The Indian Infrastructural Bottleneck: Frustration for the Green Revolution

The Indian Infrastructural Bottleneck: Frustration for the Green Revolution

Paul Fischer


Teaching Assistant Jeremy Romanul

Professor Katlyn Morris

The Indian Infrastructural Bottleneck: Frustration for the Green Revolution

The success of the Green Revolution was a moment of relief for humanitarian efforts across the globe as advances in agricultural technology allowed for the end to world hunger to momentarily be in sight. Even though global food production possibilities could still feed almost twice as many people as forecasts from previous decades expected, infrastructural bottlenecks in economic market systems continue to contribute to regional and domestic shortages. The globalized agrofood system will be examined locally as narrow interpretations of the right to life are disregarded to embrace the actuality of international treaties, covenants and commitments responsible parties including corporate entities and national governments and the implications for a larger view of effective solutions.

Use of Eastern India as a regional example of effective solutions in need of committed commodity control and redistribution will be an example of food systems in food sovereignty and food security (Morris, 101). One fundamental part of food security is the structural investment and the sources it comes from. The efficacy of public investment to open up new farmland and to allow development of private endeavors has been hotly contested. While it may appear at a first glance that private investment is growing at an adequate pace to address hunger issues in the region, microeconomic analysis has shown that in fact globalization and trade factors confound the apparent trend, and these stimuli offset the failure in certain regions of private investment to cover all of the costs associated with an optimal economic outcome (Rao, 1944).

In Latin America a movement known as La Via Campesina, characterized by “local autonomy, local markets, local production-consumption cycles, energy and technological sovereignty and farmer-to-farmer networks” (Morris, 145), has accomplished many of the goals that would sustain the goals of food sovereignty efforts in Eastern India. The difference between these and larger-scale efforts to provide adequate funding lies in the intensity of land use; increases in food supplied to local populations are estimated in the regions where the peasant and small-farmer organization is active by between two hundred and one thousand percent. Macro-steps to accomplish the same goals have been stunted in India after decades of positive change. That is not to argue the primacy of the status quo over the precedent, but instead the inferiority of the status quo to the optimal scenario of secure food resources in the region under discussion.

Recapturing the data which determines the co-ordination between public and private sector and reallocates the business which was eaten up during the rapid expansion of global trade during the 90s reveals a very close relationship between the two forms of investment. It can be taken in turn, then, that continued erosion of the sources of public funding could lead to a critical minimum that sees all forms of investment collapse into failure in the region. In order to avoid this outcome multiple steps have been taken, best classified as autonomous adaptation (Morris, 115). The transient nature of the steps which have been taken to establish such food sovereignty predicate a distinction from planned operations. The natural conclusion of whether the gains which have been made in other regions are applicable to Eastern India requires attention towards energy policy to be evaluated for practical application.

The two primary factors can be used to gauge the efficacy of measures are comprised of productivity and poverty alleviation. In these measures energy security can be seen as having a similar tradeoff identified in terms of agricultural functions (Rao, 1947). A distinct discrepancy between sustainable technological progress can be found between regions affected by excessive ratios of private investment to public investment. While some technologies, notably buses and clean water pumps, are beneficial to the environment in the region, many others are not and may not develop adequately in regions without adequate public investment.

Less intensive agricultural development also means greater overall land use, a premise that leads to Protected Area evictions and other negative outcomes or external costs for the public sector. One way to optimize outcomes would be to improve the praxis between engineers and the general public (Morris, 183). This is a way to address the examples identified by microanalysis of regions while also expanding the technical skills and profit margins of private interests into regions buoyed by the benefits of trade more fully. It can also address potential degradation of the land from overly intensive agriculture: a prime example of agricultural degradation can be found in the declining fish stocks of the Tonle Sap region in Cambodia (Morris, 185). That also demonstrates the inter-connectivity between energy and agricultural security.

The implications for agriculture do not finish with agricultural security as a result of greater facilitation between engineers and energy interests, but also extend into direct benefits for energy security as a result of intensive agriculture as well. While biofuel is not recognized as an effective solution to energy problems, in some areas development of effective mixtures can make the difference between costly shipments of fuel and near or complete energy independence. Investments in agricultural technology in India have lead to anticipated blends of 20% biodiesel and bioethanol fuels though that technology is expected to increase food imports by 5%, and food prices by .2% in accordance with the elasticity of the market. This will give a new meaning to burning the crops. More importantly the expected price of fuel is expected to change by a significant nearly 5%, making the overall equation a massive winner in the regions which benefit from the new technology, priced at around 20 billion dollars a year of private sector research investment currently (Gunatilake).

The tradeoffs and rewards which are offered by economic cases need to be handled by experts on an individual basis. Corporations and nations no longer have a choice to make mistakes in this field. In order to see the region transform for social justice and for agricultural and energy security, the effects must be taken as a sum of economic and environmental goals that neither macro approaches embodied in Eastern India nor micro approaches seen in Latin America properly address alone. Together they produce a veritably optimal outcome.


Gunatilake, H., Roland-Holst, D., & Sugiyarto, G. (2014). Energy security for India: Biofuels, energy efficiency and food productivity. Energy Policy, 65, 761-767.

Morris, Katlyn S. (2015). International Environmental Studies. Cognella, University of Vermont.

Rao, C. H. (1998). Agricultural growth, sustainability and poverty alleviation: recent trends and major issues of reform. Economic and Political Weekly, 1943-1948.

Indian Protected Area Evictions: Contemporary Shortages in Housing and Water Supplies

Indian Protected Area Evictions: Contemporary Shortages in Housing and Water Supplies

Paul Fischer


Kaitlyn Morris

Indian Protected Area Evictions: Contemporary Shortages in Housing and Water Supplies

        From the first years in which Indian Protected Areas were established chronic problems with overcrowding and resource scarcity have created tangible difficulties for residents and authorities in such regions as have been allocated to be set aside. A veritable consequence of these obstacles to peaceable development has been one of the most tragic of the common issues facing populations. Protected areas have become inhabited by not millions but tens and hundreds of millions of people periodically, degrading both the population forced to take shelter in such wilderness as well as producing a domestication of the those lands, comprising the incidental benefits and direct objectives of the land. This is not an issue limited to India, but one which extends across Southeast Asia. Various solutions have been proposed and carried out, notably wide scale Protected Area Evictions (PAEs), and recent attempts have been made in an academic fashion to describe and quantify the scale of the degradation as a human rights and environmental catastrophe.

It will be helpful to use water shortages in order to examine PAEs as an extended function of the rights to water with many of the same trade-offs as well as potential solutions. Causes for rising water prices can range from government eviction programs in India to water privatization in Bolivia (Letnar Cernic, 317). Profit is not always a motive, and a non-governmental organization, FIAN, contaminated a river in Peru (316). In such cases the role of blame-bearer becomes of a greater focus, as many corporate or non-governmental interests wish to see governments take sole responsibility for the actions of corporations on their sovereign territory (332-3).

PAEs focus primarily on governmental involvement in the shortage of resources, in India that means land. Frequently, however, there are other acute necessities which are being met ranging from food in the rainforests to water in the desert. The involvement of corporations can occur in two ways, as a result of pollution which denies those around them water or when the price of water rises as a result of their activities, which also denies the inhabitants access to clean water. It can then be said that there are two ways that people have a right to enjoy access to water. These include entitlements and freedom (Cernik, 315). The UN has determined that freedom from micro-organisms and sufficient water for survival may be an entitlement, but in order to have freedom in access, humans must also have enough water to pursue irrigational, or other means of power consequent to the access.

It will be helpful then to return to the PAEs as an extended function of the rights to water with many of the same trade-offs as well as potential solutions. Causes for rising water prices can range from government eviction programs in India to water privatization in Bolivia (Cernic, 317). Unlike the example of the Indian PAEs, where national and international law match, the national laws on access to water in many areas has no resemblance to the freedoms and entitlements which are outlined and enforced by the UN. One solution successful amongst British corporations which can be played out on an international scale as well, is to play the dynamics of the balance of power by recognizing the external obligations of a business and ensuring that the obligations of the corporation to human rights are also met by the competing rivals of businesses responsible for the action (341).

        In particular there are unsuccessful solutions which have been examined as component to the issues within that proposed by proponents of PAEs. To understand the problem within Indian forest reserves, it is first necessary to look at the housing crisis as a function of modern human rights extant and protected in the Constitution of India in a way not completed in other countries until much more recently. This can be seen in urban areas such as Mumbai in which crowded masses produce a one billion dollar market for landowners at a massive cost to the individual rights internationally guaranteed which include “resources, capability, security, and power” each of which are explicitly stated as part of the full range of human rights from adequate housing to access to information by Amnesty International (Hohmann, 153). In India a Supreme Court Justice re-emphasized this basic human right as integral to the expansion of minimum living spaces from 225 feet per person to 400 (Hohmann, 162). Modern legislation in other countries, while less fundamental to an understanding of social and legal structures in those countries, also has created a basis by which inhabitants have a right to both rehabilitation and compensation in the event landlords in these slum areas are found to be guilty of property negligence.

        The fact that these questions are coming to the forefront of a critical effort by citizens is indicative of a scale in tragic outcomes which has not been faced in modern history that is encapsulated in the city of Mumbai. There is a natural clash between the well-heeled citizenry who hope to bring Mumbai towards becoming a world-class city and the nearly 75% who live in slums (Hohmann, 136). That is a fact which is demonstrated by firstly, the population density statistic of the 400 sq. kilometer city that holds 18 million people, of whom one third live in an area of slums approximately the size of Manhattan, or 20 sq. kilometers. Urban solutions which hold promise for use in National Forests are the rehabilitation and compensation of inhabitants rather than treating these inhabitants as illegal anyway. Another is the possibility is the enforcement of international legal standards which consider the forced relocation of the poor to be a prima facie violation of their rights of habitation (Hohmann, 172).




Letnar Cernic, Jernej. “Corporate obligations under the human right to water.” (2011).

Hohmann, Jessie M. “Visions of Social Transformation and the Invocation of Human Rights in Mumbai: The Struggle for the Right to Housing.” Yale Human Rights and Development (2010).

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