Wednesday, January 27, 2010


‘Limited income’ but ‘unlimited expenditure’ has the consequential effect of unhealthy economic imbalance in the day to day way of life. Apparently, a vacuum has been created in the smooth life standard of the people. Assam, a part State of the Indian sub-continent has extensive agricultural lands, mighty rivers with their un-reckonable tributaries, huge numbers of beels, ponds and water pools, but, in fact, the austerity of life style can not be maintained out the agricultural products and fish population derived out of lands and water pools. The people have, therefore, to depend largely on the imported food staff and fishes from places out side the State. The raw materials like jute, superi, hides and skins can not be utilized in converting into finished products due to the dearth of industrial base. The raw materials have thus to be disposed of at a cheaper value paving way for ardent and unlimited fiscal gain by inter- State industrial - giants and the resourceful business magnets. The State of Assam is deprived of the legitimate pecuniary benefits. The reasons of poor agricultural outturn out of the lands are of many folds. The methods of cultivation applied in Assam, are very old and unscientific ones. Application of modern devices of cultivation by tractors, power tillers and of like is very rare. The manures used in the field by traditional burning of tree-leaves, paddy roots or application of cow dung are the cultivators’ normal habits. The chemical fertilizers are applied by a class of well to do people and the same are almost out of the reach of the common cultivators. The irrigation system is not upto the mark. Draughts play a vulnerable role in damaging the products. The century- backs ‘harrows and ploughs’ are the main agriculture implements in Assam. In other States, the application of modern implements ensures at least four types of cultivation in a year with yields of substantial products, while in Assam, more than two crops products in a year can not be expected. The products are also in most cases divisible amongst the land lords and the cultivators and such shared production becomes insufficient. The total area of Assam is 78,438 square kilometer. The cultivating land will be hardly 1/5th of the total area, as the hilly areas rivers and other water pools, townships cover a plenty part of the total area. The population of the State as per 2001 census is 2,66, 55,526 nos. The areas, covered for production of different types of crops with the quantities of production are, as below : *(a) Areas of production 2004-05 2005-06 +(b) Quantities of production (a) Rice (different types) 2383000 hectare 2420000 hectare (b) “ 3470000 Tonnes 3552000 Tonnes (a) Cereals “ 2474000 “ 2497000 “ (b) “ 3556000 ‘ 3624000 “ (a)Food crops “ 2582000 “ 2597000 “ (b) “ 3617000 “ 3680000 “ (a) Oil seeds 287000 “ 254000 “ (b) “ 147000 “ 110000 “ (a) Fibres 64000 “ 63000 “ (b) “ 436000 “ 605000 “ (a) Fruits & Vegetables 164000 “ 154000 “ (b) “ 1608000 “ 1314000 “ (a) Other misc. crops 131000 “ 129000 “ + Cocoa nuts, as included in oil seeds are in term of million nuts, cotton, mesta, as included in term fibres are 170/180 kg in each bale, arecanut as included in misc. crops is in term of cured nuts and sugar cane is in term of cane. The current figures being mot readily available there will not be much variation of the figures exhibited above. The goods so produced, can not normally meet the growing requirements of the ever increased population phenomena and hence the import of the commodities becomes imperative. Notwithstanding that the fishes of different types have the roaming beds in the rivers and tributaries, the number and area of fisheries in Assam in 2006-07 were, as follow:- Registered Beel - Numbers 430 Area 602215 Hectares Ponds and tanks “ 278755 “ 38767 “ Unregistered Beel “ 766 “ 40600 “ Swamp and waste land “ 9852 “ 39240 “ Registered river fisheries 177 “ - The production of Fish seed in 2006-07 is 2062.61 (million numbers) and that those of fishes were 1,81,479 tones. Obviously, therefore, such commodities can not cater to the growing needs of the people. The question of import has thus gained the momentum. In such import exercise, price element leaps no bound. The high cost at source, the cost of transportation, the whims of the administrative raj, the touts’ foul play are the main factors for increase of heavy price. Besides, the question of the margin of profit at the different levels makes way for such mounting price rise, which some times reach four times of the price at the source. The price of the essential commodities has gone to such a high degree that it is practically beyond the reach of the common people. The rich classes of people can effort easily, the poor classes of people survive some how.They have necessity, but no aspiration. But the acute victims are the middle classes of people, who can not accommodate in any way. The fish price is going to be higher and higher. Even the small sizes of fishes cost Rs. 400.00 per kg. Assam produces abundant vegetables, but the prices of the same have simultaneously gone high. There is margin of four times growth of price in urban areas, compared to the rural areas. The Government of Assam has not finally given effect to the revised pay scale to the employees. So, naturally, the employees can not stand before such heavy price rise. What is generally done is that they take resort to acquire black money to over come the challenge of grave economic crisis. So, the fiscal indiscipline and a financial instability has gained the momentum. It is high time that Government should awake up from deep slumber and take remedial measure to restore stability.

(Mrinal Kanti Chakrabartty)
“Rudrs Bhawan”R.G. Barua Road,

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