishable produce are transported in a non-reefer mode – shortening their lifespan and increasing the rejection probability. During the 11th Plan…

  • A bank of 1,000 refrigerated containers with 100 mobile pre-cooler vans operating on a pay-to-use model were proposed
  •  This proposal also recommended the launch of 40,000 refrigerated push-carts for street vendors
  • Indian nurseries are still using the hooked on to the old technology. They should adopt modern horticultural practices like greenhouses, mist propagation units, mist irrigation system, modern agricultural machinery, green energy technologies and self-sustaining farm systems

 It is high time that we take concrete and monitored steps towards creating a scientific and intelligent National Green Grid – a pan-India grid of cold storage facilities that helps the growers transport and preserve the ‘fruits of their labor’.

 

Indian Cold storage Grids: Entrepreneurial challenges

In the perishable cold storage business, it is all about volume as the storage need in most cases is very short – which pumps up the price charged per square feet. For entrepreneurs, cash inflow is extremely important and the known roadblocks in the cold storage segment are the high infrastructural capital that is required – in addition to the longer gestation period for the business to bear fruit. The capital investment for launching a cold storage business could run from several hundred crores to thousand of crores. This creates a large ‘barrier for entry’ for small and medium entrepreneurs – especially for building big capacities. Typical gestation period for moderate capacity cold storage enterprise could range from 4 to 6 years.

Technology is tightly coupled with the smooth operation of a well-oiled cold storage.  “The Indian cold chain industry is not mature when compared to emerging destinations,” says Keith Sunderlal, Director of South Asia, International Association of Refrigerated Warehouses. The business dynamics of the cold storage business gives the feeling that only big pocket business houses can set foot, but there have been numerous success stories of small and medium entrepreneurs making a mark in the niche segments.

Indian economy not only needs world-class transportation network, but also requires an interconnected grid of cold-storage chains along the route. Its a win-win situation for entrepreneurs as well as producers.

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/pan-india-green-grid-for-vegetables-fruits-storing-transporting-fresh.html/feed 0
The great Indian sanitation malaise – The health outlook http://www.enqbate.com/the-great-indian-sanitation-malaise-the-health-outlook.html http://www.enqbate.com/the-great-indian-sanitation-malaise-the-health-outlook.html#comments Mon, 20 Feb 2012 14:14:44 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1064 Like all good things in life, good sanitation is only available  to 2-3% of the Indian population. More than 95% of the Indian population have a far greater probability of dying through unhygienic sanitary conditions than by an accidental reason. World Bank has been gathering ground level data about the Indian Sanitation since the beginning [...]]]> Like all good things in life, good sanitation is only available  to 2-3% of the Indian population. More than 95% of the Indian population have a far greater probability of dying through unhygienic sanitary conditions than by an accidental reason. World Bank has been gathering ground level data about the Indian Sanitation since the beginning of the decade and the economic and health figures are more than startling. Sanitation in the developing world is relegated to the category of ‘basic cleanliness’, while the fact is that sanitation in any part of the world is a ‘scientific agenda with a sustainable framework’. Unfortunately, In India sanitation works on the whims and fancies of the local government – the stench and filth is there for the whole world to see and report.

 

 

Understandably, the focus of mismanaged sanitation is on the health of a nation. Inept sanitation system is the outcome of multiple factors in the developing countries – Mal-functional and corrupt governance, unabated population growth, lack of accountability in the system, nepotism and favoritism in the governance, absence of digitization, illiteracy and poverty  – These might be the primary monsters of a developing world, but then there are millions of  corrupt offshoot practices that have successfully corroded the basics of a clean society in these parts of the world.

Here we will establish our focus on both the health and the economic impact of the Indian sanitation insanity…

 

Inadequate Sanitation in India – Health hazards

The UN-WHO Joint Monitoring Programme for Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation (JMPDWSS, 2008, 2010) defines an “improved” sanitation facility as – ” one that hygienically separates human excreta from human contact. These include facilities that flush or pour-flush into a piped sewer system, septic tanks, or pit latrines, as well as ventilated improved pit latrines (also known as VIP latrines) and pit latrines with slab or composting toilets.”

The primary health hazards that have yet to be tackled successfully…

  1. Premature mortality: Millions of young lives lost to diarrheal and other diseases caused by poor sanitation.
  2. Crippling cost of healthcare incurred in the treatment of diseases caused by poor sanitation.
  3. Drastic drop in productivity – because of time lost lost due to recurring sickness and because of the time spent by care-givers.
  4. The total cost of health related costs were Rs. 1.75 trillion ($38.5 billion) (2006 assessment).
  5. Out of the total monetary loss because of bad sanitation, Rs. 1.04 trillion ($23 billion) was because of the premature death of children below 5 years.
  6. The children of the poorest families are most prone to the health hazards of a bad sanitation.
  7. Diarrhea comprises the largest chunk of the health impact because of inadequate sanitation (66%).
  8. The other major diseases which deliver a telling blow to the Indian population in the absence of a proper sanitation are – ALRI, Measles, Intestinal worms, Trachoma and Malaria

Some diseases which are can also be traced back to inadequate sanitation are – polio, skin diseases, HIV/AIDS, urinary tract infections, oral diseases, infectious heart diseases, cancers, influenza,  Impacts on pregnant women, low birth weight.

A (un)healthy view of the the Indian sanitation inadequacy is presented below…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/the-great-indian-sanitation-malaise-the-health-outlook.html/feed 0
Indadequate Indian sanitation system – The economic impact http://www.enqbate.com/indadequate-indian-sanitation-system-the-economic-impact.html http://www.enqbate.com/indadequate-indian-sanitation-system-the-economic-impact.html#comments Mon, 20 Feb 2012 14:10:39 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1087 Economic impacts of inadequate sanitation In one of the first of its kind, the World Bank sponsored study was undertaken by the World Sanitation Program. The sanitation crisis in the developing world is statistically tied to the economic losses incurred by one of the poorest strata of the world. According to this study (2006), the [...]]]> Economic impacts of inadequate sanitation

In one of the first of its kind, the World Bank sponsored study was undertaken by the World Sanitation Program. The sanitation crisis in the developing world is statistically tied to the economic losses incurred by one of the poorest strata of the world. According to this study (2006), the total annual economic impact of inadequate sanitation in India amounted to a loss of Rs. 2.4 trillion ($53.8 billion). That translates into a per capita annual loss of  Rs. 2,180 ($48).

According to this long drawn study – “These economic impacts were the equivalent of about 6.4 percent of India’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2006. The health-related economic impact of inadequate sanitation was Rs. 1.75 trillion ($38.5 billion), which was 72 percent of the total impact. Access time and water-related impacts made up the other two main losses.”

The infographic below depicts the economic impact that can be attributed to each of the subcategories…

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/indadequate-indian-sanitation-system-the-economic-impact.html/feed 0
Igniting the rural non-agri employment in India http://www.enqbate.com/igniting-the-rural-non-agri-employment-in-india.html http://www.enqbate.com/igniting-the-rural-non-agri-employment-in-india.html#comments Wed, 15 Feb 2012 06:54:37 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1060 The Indian Farm Story… The Indian farmlands are reaching a point of  infertility which is entirely man-made and which could have been salvaged with just a bit of agri-commonsense. Instead, farmers were left to the mercy of fertilizer companies who made merry while the government was focused on providing the best agricultural subsidy in the [...]]]> The Indian Farm Story…

The Indian farmlands are reaching a point of  infertility which is entirely man-made and which could have been salvaged with just a bit of agri-commonsense. Instead, farmers were left to the mercy of fertilizer companies who made merry while the government was focused on providing the best agricultural subsidy in the world. Water, power and soil nutrients have become the bane of Indian farm sector.

 

According to the 11th Five-year plan report, “Two-thirds of Indian farmlands are either degraded or sick. Intensive agriculture has leached nutrients and organic carbon from the soil. With the fertiliser ministry decontrolling everything except urea, the result is that the farmers replenish their field only with Nitrogen.”  The result is a fast expanding desert of fecund farmland completely deplete of soil nutrients – witnessing the perennial story of plateauing yields and farmer frustration.

 

The lifeline of farmlands, Water, is in another story of misery which has been tackled in the most inept manner and with utmost lack of foresight. The outcome cannot be more painful for a country which breathes and eats through its villages – More than 40% of India is witnessing a complete collapse in its groundwater levels. According to a recent report from  a Planning commission study, “Level of groundwater extraction is unsustainable in Punjab, Rajasthan and Haryana – and Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Up are fast reaching that ‘point of no return’.

 

Accessibility in Rural India – A closer look…

The Indian Non-Agri saga…

With agriculture in a complete mess, it makes economic sense to cultivate jobs in the rural non-farm sector. A closer look at the rural business landscape clears up the air regarding the unprecedented rural-to-urban migration epidemic in India. Majority of the rural Indian businesses cater to the small needs of the local population – The consumers are  the same farmers whose bread winning capabilities are diminishing day by day. In a way, the rural business is inseparably coupled with the farmlands – and the farmlands are dying an accelerated death.

 

The success story of Amul is yet to be replicated in a modern India.

 

There is no denying the fact that good intentions of the non-political class can be seen around the rural markets. SHGs(Self help groups) and NGOs like NABARD are already implementing sustainable value chain programs in rural India. These programs are aimed at creating a A-Z business channel so that a community can be engaged in sustaining a business and creating incremental wealth out of it. Government sponsored rural programs like – Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (Govt. rural road construction initiative), National Rural Livelihoood Mission (NRLM), NREGS (National Rural employment Guarantee Scheme) have been kicked-off with a lot of fanfare, but have followed in the footsteps of similar programs installed by earlier governments – thus maintaining the bleak track record of dishonest implementation.

Most of the Indian rural welfare programs have started in earnest, only to find most of the funds being siphoned off for urban development. That completes the vicious circle of rural migration.

 

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/igniting-the-rural-non-agri-employment-in-india.html/feed 0
Workers at the receiving end of high inflation and fewer opportunities http://www.enqbate.com/workers-at-the-receiving-end-of-high-inflation-and-fewer-opportunities.html http://www.enqbate.com/workers-at-the-receiving-end-of-high-inflation-and-fewer-opportunities.html#comments Fri, 03 Feb 2012 14:39:28 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1046 According to ASI (Annual survey of Industries), there were approximately 9.2 million workers employed in factories in 2009 – 10. Almost 1/3 rd of these workers were employed in the rural segment and the rest in urban and semi-urban areas. The factories that were covered by ASI were registered under Sections 2m(i) & 2m(ii) of [...]]]> According to ASI (Annual survey of Industries), there were approximately 9.2 million workers employed in factories in 2009 – 10. Almost 1/3 rd of these workers were employed in the rural segment and the rest in urban and semi-urban areas. The factories that were covered by ASI were registered under Sections 2m(i) & 2m(ii) of the Factories Act, 1948. Under this act, all factories will be covered that employ 10 or more workers and which utilize power & factories that employ 20 or more workers and which do not utilize power. This encompasses the manufacturing sector and service segments like waste collection, treatment and disposal, publishing etc…

Booming economy vs Waning wages

Indian economy has withstood a major part of the global financial upheaval (still a long way to go) in spite of the gross incompetency of our decision makers – The major share of credit goes to the unsung labor class. A very miniscule rise in the annual wages was seen between 2001 to 2010 – Rs. 46,054 to Rs. 75,277 respectively. The graph of these annual worker wages lefts much to be desired if it is compared to the salary growth of white and blue collar workers – not to talk of the astronomical rise in the wages of the India Inc. CEOs.

That is a classic national compensation syndrome for the developing world…

Rob Poor Peter to pay Rich Paul…..In sharp contrast to the developed nations where the manual jobs are the most highly paid.

Image Credit: Webpoori.blogspot.in

Even the average worker wages are not an actual indicator of the ground reality. There is a huge disparity between the annual wages of workers in various industry segments.

  • Tobacco factory workers have the lowest annual wages : Rs. 25,415 / annum
  • The coke and refined petrochemical sectors are the highest paymasters: Rs. 186,635 / annum
  • The 8 sectors which pay their workers more than a lakh as annual wages are: Coke & refined petroleum products, repair and installation of machinery and equipments, publishing activities, automotive sector, trailers & semi-trailers, Transportation and metal industry

What lies ahead?

There is nothing beyond just the wages for the backbone of the Indian economy – pension, medical benefits, insurance? Well these are the de-facto employment rights for the collared workers – legacy of an employment system put in place by the British Raj. The enslaved manual labor have just witnessed a couple of changes since 1947. One of them is the change of guards – from a ‘White Master’  to a ‘Brown Sahib’.

Image Credit: Bloomberg.com

Some of the most fortunate workers are those who have been employed by the ruling class (bureaucrats, politicians and those running the show for the politicians). These workers are ensured an employment till their last days and after them their children and grand children will continue to serve the grandchildren of their Sahibs. This is the best pension fund that a worker in the modern India can dream of. The rest of the working class lives and dies a life of anonymity – bereft of all the basic dignities of a normal Indian citizen. We sure can talk about Mukesh Ambani’s Antilla and Vijay Mallya’ fleet of private planes parties – and boast of our GDP growth and the relentless surge of Indian economy.

Image Credit: cxotoday.com

With four square meals a luxury for a worker’s family, the days and nights are squeezed into one endless struggle for a better life – The same story has continued for generations. Every night the best brains from politics and industry will fight it out to prove their party or theory is the best thing to happen to this country – and go back to their cozy habitats. The Indian workers will continue to slog it out to give the Indian economy the well deserved global edge!

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/workers-at-the-receiving-end-of-high-inflation-and-fewer-opportunities.html/feed 0
Gujarat forges ahead with India’s first Special Investment Region (SIR) http://www.enqbate.com/gujarat-forges-ahead-with-indias-first-special-investment-region-sir.html http://www.enqbate.com/gujarat-forges-ahead-with-indias-first-special-investment-region-sir.html#comments Wed, 25 Jan 2012 12:53:50 +0000 Chanakya http://www.enqbate.com/?p=1023 Dholera in Gujarat is set to become India’s first Special Investment Region (SIR). It is projected that the next 10 years will pump in more than $10 billion into this region – that is the mother of all SEZs (Special economic Zones). This economic booster project will be laid out along the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial corridor [...]]]> Dholera in Gujarat is set to become India’s first Special Investment Region (SIR). It is projected that the next 10 years will pump in more than $10 billion into this region – that is the mother of all SEZs (Special economic Zones). This economic booster project will be laid out along the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial corridor (DMIC) with an assuring hand-holding from Japan. The work has gathered momentum towards creating the world’s first real smart city. Japanese are considered as one of the most savvy investors and they are known to choose their pecking spots with  a hawk eye. So, this SIR must have piqued their business interest in order to send a delegation of 150 senior senior investors – these investors were in Ahmedabad to assess opportunities in manufacturing, banking, trading, logistics and other collaboration and investment opportunities.

 

Image Credit: Dholerasir.com

SIR vs SEZ

  • SIR (Special Investment Region) is much bigger SEZ (Special Economic Zone)
  • Unlike SEZ, SIR is not only export oriented – It is a completely habitable megalopolis
  • SIR provides a much larger scope for external and internal investment
  • In the case of Dholera SIR, the process of land acquisition is completely different as compared to a SEZ
  • SIR will be a completely self-sufficient region and can work as an independent economic partner with other regions of the country

Image Credit: ahmedabad.olx.in

About Dholera...

Dholera is neighbor to a long coast line and is located in the Gulf of Khambhat. Agriculture finds few takers in this region because of a predominantly arid and saline land. Dholera is located 140 Kms. from Ahmedabad. The announcement of a SIR in Dholera has seen a spurt of inquiries regarding investment in this region – which is firmly controlled by the Gujarat Government. The completed SIR will span 903 Sq. Km on both sides of DMIC. Because of its proximity to the coastline, the goods manufactured in SIR can be exported through the Gujarat ports. The other major advantage is that the imported goods coming in through the Gujarat ports can be distributed to the Northern Indian regions through a DFC (Dedicated Freight Corridor). As we write this post, the work in the Dholera SIR is going at a jet speed.

 

Image Credit:bhavnagar.olx.in

The major players

Gujarat government has done a commendable job (considering that it has the resources to do so) in contracting the work to some of the most trusted names in the Industry.

  • British Infrastructure Development Halcrow: They are contracted as the master planners
  • Cisco & IBM: They are contracted to develop Dholera as the Smart city – with centralized digital control of all infrastructural facilities such as water, power and gas.

According to DMIDC chief, Amitabh Kant, ” With this system in place, for instance, no one who lives in Dholera will ever get stuck traffic jam – as the system will automatically detect where traffic is being held up and it will recommend the alternative routes to travelers through SMS. There can be no theft of water and power as the system will automatically assess how much water and power you actually use.”

Surely the Way to Go for Gujarat…

 

 

 

]]>
http://www.enqbate.com/gujarat-forges-ahead-with-indias-first-special-investment-region-sir.html/feed 0