The Day of National Fasting-Friday, 10 April 2020

                Samaj Sevaks, constructive organizations and Gandhians from across the country have strongly felt the need to atone, at the time of this Corona Crisis, for the sins that we have committed against migrant workers. We are all jointly responsible for the utter neglect of the village poor during the last few decades, which made them migrate desperately to cities and live under sub-human conditions. On behalf of all the citizens and in continuation of our campaign #KaronaKuch, Gram Seva Sangh has decided to give this call for a national fast. The Fast shall begin on Friday, 10April 2020, at 6 am and end at 6 pm. On that day we shall fast from wherever we are. During the fast, we shall introspect and decide as to, how to undertake the difficult task of strengthening the village economy and village society in the days to come.

Kindly note! There shall be no public demonstration or public meetings or violations of the social distancing discipline during the entire period. Nobody need leave their house or their post of responsibility during the campaign. Kindly also note, that this fast is not against the government. We appreciate the efforts being done by the Government as also various other public institutions in this regard.

This fast is an atonement. We shall be grateful if people do not politicize it.


  • Gram Seva Sangh

www.gramsevasangh.org | Email ID: gramsevasanghindia@gmail.com | Mobile: 9980043911

Facebook : @gramsevasanghindia | Twitter : @gramsevasangha  | Insta: @gramsevasanghindia

Brother, let’s have a unity of purpose

Gram Seva Sangh, is doing a campaign these days called #KaronaKuch. The aim of this campaign is to bring unity of purpose amongst Indian citizen, during the hour of crisis. We strongly believe, this crisis, though manifesting itself as Corona Emergency, is a deep seated moral and ethical crisis! With this moral and ethical concern in mind, we have been issuing social media posts praising the strong social foundation of every practicing religion in India. The some of our Hindu brothern have objected to our praising the good social values in Islam! These objections are of course based on a certain fact, pointing a figure at the Muslims today!

Brother, we are painfully aware of this! Not just amongst Muslims but amongst every Indian citizen. If social values had not become mere ritual, Mantra, Namaz and Sunday prayer, we would not have gotten into the mess that we are in today.

Do we give up Hinduism, simply because there are problems today in its practice. On the contrary! We shall make extra efforts to bring these ideas into practice! Sharing, Caring and Love! Let us practice it. Others, We are sure, will join us! In any case Unity is the need of the hour, Brother!

  • Gram Seva Sangh Team

Email ID: gramsevasanghindia@gmail.com | Mobile: 9980043911 | www.gramsevasangh.org

Facebook : @gramsevasanghindia | Twitter : @gramsevasangha  | Insta: @gramsevasanghindia

Address: Gram Seva Sangh, Flat #102, Shesha Nivas, 1st Block, 1st Main, Thyagaraj Nagar, Bengaluru-560070

ಮತೀಯತೆ ಬೇಡ

ಕರೋನಾದಿಂದ ಸತ್ತವರೆಲ್ಲ ಒಂದೇ ಸಮುದಾಯದವರು, ಈಗಲೂ ಅವರು ಪ್ರಾರ್ಥನೆಯ ಹೆಸರಿನಲ್ಲಿ ಗುಂಪು ಸೇರುವುದೇಕೆ? ಎಂಬ ತಲೆಬರಹದ ಸುದ್ದಿಯೊಂದನ್ನು, ಕನ್ನಡದಲ್ಲಿ ಪ್ರಕಟವಾಗುವ ರಾಷ್ಟ್ರೀಯ ದಿನಪತ್ರಿಕೆಯೊಂದರ ಮುಖಪುಟದಲ್ಲಿ, ತುಂಬ ರೋಚಕವಾಗಿ ಪ್ರಕಟಿಸಲಾಗಿದೆ. ಸಾಮಾಜಿಕ ಜಾಲತಾಣಗಳಲ್ಲಂತೂ ಬರೇ ಇಂತಹದ್ದೇ ಸುದ್ದಿಗಳು ತುಂಬಿಕೊಂಡಿರುತ್ತವೆ! ಕರೋನಾ ವೈರಸ್ಸನ್ನು ತಡೆಯುವ ಉತ್ಸಾಹದಲ್ಲಿ ಮತೀಯ ವೈರಸ್ಸನ್ನು ಹರಡುತ್ತಿದ್ದೇವೆ ನಾವು! ಸರಕಾರಗಳು ವೈರಸ್ಸನ್ನು ತಡೆಯುವ ಕೆಲಸದಲ್ಲಿ ಗಂಭಿರವಾಗಿ ತೊಡಗಿಕೊಂಡಿರುವಾಗ, ಅವುಗಳೊಟ್ಟಿಗೆ ಸಹಕರಿಸುವ ಬದಲು ಈ ರೀತಿಯ ಸುದ್ದಿಗಳನ್ನು ಹರಡಬಹುದೇ ನಾವು? ನಾವೂ ಸಹ ನಮ್ಮ ಮಂದಿರಗಳಲ್ಲಿ, ತಿಳಿಯದೆ, ಒಟ್ಟಾಗಿ ಪೂಜಿಸಿರಲಿಲ್ಲವೇ? ಹಸಿದವರಿಗೆ ಊಟ ಹಂಚುತ್ತಿರುವಾಗ ದೆಹಲಿಯಲ್ಲಿ ಮೂರುವರೆ ಸಾವಿರ ಬಡವರು ಮುಗಿಬಿದ್ದು ಊಟ ಮಾಡಲಿಲ್ಲವೇ?

ತಪ್ಪು ಮಾಡುವ ಪ್ರಜೆಗಳನ್ನು ತಿದ್ದುವ, ಹಾಗೂ ಅಗತ್ಯಕಂಡರೆ ಶಿಕ್ಷಿಸುವ, ಸಂವಿಧಾನಬದ್ಧ ಹಕ್ಕನ್ನು ನಾವು ನಮ್ಮ ಸರಕಾರಗಳಿಗೆ ನೀಡಿರುವೆವಲ್ಲವೆ? ಸಾಮಾಜಿಕ ದೂರೀಕರಣ (ಸೊಷಿಯಲ್ ಡಿಸ್ಟೆಂಸಿಂಗ್) ಎಂಬ ತತ್ವವನ್ನು ತಪ್ಪಾಗಿ ಹಾಗೂ ಅಪಾಯಕಾರಿಯಾಗಿ ಅರ್ಥೈಸುತ್ತಿದ್ದೇವಲ್ಲವೆ ನಾವು? ವಿಷಮ ಘಳಿಗೆಯಲ್ಲಿ ದೇಶದ ಒಗ್ಗಟ್ಟನ್ನು ಕಾಪಾಡೋಣ, ಒಡಕನ್ನು ಪ್ರಚೋದಿಸುವುದು ಬೇಡ.

  • ಗ್ರಾಮ ಸೇವಾ ಸಂಘ

Email ID: gramsevasanghindia@gmail.com | Mobile: 9980043911 |  www.gramsevasangh.org

Address: Gram Seva Sangh, Flat #102, Shesha Nivas, 1st Block, 1st Main, Thyagaraj Nagar, Bengaluru-560070

#KaronaKuch – An Appeal for Crowd Funding !!

Friend,

            I am sure you have been following #KaronaKuch campaign. We want to carry it forward, reach more people. The campaign hence needs a little funding. Gram Seva Sangh is spear heading the campaign. We are Gandhians. We use money scrupulously. Do send us a small contribution if you can.

Thank You                                                                                                                   Bank Details

Abhilash                                                               Name: Gram Seva Sangh  Bank: Indian Bank

 Convener                                                                     Ac No: 6820702287   IFSC: IDIB000C007

 Gram Seva Sangh                                                                     Branch: Chamrajpet, Bengaluru

Satyagraha for Sacred Economy

OUR DEMANDS

ZERO TAX AND REFINANCING FOR SACRED ECONOMIES

AND

STEPS BY THE GOVERNMENT TO REJUVENATE SACRED ECONOMY ON A WAR FOOTING

For more information on the satyagraha: bit.ly/SSE_ENG

Use #SacredEconomy on social media

Centenarian Freedom Fighter H S Doreswamy addressing the satyagrahis

Environmentalist Vandana Shiva speaking to the Industrial workers 

Why the Satyagraha?

Gram Seva Sangh has undertaken a satyagraha for revival of the sacred economy. Sacred Economy is that which gives maximum number of jobs with minimum investment and with least damage to the environment. The sage Valmiki in his Ramayana speaks of this harmonious existence between humans and nature. 

The Monster Economy is losing

Today the Monster Economy has spread its tentacles all over the world. The nature and girth of this economy is indeed monstrous. Ironically, this economy is losing and it is defeating not only us, but its surroundings as well. This is the ideal time to defeat the monster economy and pave the way for sacred economy.

Should we allow the monsters to win?

No. But governments all over the world are desperately trying to save the monster economy with taxpayers’ money. When small and medium scale industries are in distress, when farmers, weavers, and artisans are turning away from their professions and migrating to cities, saving the monster economy is a crime.

Exclusion is not sacred

The very meaning of sacred is being changed. Segregation in the name of caste and gender discrimination is being promoted in the name of sacredness.

Our demand

Sacred Economy sectors should have zero tax, have refinancing options and the government should work towards rejuvenating this sector immediately. 

Fashion guru Prasad Bidapa hosts a fashion show of handmade fabrics on behalf of Satyagraha for Sacred Economy

Is it possible to measure sacred economy scientifically?

“This is an immeasurable demand. Even if the government makes up its mind to accede to the demand, it is not possible to do so.” This is the opinion of some people. However, this is not true. This goal can be achieved. I will explain below.

Sacred Economy has criteria

If there are handmade products and locally procured raw materials on one end, then there is completely automated and imported raw material on the other end. 

Swadeshi limit

We have also formulated a criterion for procuring raw materials that are swadeshi. If the raw material is procured within a hundred kilometers of the manufacturing unit, then it is swadeshi. Or else it will be treated as foreign. When Gandhiji announced Gram Swarajya, this limit was set at 8 kms or 5 miles.

60-40 ratio

The criterion for sacred economy has a 60-40 ratio. This means that a manufacturing sector should have 60 per cent human effort and 40 per cent automation. The same ratio applies to raw materials.

Panacea for the collapsing economy

All the sectors that meet these criteria should have zero tax (GST), have refinancing options, and receive measures to uplift the sector. The only way to resuscitate the collapsing economy is by adopting sacred economy. We should not forget that we are primarily a local economy compared to developed countries.

An example of implementation

Take the auto-manufacturing sector. A large number of organized workers are employed in this sector. For this very reason, the government has provided tax breaks amounting to crores and crores of rupees. Then why has it not seen the desired result?

This is because the workers are not present in large numbers in Maruti, Ford or Toyota assembly line. They work in smaller ancillary industries which are shutting down.  For example, the industrial estate of Peenya in Bengaluru North, which is Asia’s biggest, has started closing down.

A collective movement

Revive the Peenya’s of this nation, not the monster economies. In this manner, this is a joint movement of the unorganized sectors of rural areas and the organized sectors of the cities.

Why use the word sacred? 

There are several dimensions to the satyagraha. While the creation of jobs is one aspect, protection of nature and environment is second. The third is the social structure. The satyagraha is also fighting caste and gender discrimination. Segregation is not sacred, I strongly believe that only hard work is sacred.

Tradition and Saint movements

Whether it was the Kalyana Kranti led by Basavanna or the movement led by Saint Ravidas or by Saint Kabir etc..it is noteworthy that all of them also talked about creating jobs, protecting the environment and destroying the caste system. If work is worship (Kayakave Kailasa), then tanning and weaving are also forms of worship.

Not just the temple that is sacred

How are temples that deny entry to dalits sacred? Sant Ravidas who used to sit on the roadside is sacred to us. Buddha, who organized the dalits, Allama, Manteswami, Male Mahadeshwara and Junjappa are all sacred to us. For several years Gram Seva Sangh has conducted a padayatra to all sacred places and has now taken up the fight for sacred economy.

Are city workers not sacred?

They definitely are. The creation of jobs is not limited to the rural sector. Hence, we did not call this movement as Gram Swarajya. Our definition of sacred economy includes people in the city like women garment workers, pourakarmikas, factory workers etc who are in distress.

Is our demand too big?

Yes, our demand is vast. Were it to be smaller, it would have been easier. The problem today is large and hence our demand is large. Our fight for smaller demands has not yielded the desired result. The economic distress has swept our workers into untold hardship.

Do or Die

This is the age of Do or Die. This has led to the rise of a global movement called Extinction Rebellion, a peaceful civil disobedience movement. We are patient. Even if the administrators lose their patience, we will not lose it. The satyagraha will be peaceful.

 What is the politics behind this?

This movement is not a political movement. We do not think that any political solutions can be found for this problem. But this does not mean that we will keep political workers away from our movement.  We call upon all workers to join us and bear upon their political parties to rejuvenate sacred economy.

This is a moral fight

Our satyagraha aims to encourage people to stop increased consumption and buy sacred products. We also want to bring moral pressure upon the government to formulate laws to help sacred sectors. 

Who are we?

We are not a workers’ union. Nor do we desire to gain political power with our satyagraha. Gram Seva Sangh is a union of all organisations involved in constructive work. We are working towards ensuring jobs in the sacred sector and protecting our environment. If our goals are met, then we will go back to our individual constructive work. 

Reading of the Ramayana during the satyagraha with noted singer MD Pallavi , singer Naada Maninalkuru and author Prasanna (left)

Satyagraha is wherever you are

We are with you where you are. Your satyagraha should be harmonious and peaceful. If you lose your temper or use the podium to further the prospects of your political party, then we are not with you. We are with the people. We are with the environment.

What if others are angry with me?

Anger is a disease. If you do not cure it, then you will never see the truth. Swallow your anger and convince others to set aside their anger as well.

Retired Supreme Court Justice V Gopala Gowda sitting for the satyagraha

What is the stance of the government?

The governments talk a lot about creation of jobs and protecting the environment. But their actions are contrary to their words. They bail out big corporations. In turn, these corporations grow bigger and automate jobs. They are killings jobs and destroying the environment.

Greta Thunberg

This teenager from Sweden is asking politicians and industrialists worldwide, “Why are you destroying my future, why are you destroying the environment for your profit?” We have the same question, but more specific. We also say that sacred economy is the only way to rescue the collapsing environment.

Release of the satyagraha’s logo. (L to R) M D Pallavi, Nada Maninalkuru, Vijayamma and Basavaraj Patil.

ಸತ್ಯಾಗ್ರಹದ ಘೋಷಣೆಗಳು (Satyagraha Slogans)

ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ… ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ…!

ಹಸಿರನ್ನು ಹಸಿರಾಗಿ ಉಳಿಸಬಲ್ಲ ಕೆಲಸ ಕೊಡಿ…!

ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ… ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ…!

ಸಭ್ಯತೆಯನ್ನು ಸಭ್ಯವಾಗಿ ಉಳಿಸಬಲ್ಲ ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ..!

ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ… ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ…!

ಕೆಲಸಗಳನ್ನೇ ಕೊಲ್ಲದಿರುವಂತಹ ಕೆಲಸಗಳನ್ನು ಕೊಡಿ..!

ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ… ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ…!

ಗ್ರಾಮಗಳನ್ನು ನಾಶಮಾಡದಿರುವಂತಹ ಕೆಲಸ ಕೊಡಿ..!

ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ… ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ…!

ಭೂಮಿ ಬಿಸಿಯಾಗದಿರುವಂತಹ ಕೆಲಸ ಕೊಡಿ..!

ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ… ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ…!

ನೆಲ ಜಲ ಜೀವ ಜಂತುಗಳು ನರಳದಿರುವಂತಹ ಕೆಲಸ ಕೊಡಿ..!

ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ… ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ…!

ಜನರನ್ನು ಒಟ್ಟಾಗಿ ಉಳಿಸಬಲ್ಲ ಕೆಲಸ ಕೊಡಿ…!

ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ… ಕೆಲಸಕೊಡಿ…!

Actor Kishore and other satyagrahis at a traffic junction

Noted handloom activist Uzramma speaks to youngsters at the Fashion show organized by Prasad Bidapa.

Noted historian Ramachandra Guha with Prasanna during his indefinite fast

Come…

Let us sit on satyagraha…..

The satyagraha by Gandhi-Ambedkar

The satyagraha that unites cities and villages

The satyagraha by nature lovers

A peaceful satyagraha by women and one and all

It is satyagraha by the youth

The satyagraha is wherever you are……..

GRAM SEVA SANGH

gramsevasanghindia@gmail.com/+091 99800 43911

For more information on the satyagraha: bit.ly/SSE_KAN

Use #SacredEconomy on social media

Let’s Cross Over

#MonsterEconomy is dying, Let’s Cross Over…!

                                                                                                 – Prasanna

Let’s Cross Over

Monster Economy is dying. But we are unable to accept the fact. Like the children of a dying Grand-old-man, we have put the economy on ventilators; in an expensive hospital, called experts from all over the world, taken suggestions, even when those suggestions are contradictory to each other, and spent huge amounts of, scarce, national and international resource, on the treatment.

We are so completely involved with the dying monster that we don’t even want to go out of the emergency ward and see life as it is being lived. We do not want to notice for example, that even in the few weeks of the Corona Emergency the living world has already started looking livelier. The carbon emission levels have already started to come down and that the atmosphere has started showing signs of recovery. Nor for example do we, see animals (even wild ones) crossing over city streets, deserted and thus safe!

Instead, we want to go quickly back into the death ward, to pump more oxygen on to the dead lungs of the dying man! We are scared! Terribly, terribly, scared! The fact remains that we do not know how to manage without the monster! We do not know how to give up all the comforts that the old system offered! Unlimited travel, unlimited luxury, good looking malls, expensive hotels, connectivity and comfort!

But think! The wild animal crossing the street in a deserted city, whose picture we saw on the social media post, was crossing over and not intending to walk the street. We, on the contrary, have been walking the street, and want to continue to walk the street! We feel scared to crossover! We feel unsure on the natural ground; feel insecure with a hard working life! That’s our dilemma!

Look at it this way! The grand-old-man distributed his wealth unequally. His pet son (10% of the population) got a lion’s share, while the hard working children (90% of the population) had to scramble desperately for food even. The old man never cared for the old woman, meaning the nature! He is like the father in the Dostoevsky novel ‘Brothers Karamazov’. Of course, like in the novel, the monster economy has a few good qualities. For example, being driven by the machine, it looked after the business well. Let’s remember the good qualities, put a nice picture of it on the wall and cross over. In the novel one of the sons of the rascal father is called Alyosha Karamazov. He is a nice human being, almost a saint. We will have to follow his example, whether we like it or not!

Anyway there seems to be no choice. Why should we postpone the inevitable? If we pump more oxygen, the monster may breathe for a couple more years, but each such delay can put the living world to extinction. Let’s do Something.

  • Prasanna

Playwright, Theatre Director and Social Activist, Gram Seva Sangh

#Karonakuch A Letter

foreign, virus, air pollution
The poor most affected by Corona, through it’s been brought home by the rich

Dear Friend,

Day before yesterday, India shut down completely for a day, as a mark of its resolve to fight Corona virus. It was a tremendous show of solidarity. But, Corona is just one of the many crisis facing humanity. There is global warming, economic slowdown, communal strife, war mongering and, above all acute poverty, to name a few!

poor, corona scare, help, funds
India’s unfortunate that are most vulnerable and unprovided for… #KaronaKuch campaign

hungry, corono scare
Virus or no virus. She needs job and money

What do we do? What sort of Future World would we be giving to our children? Let us ponder over these questions peacefully. In any case, most of us will have very little else to do, apart from pondering, in the next few weeks.

“ stay from home” cannot help these people – give them food and money for their well being

It is interesting! Most of us think that somehow the root of all our problems lies in the moral ground and not on the material ground.

Let’s ponder, introspect and amend ourselves

As a system, I suppose, we became monstrous and neglected the moral ground for a little too long. Whatever developments that we did over the last two centuries, we all know, benefitted only ten percent population. Pushing the other ninety percent people, nature and animal life, into the hell hole of deprivation or degradation! May be, we are being punished for this! Yes, punished by nature, or by god, if you want to call the moral authority that.

Temples, mosques and churches have also tried, are still trying, but haven’t succeeded in remedying the situation. I think the crisis needs a much larger and a more united social push. Such a push is what is called by some people as, secular-social-push. Of course religion is not excluded from such an exercise.

So, let’s all push! But before we do that, let’s discuss the issue first. May be on the social media platforms (Virus free!). And come up with concrete suggestions, such as, simple living, sharing, caring, etc. But, think concretely; think differently, before you suggest different sectors! Kindly use #karonakuch in all your postings, even amongst yourselves.

– Prasanna                                                                                                    24.Mar.2020         (Playwrite, Theater Director & Social Activist, Gram Seva Sangh ,               Bengaluru)

Gram Seva Sangh
Email ID: gramsevasanghindia@gmail.com | Mobile: 9980043911 |  www.gramsevasangh.org
Flat #102, Shesha Nivas, 1st Block, 1st Main,
Thyagarajanagar, Bengaluru-560028

#KaronaKuch campaign

Corona has made the poor more distressed

relief for poor
Gram Sangh Seva’s #KuckKaro campaign

Dear Friends,

Gram Seva Sangh has launched a Social Media Campaign #KaronaKuch meaning Do Something.  This campaign attempts to draw the attention of the people of this country and also the Government, about the plight of the poor people during the last few months economic recession. Especially after the outbreak of Corona Scare.

Do something, poor, KaronaKuch Campaign
Majority of India’s poor segment need funds and assistance #KaronaKuch Campaign

KaronaKuch campaign, poverty, Corono scare
Do something for the needy #KaronaKuch campaign

We would very much like you to take part in the campaign by sharing these messages attached to all your friends and post in your social media platforms with #KaronaKuch

jobs, laborers, unemployment, no money and earnings
No jobs for poor with MGNREGA stopped. How will the daily wage earners survive??

unemployment, wages, laborers, farmers, peasants
Now no employment and earning for the poor with MGNREGA stopped. Government should fund the needy in this Corona crisis.

Any further ideas you have about this campaign, please do not hesitate to share with us. So that those ideas can be incorporated into the campaign, wherever possible.

Note: Try to tag @PMOIndia and other peoples representatives and influencers also, if possible.

Commercial success at the cost of destroying a river – Tiruppur’s Garment Business Case Story

 

Noyyal River - Tirupur

A Business model that damages Ecology

Tiruppur’s cloth range are not environmentally sustainable.

 

South India’s Tiruppur City is an example of the environmental damages, non-sustainable cloth and garment manufacturing processes can cause to a City’s precious rivers and water resources. This is a case in point of how business and economic progress took place at a huge cost of causing severe environmental degradation.

Noyyal River sacrificed for having the textile industry flourish!!

Tiruppur is a famous centre for it’s cotton knitwear , particularly cotton t-shirts. During the 1990’s, Tiruppur’s economy in terms of employment and export earnings thrived due to the cotton knitwear industry. The City’s garment businesses have got many global fashion retailers as customers. However, the process of manufacturing these garments involved bleaching and chemical dyeing which polluted the Tiruppur City’s Noyyal river which was once beautiful.

Contamination and pollution of Noyyal River -Tiruppur

 

Farmers lose out with their lands getting degraded

Farmers occupation hit at Tiruppur - India

 

Subsequently over the years, the Noyyal river became a toxic sewer and with the river’s chemically contaminated waters creeping into the groundwater table , a major natural source of clean water was destroyed and the water became unfit to be used for most of the agricultural purposes. All farmers in and around the district that depended on the waters of the Noyyal river for irrigation were negatively impacted.

Noyyal River - Tiruppur,India

 

 Productive Farming prevalent before the entities began their contamination

Before the dyeing and bleaching era existed prior to the 1990’s the Noyyal river which was clean supported the farming community as farmers grew a variety of crops – rice, sugarcane, groundnut, sesame, turmeric, beetroot, green chilli, tomato, cotton, tobacco, banana etc. Now the dirty, toxic contaminated waters of Noyyal river have destroyed farming occupations as the only crops that can be grown using these now toxic waters are coconuts and maize predominately used in dairy and livestock farming.

Unhealthy yield of coconut - Tiruppur, India

 

Even the coconuts that are grown now are of deteriorated quality looking small and unhealthy.

Farmer earnings now hit rock bottom!!

Villages that are even 70km downstream from Tiruppur are negatively impacted due to contamination of the Noyyal river with farmers making paltry earnings, as their agricultural lands and occupations are ruined, all due to these harmful effluents released by Tiruppur’s dye and bleaching entities!!

Tiruppur’s residents lose a precious source of water

Weeds, Distroyed Noyyal River, Tiruppur, India

Besides the farmers, resident people too are negatively affected with their local water resource contaminated and wasted by Tiruppur’s environmentally destructive textile manufacturing practices.

Let’s remember the water footprint of making one cotton t-shirt

Every cotton t-shirt has a water footprint with 1000’s of litres of water required to make it, beginning from growing the cotton crop, then processing of the cloth and wastage of water due to pollution involved in this process as well. Each cloth wastes, a natural resource that these days is critically scant.

 It’s possible to apply natural dyes for clothes – Sustainable Alternative

Charaka naturally dyed handloom clothes

 

This need not have been the story if Tiruppur did manufacture garments in an environmentally friendly, ethical way. For instance, Charaka, a women’s co-operative located at Bhimanakone Village in the Western Ghats region of Southern India, manufactures handloom garments using natural dyes.

Natural Dyes extracted from plant varieties

These natural dyes are extracted from crops and plants available in the forests of Western Ghats; like arecanut, pomegranate, jackwood, madder root for rich colours and hues of brown, red and yellow.

 Handmade clothes made with care employing rural locals

Designs made on a naturally dyed handloom cloth using Block Printing technique

Charaka was successful in providing employment and livelihoods to women of the region. Such garments are manufactured with care for the environment and done using labour employing their hand skills in weaving naturally dyed garments using handlooms.

Fabrics are woven using handloom employing labour

Fabrics are woven using handloom employing labour

 

Additional value is added to the garments with designs made on them with elegant hand embroidery and block printing, where wood blocks are used to make designs on the garments.

Charaka's elegant hand embroidery on their naturally dyed handloom clothes

Ultimate in Sustainability

Such a business model is sustainable, it employs local resources from raw materials to labour, gives jobs to rural people and there is a special value because these products are handmade, eco-friendly.

 We can make sustainable choices in making purchases!!

A takeaway for us in all this, is that when we buy clothes, we choose clothes that are ethically made, clothes that are made without polluting rivers without destroying livelihoods of farmers. This is sustainable fashion.

Charaka range of eco sustainable dresses for men

 

There is more value for a cloth that’s made with care, using hand skills of local rural people, than mass produced soulless machine made mass produced clothes.

Charaka range of eco sustainable dresses for women.

India we all know used to be popular with Khadi cloth business as well, it supported the village economy providing jobs to people of rural India. We have the choice of making conscious sustainable choices, valuing environment, labour and creating a positive change by buying clothes that helps in giving a living to local people, providing them respect and dignity for their valuable work.

All photos related to the Noyyal River taken from the following wire article
https://thewire.in/environment/australian-open-tiruppur-dyeing-bleaching-groundwater-contamination-agriculture-noyyal-river
Photo credits to Neetha Deshpande

 

The deteriorated Economy of India experiencing Low Growth and Unemployment

Declining Economy

 

 

These past recent months, there have been talks of weather India is staring at an Economic Crisis. The Indian Government, have tried to tone down this matter by saying that India is just going through a slowdown which is natural as a result of generalized Global Economic slowdown that is affecting even the developed economies of USA, UK,Japan and other countries around the world. However, latest data released for the 2nd quarter of 2019(July to Sept period) has given us clear data that indicate that the rate of growth of the Indian Economy has not just declined drastically but majority of the India’s population have got poorer, are consuming less and are unemployed.

Economic Crisis Situation

 

Wire news report on Indian Economic Performance 2019 Q2 Period
https://thewire.in/video/watch-the-wire-business-report-understanding-the-q2-gdp-slump

Overall growth of Indian Economy is poor reflected by Sub 5% GDP growth

GDP growth has been just 4.5% which is the lowest since 2013 Quarter 4 period. This means that the growth experienced by Indian Economy to provide jobs to it’s more than a billion population right now is just not enough!!!

Declining Economy

 Declining Growth Rates of the Major Sectors of the Indian Economy

In Q2 Manufacturing Sector has grown by 2.6%, Construction sector by 3.2% and Agricultural Sector has grown by a really dismal 2.1% , all these sectors are experiencing a decline in growth rates in comparison to Quarter 1 period of 2019.

 Industrial Production is at a low

Industrial and Manufacturing Activity have contracted as indicated by contraction of the core sectors of Indian Economy by 5.8% with a decline in production of crude oil, natural gas, cement, coal production, electricity, steel etc.

This indicates that there is less demand for these essential products required by Construction industries and manufacturing units for production and infrastructure building activities, due to them not doing much in their building and production activities.

 Investment in the Economy has grown by less than 1%

Investment in India by business entities was less than 1% in this period with the investment rate gone down to 28%, meaning no companies and business entities are confident to invest in India at present. This is despite the measures taken by the current Government to induce industries and companies to invest more with the Government having exercised its monetary policy of Repo rRate cuts so that industries and companies get cheap loans for investment purposes.

Besides cutting of interest rates, India’s Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaram also gave tax reductions to Corporate Entities amounting to 37,000 crore, even then investment has not picked up. Generally, if the above measures don’t work, it could only mean that there other issues ailing the Indian Economic Environment that needs to be fixed, for investment and growth to pick up.

 Unemployment, income inequalities and increase in Poverty

More worrying truths that are ugly emerge as well as rural distress has only increased, along with 7% increase in unemployment with their consumption having come down by 2% according to the 2018 leaked data of National Statistics Office (NSO).

Poverty has increased as well, with income inequalities having grown at vulgar proportions!! The majority of the section of India’s population who are in the bottom of the pyramid, are only getting poorer day by day.

 Retail inflation with low growth in economy and unemployment a worry!!

In the months of November and December, Retail inflation had risen to
5.54% and 7.35% with increase in prices of essential food items – milk, vegetables, egg, fish and meat. A majority of India’s population are low income population, along with low growth in job opportunities and unemployment, rise in prices of essential food products will have them not able to even afford food for basic nutrition!!

Outlook news on India’s retail inflation
https://www.outlookindia.com/website/story/business-news-retail-inflation-jumps-to-735-in-december-2019-against-novembers-554/345659

The Structural issue in the current Indian Economic System

There have been discussions relating to whether this Economic slowdown is cyclical or structural, meaning are there inherent problems prevalent in the Indian Economic System that are the reasons for this economic low growth or is this just a natural economic cycle?. The answer to this is yes, there are structural issues crippling the Indian Economy. Since years the GDP growth of Indian Economy only grew because of profits made by the Corporate sector, but a large section of India remained poor and India’s rural economy has been destroyed.

Wire’s News article – 
India’s former chief statistician, Pronab Sen on India’s economic situation
https://thewire.in/video/watch-india-economy-karan-thapar-pronab-sen-interview

Farmer suicides since years because of Poverty

Agricultural Sector that comprises of farmers and labourers that provide food security to the entire Indian country have never procured a decent remuneration to make a living even though the goods that they produce have a permanent long standing demand as everyone of us are consumers of food materials for our survival, health and vitality!! Add to this they often are exploited and stressed due to the pressure of them needing to pay back loans, due to which many have been committing suicides.

The Workers and Labourers have always been paid very poorly

The workers and labourers in factories and industries are the real producers, but they never had job security even though their employers like big car companies, tyre companies, Construction companies and others make profits using their services, their wages also have been unfairly low when compared to the value they added to the Economic system. This was the case even when India experienced an economic boom, when Manufacturing and Construction companies were expanding and making profits.

https://www.networkideas.org/featured-articles/2018/08/factory-workers-in-india/

 India’s Rural Sector been destroyed

Traditionally, India’s rural Sector provided jobs to people in occupations like handicraft making, handloom cloth business, there were fishermen, farmers, small vendors, hawkers, khadhi weavers etc. These jobs were supporting giving livelihoods to lakhs of people in the area without the need for them to take that difficult step of migrating to urban areas and struggling to make a living there. However, that sector has been neglected by the Indian Government, as a result India’s poverty levels remain high.

SMEs are important as they provide employment to many

Small and Medium Enterprise segment (SMEs), that comprise of small and medium sized businesses do provide employment to a large population, but that segment has largely been ignored in the current Economic System which has favoured only capitalist entities in India!!

 India’s GDP could be more if the neglected sectors are developed and grown

India’s GDP would definitely have been better if all it’s sectors of Economy were nurtured and attended to by the Indian Economic System. So, farmers, weavers, textile workers, labourers, workers, fishermen, small and medium enterprise constituents would have earned enough to lead a dignified life. Then with enough money in their hands, their purchasing power would be constant enough to keep them demanding essential goods and services – food, electricity, healthcare, education services and other goods required by them which would have a positive and real increase in India’s GDP.

India’s prosperity only possible if the neglected sectors are revived

It is high time India becomes that country where poverty is eradicated and everybody has enough to lead a decent basic standard of living. India’s Economic system of production has been unjust to the majority of its population involved in occupations mentioned before (agriculture and farming, traditional textile industry comprising khadi and handloom garments, small scale industry constituents, fishermen, factory and industry workers and labourers, hawkers, handicraft artisans, weavers and more) .

Here is a write up on how the small sector players actually employ people – rural women and even disabled youth – 

https://gramsevasangh.org/2019/11/13/sacred-economy-in-the-real-world-and-its-positive-impacts/

India’s Banking Sector crippled with NPAs

Another, really troubling fact is that Big Corporates and individuals have cheated many Public Sector Banking institutions with non-repayment of loans and gotten away with it for a long time. This has affected the common man, as when there are bad debts and non-performing assets(NPAs), the hard earned money of the bank’s depositors are unsafe, with the bank not having liquidity to pay back it’s depositors with all that the amount lost as unrecovered loans.

Outlook Magazines story on Indians fear in having their saving in Public Sector Banks
https://www.outlookindia.com/magazine/story/business-news-is-your-money-safe-why-indians-are-losing-their-trust-in-banks/302302

One of the latest cases is of Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative (PMC) Bank not able to recover Rs 4355 crore loan which it lent to Housing Development & Infrastructure Ltd. Due to this, there were concerns on PMC’s money liquidity availability and Reserve Bank Of India (RBI) intervened imposing restrictions on Depositors on withdrawing their own money from the bank. It has to be noted that mostly the common man with small earnings are affected here with their years of hard invested savings being insecure in a public sector bank.

Now figures show that Bank Credit lending has come down by 88%, banks are not comfortable to lend to companies like before in fear of NPAs increasing as these companies may not be able to pay the loan back in the prevailing economic climate which is not looking promising.

India’s Economic System favouring mostly the Big Corporate Entities been harmful

The above case is just one example of bad loans, owners of profit making companies like Kingfisher’s Vijay Mallaya and jewel company businessman Nirav Modi have gotten away from India earlier without paying back the loans and advances they secured amounting to crores of money. All this definitely shows that India’s Banking Sector is not healthy which is required for the good financial health of the Economy. This also reflects how big companies and businessmen get easy money from the system, that’s not the case for small sectors discussed before, even though the small sector has potential to employ a lot of population lifting them out of poverty and hardship.

India’s earlier GDP growth numbers due to economic boom benefiting only a small section

Now, all these problems existed for a long while, but India sustained some growing GDP numbers as IT companies and other constituents in the capitalist system employed a small section of people who earned degrees and worked hard. India’s GDP growth, was definitely one sided it never reflected the prosperity of the Nation as a whole.

Growth of Nation cannot happen just by encouraging sales of cars, aiding the automobile industry to grow, or sale of real estate that’s also a costly market, or being happy with earnings that come from air travel, or gold jewelry sales anymore. Government must cater to the requirements of small players rather than having India’s GDP grow by stimulating demand of the upper class segments on products and services of big companies, industries and economic powers. This is definitely a monster economy not giving a level playing field to small players!!

 Demonetisation worsened India’s Economy

Lately, India has further fallen deep into the economic crisis mess because of certain policies of the BJP Government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, namely Demonetisation and GST tax regime.

Demonetisation in November 2016 had the Government declare old issues of 500 Rs and 2000 Rs notes to cease as acceptable legal tender to be replaced by new version of those currency notes.

Demonetisation, resulted in small entities in neglected sectors not have money liquidity to sustain business, overtime they were forced to shut down and lakhs of people lost jobs. Added to this, came the Goods and Services tax (GST), this magnified difficulties for the small, neglected sectors discussed before, as they could not pay tax and this increased their distress. Ideally, small and medium Industries and businesses should be exempted from tax until they mature with constant earnings and prosperity.

 Corruption eating away precious money…

Much more can be said on India’s Economy, especially how precious money is lost in corruption wastages. Even though India Metro Cities are saturated with unsustainable and unplanned development, more projects that are not required are introduced like the needless flyovers,skywalks, dam building on free flowing rivers and other things. Often, money gets allocated for those projects, and corruption has officials pocket money. Again, big companies that get tender for the project get fatter making money out of it. However, no development happens in rural areas which lacks basic roads, healthcare and educational facilities. There is no balanced all around development that would benefit the entire Nations with prosperity and peace.

 India needs to sort this situation else it’s going to be a prolonged suffering

A must mention is resulting deterioration in environmental conditions in India with Government having allowed big economic entities to pollute rivers, cut trees, reduce forest cover for business projects of big companies and industries.

India is definitely in a mist of a big economic and environmental crisis, hopefully, Government at least encourages all the sectors that became marginalized as they were neglected to develop now, so farmers, weavers, textile workers, artisans, labourers, small entrepreneurs, small and medium enterprise businesses workers get to earn a living and many millions of population get employed and skilled working in these sectors.