South Asian Journal of Socio-political Studies

VOL.XIX NO.1 July - December 2018

The Afghan Turmoil: New Policy of the US and India’s Options

Dr. Vinod Khobragade, Department of Socilogy & Political Sceince, Dayalbagh Educational Institute, Dayalbagh, Agra The friendly ties between India and Afghanistan run deep into the past and India has legitimate interests in Afghanistan. Besides, Pakistan and Afghanistan, as bordering neighbours, also shared bonds of culture, ethnicity, language, and religion. Therefore, in view of securing the interests of regional peace and stability, India should grab an opportunity by expressing its willingness to work in tandem with all including Pakistan to pacify and stabilize the turmoil situation in Afghanistan. And for the better result in the region for all, India needs to dispel with the notion aiming to marginalize and influence Pakistan by increasingly involving in Afghanistan. India’s full-fledged engagement with Afghanistan, without doubt, would increase Pakistan’s suspicions regardless of who India is working with in Afghanistan. This is the major impediment that India should think of dealing to. Moreover, the Trump administration has not given any official to-do list to India for Afghanistan. India’s success in Afghanistan is hinges on more constructive and positive role of all the states involved in. India should shoulder the major responsibility not to allow Afghanistan to turn into a battlefield for the great power rivalry.

Preparing the North East Region of India for an Effective “Act East Policy”

Dr. P. Lazarus Samraj, Professor, Department of Politics & International Studies, Pondicherry University and James Ralte, Doctoral Fellow, Department of Politics & International Studies, Pondicherry University The growth of a nation in the international politics as well as regional politics is to a large extent depends on the foreign policy it envisages in pursuance of its own national interest. The Indian government’s Act East policy is one of those foreign policies that has been envisaged way back in the 90s as Look East Policy, which aimed at forging and establishing a closer ties and relations with India’s eastern neighbour like Myanmar and the ASEAN countries. This attempt of India in establishing a closer and concrete relation with Myanmar and the ASEAN countries through the Look East Policy has been found wanting in many aspects as with the passage of almost 22 years there had been very little achievement on various fronts. Thus, in the year 2014 November, at the 12th ASEAN-India Summit and 9th East Asian Summit held at Naypidaw in Myanmar, Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India formally enunciated the Act Policy, which is a redefinition of the Look East Policy of 1991 aiming at forging economic, political, cultural and security cooperation with Myanmar and ASEAN countries. And for this the development and restructuring of the Northeast region and its people should be a priority for the Indian government, as the region with its strategic location and the cultural proximities of the people with the populations of Myanmar is the gateway for looking east and for actively engaging with ASEAN eastern countries. In this context, the paper underlines the importance of empowering the NE people with modern high tech education, providing them entrepreneurial and skill development training by involving higher educational institutions. At present, only Assam is having an IIT and the rest of the NE regions are neglected regions in terms of technical education. Before starting the smart cities it is necessary to start technical educational institutions to achieve the Make in India vision of the present Union government. For that, it is necessary to take initiative to build confidence building measures by giving assurance to the NE people that their cultural identity will be protected in spite of celebrating pluralism. The highly popular English education may be helpful for the policy makers to reach the unreached. Moreover, NE higher education institutions can take initiatives to start courses on understanding the East Asia regions’ culture, business environment, language, sensitivities and other economic priorities and opportunities, so that the people of NE would serve as bridges and change agents for a better India-ASEAN cooperation. Above all, the Central government with the cooperation of the state governments should take the initiative to address the causes of insurgency to achieve a peaceful NE, to move towards a pro-active Look East and Act East Policy. This paper intends to analyse the important areas the central and state governments should concentrate for winning the people of NE without alienating them, before aggressively pursuing the frontier expansion, for any external aggressive policy without the wholehearted cooperation and involvement of the local population will be a disaster.

China’s Belt and Road Initiative’ - Why Gender Matters!

Meena Bilgi, Doctoral Fellow, Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University, Gandhinagar, Gujarat Asia is one of the most prosperous regions in today’s world in terms of economic outlook, yet it is still highly heterogeneous with regards to socio-economic development, with major differences in economic growth patterns, industrialization, urbanization, natural resource management and social welfare. This remains a core challenge to further the development of the entire region. The Chinese vision document on China’s ‘One Belt’ and ‘One Road’ lays out five layers of connectivity: policy, physical, economic, financial and human. Among these, infrastructure construction is the dominant feature of the New Silk Road. As this initiative is likely to accelerate economic growth of the countries involved, perhaps no developing country would like to turn away from any infrastructure development opportunities financed by the Chinese. The infrastructure development will involve use huge amount of construction materials: concrete, steel, chemicals and base metals mostly around transport and energy: roads, bridges, gas pipelines, ports, railways, power plants, airports etc. where hundreds and thousands of workers both men and women will be involved. However, the challenges and risk facing the implementation of this initiative is the political and security, economic and financial, environmental and social risks. One of the major concerns is ‘how public interest activities such as education, health care, poverty reduction, biodiversity and ecological protection for benefit of general public would be encouraged and planned’ and ‘how the three pillars of sustainable development would be linked into actionable and people-friendly proposals? The people in the affected areas are not one homogeneous group, but are from various social groups that include men and women - young and old, poorer and better off, and so forth. Extensive documentation is available on meaningful participation of local women and men across social groups and how the infrastructure and economic development projects have improved project effectiveness, efficiency, and sustainability. The importance of incorporating gender issues are not only to reach out to women, but to also to all the beneficiaries that are targeted by the investment. The business case for addressing gender issues in infrastructure development and cross sector projects requires tailoring services focused on the needs and preferences of both men and women. In many sectors, women and men, poor and better-off may have different needs, preferences, and opinions regarding services, and they may be affected differently by the lack of goods and services and benefits thereof. Men and women are more likely to pay for services that match their preferences and this helps sustainability. Aside from this instrumental value of empowerment, we need to make sure that women and girls walk with dignity, feel respected and live without fear that are intrinsically valuable to all societies. This initiative therefore needs to designate policies that navigate enterprises to fully understand and abide by environmental laws, regulations and related environmental and social responsibility and guidelines of participating countries as well learn from best practices from their own industry. Enterprises could make endeavours to engage with local stakeholders (e.g. local communities, labour organizations, Environmental organizations, media and many others) through open, regular, transparent information sharing and disclosure processes. This way, this project will be seen as a source of mutually beneficial development and not a plan of Chinese control and dominance. This paper therefore thrust on an opportunity for BRI to act as a thought and practice leader in this arena, and to build upon its commitment to implement a stronger gender equality focus and people to people bond in its work. More so because the project is a large-scale inter-country and an integrated model and a symphony composed of participating countries,

Secured by Marginalization in a VolatileSituation: Transforming Negative Peace to Positive Peace

Dr. Subhasis Bhadra, Associate Professor and Head, Department of Social Work, Central University of Rajasthan Marginalization causes persecution, violation of human rights of the marginalised section. Ghettoization of Muslims as a matter of political polarization following multiple incidences of communal conflict in Gujarat has been reflected in the settlement pattern in Ahmadabad city. Mostly the minority dominated areas are clearly being marked with borders (like walls, streets, long empty land etc). These physical borders are loaded with feelings of hate, rejection, stigmatization by the majority community, in the contrary the minority community identifies the border with feeling of security, power, establishing identity. These differences are surly against establishing pluralistic attitude and harmonious living. This paper is examining marginalisation that is largely self-imposes, to ensure identity and security in daily life. The case of Gujarat riots 2002 and marginalisation of the Muslim community in different riots affected cities and villages are discussed as the author was closely associated with rehabilitation of the survivors and peace building projects. In any volatile situation, the process of establishing peace by active socio-political wills and engagements through psychosocial support, social engagement are the skills of social workers to generate the spark of change and bring learning about “how marginalization to ensure security” could be transformed in positive peace.

Relations among Nations at a Time of Whirlpool

Dr. V.D. Radhakrishnan, Asst. Professor, Post Graduate and Research Department of Political Science, Sree Narayana College, Kollam, Kerala Relations between India and China have been characterized by boarder disputes, resulting in three military conflicts-the China-India war of 1962, the Chola incident in 1967, and the Sino-Indian skirmish at Doklam area near the Sikkim sector where Indian troops along with Bhutanese army foiled Chinese People’s Liberation Army’s attempts to encroach on a disputed enclave in early 2017. The Chinese have responded by suspending the Kailash-Mansarovar Yatra through the Nathu La Pass and warned India to not forget “historical lessons” from the 1962 war.29 In addition to this, there is economic relations between the two countries that have at times led to strained relations. Modern relations between the two countries began in 1950 when India was the first among the countries to end formal relations with the Republic of China (Taiwan) and recognized the People’s Republic of China as the legitimate government of Mainland China. Today the two countries are cooperating on a range of international issues like trade, climate change and reformulation of the global financial order, simultaneously, trying to promote common interest. China is India’s largest trading partner. China’s imports from India amount to 0.8 per cent of its overall imports, and 4.2 per cent of India’s overall exports. Similarly, China’s exports to India is 2.3 per cent of its overall exports and 12.6 per cent of India’s overall imports. This is a clear indication that India faces trade deficit in favour of China. Despite growing economic and strategic ties, there are several hurdles for both India and China to overcome. India has to improve its balance of payments in terms of China. Doklam stand-off is another problem. Besides, there are China’s military incursions into India’s territory, and above all, India is very anxious about China’s strong bilateral relations with Pakistan. The geopolitical contest between India and China in Sri Lanka has never been so furious as of today, though Lanka is trying to create a balance between the two neighbours. This became an imperative in the context of China holding a majority stake in the southern Hambantoto port. The balance was sought in a proposed joint venture between India and Sri Lanka, giving a 70% stake in running the nearby Mattala airport.30 In the backdrop of the emerging ties between the U.S. and Russia major players in Asia, especially India and China, have to cut out more meaningful ties on all fronts. The United States of America has specific plans for the immediate future in its foreign policy with these countries. The recent decision of the Trump administration to grant India equal status of NATO partners is a conspicuous sign of this, not to forget the strained relation between the two countries in the case of Iran. The purpose of America behind the new tie up with Russia is to counter the possible tilt in the balance of power in favour of the East, especially considering the two emerging economies, India and China. Unless the circumferences are circumscribed by considering the new circumstances the major players in Asia will have to suffer irreparable losses

Environmental Protection: Contextualizing Social Sciences in Managing Climate Change Effects

Dr. Md. Ayub Mallick, Department of Political Science, University of Kalyani, Kalyani, Nadia Climate justice in an age of adaptation means acknowledging that social justice is not about the inequitable distribution of environmental risks; a functioning environment actually creates the conditions for the provision of social justice. Sustainable materialist movements are actively trying to replace a politics of separation with one of immersion, a politics of the domination of nature with one that recognizes human beings as animals in embedded material relationships with ecosystems and the non-human realm. We should focus on engineering human beings rather than geo-engineering the earth system. No particular strategy is fruitful in managing the effects of climate change. Public policy advocates often prioritize either mitigation or adaptation strategy in their recommendations. However, most incorporate some measure of both. Each strategy claims to provide a sustainable solution to this major global challenge. The fact that human impact is responsible for present climate change does not mean that climate change would be avoided if only there was less impact. Instead, this means that the current risks of further climate change-related harms might be much less if or impact was less and our ability to adapt was improved. No particular strategy is fruitful in managing the effects of climate change.

Digital Governance in Rajasthan: Impact Assessment of e-Mitras

Dr. Cheruku Jeevan Kumar, Assistant Professor, Department of Public Policy, Law & Governance, School of Social Science, Central University of Rajasthan, and Swadesh Kumar, Research Intern at Lok Sabha Secretariat, Parliament of India The government is making efforts to computerize service delivery process. 88% of respondents are aware of the e-Mitra center, and 90% of them have visited the e-Mitra center for obtaining services. Its multi-facilitated benefits have resulted in better efficiency and reduced costs leading to satisfaction to the citizens. This should be further taken forward as the people remain devoid of the benefits of this system for want of knowledge and awareness about it. This indicates that there is a need for correction in the operationalization of e-Mitra. Secondly, documents to be appended with application form and rules to be followed are not available in local language. Therefore, the citizens find it difficult to read and fill the prescribed forms e- Mitra centers are easily accessible, and services offered by them are affordable because most of the services cost up to Rs. 32. Banking services and certificates application are the most widely used services by the people followed by the application form, bill payment. They believed that the participation of ordinary people in the service delivery process has increased since the implementation of e-Mitra. As a result, work culture in government offices has improved, and better services are provided now to the public. Delivery of service to the public has improved quite considerably due to automation of service delivery. The work is completed within a reasonable time without greasing the palm of any official. Though e-Mitra Center is situated in a distant place from their houses, majority of the respondent citizens were more concerned about the transparency and quick delivery of service. It is found that the services delivered and the documents required to be submitted to avail these services are not displayed correctly E-Mitra Centers. Sometimes, when the information is not available about records, it puts the people in considerable inconvenience, and they have to revisit these centers which lead to the wastage of time, money and energy. It breeds corruption and develops a lack of faith in the working of the system also. The following are the significant obstacles to access e-governance in the study area: lack of awareness, illiteracy, and lack of digital infrastructure, language issue, corruption, electricity and internet disruption. Some of the e-Mitra service providers charge more than the prescribed amount for availing services. They delay the process for their personal benefit deliberately. Most of the people do not believe that information is available on the internet. Digital illiteracy is a hindrance to the proper implementation of e-Mitra in rural areas. Further, the local representatives are not interested in the implementation of e-governance.

Swachh Bharat Mission – An Analytical Enquiry

Dr. Madhu Thawani, Assistant Professor, Dept of Public Administration, Veer Narmad South Gujarat University, Surat, Gujarat Water, Sanitation and Hygiene are some of the most basic needs for human health and survival. Sanitation (often referred to as ‘environmental sanitation’) includes interventions for the safe management and disposal/re-use of waste. The delivery of safe sanitation services includes infrastructure (e.g. latrines, sewers), associated behaviors (e.g. toilet usage, hand-washing) and a requisite enabling environment (e.g. public health regulations, fiscal incentive schemes for achieving sanitation outcomes).Total Sanitation has been a focus area for successive governments at the centre in India since Independence, still the fastest growing economy have missed out on having adequate toilet facilities as 65% of its population that is nearly half of India’s 1.2 billion people have no toilet at home. According to the census of 2011, 53.1% (63.6% in 2001) of the households in India do not have a toilet, with the percentage being as high as 69.3% (78.1% in 2001) in rural areas and 18.6% (26.3% in 2001) in urban areas. India’s sanitation deficit leads to losses worth roughly 6% of its gross domestic product. Lack of adequate sanitation is a pressing challenge in both rural and urban India. The Government of India has launched the Swachh Bharat Mission on 2nd October, 2014 to accelerate efforts to achieve universal sanitation coverage, improve cleanliness and eliminate open defecation in India by 2019. This research focuses on how far Swachh Bharat Mission has been able provide universal sanitation coverage and eliminate open defecation

Gender and Nation: Reflection on the Role of Women Under Conflict Situations in North East India

Dr. Dolly Phukon, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Dibrugarh University, Assam The northeastern region is a heterogeneous region accommodating diverse cultures, language, ethnicity, and so on. It is difficult to address the gender dimensions keeping in view the vast diversities which also make the gender issues and implications varied in nature. The customary laws prevalent in the region, the contestations among different ethnic groups and also with the Indian state have created a situation of unrest in the region. The socio-political-cultural structures of the region are patriarchal in nature which creates more vulnerability to its women during the situations of unrest. Further the gendered discourses of nationalism and sub-nationalism has put women’s question in the margins. Yet the innumerable narratives of women and their contribution in the nation-building project cannot be denied. They have created their own political spaces for negotiation sometimes using their gendered position as a mother and sometimes deconstruct the very patriarchal construction of the notion of motherhood itself, using their bodies both sexualized and desexualized to make their voices heard. Literatures on women’s quest for their identities, quest for peace and protection of their community is silent due to the masculinist histographies. Today, there is a need to obliterate this stillness and actions should be taken to record and preserve these narratives of women which can be an alternative or counter to the patriarchal narratives. There must also be measures to acknowledge women’s diverse role and their participation in the conflict, peace and in the processes of reconstruction.

Displacement and Land Acquisition : Global and National Magnitudes

Dr. M.R.Biju, Dean, School of Social Sciences & Head, Dept.of Public Administration and Policy Studies, Central University of Kerala, Kasargod and M.R.B. Anantha Padmanabha, Deputy Editor, South Asian Journal of Socio-Political Studies (SAJOSPS) The consequences of land acquisition in India are manifold. The empirical and theoretical studies on displacement through the acquisition of land by the government for development projects have so far focussed on the direct and immediate adverse consequences of land acquisition. Most of the analytical as well as the descriptive accounts of the immediate consequences of land acquisition for development projects draws heavily from Michael Cernea’s ‘impoverishment risk model’, which broadly enumerated eight ‘risks’ or ‘dimensions’ of development-induced displacement. These eight risks are very much direct and basic in natures which are (i) landlessness, (ii) joblessness, (iii) marginalization, (iv) loss of access to common property resources, (v) increased morbidity and mortality, (vi) food insecurity, (vii) homelessness and (viii) social disarticulation. But apart from these direct and immediate effects of land acquisition there are more subtle and indirect effects of this coercive and centralized legal procedure, which have a bearing on various decentralised and participatory democratic processes, and institutions of the state power. Land reforms and the Panchayati raj institutions are the two most important areas, which are being vitiated by land acquisition. Of all the states of India, the consequences and controversies around land acquisition in West Bengal has recently gained a lot of national and international attention. The peasant resistances against governmental land expropriation in Singur and Nandigram has finally led to the fall of the Communist party (Marxist) led government in West Bengal, which ruled the state through democratic election for 34 years. The communist led left front government of West Bengal under the economic liberalisation policy adopted by the Central/Union government of the country shifted from its pro-farmer policy and took to the capitalist path of industrial development, which at the micro-levels endangered the food security of the small and marginal farmers as well as sharecroppers who formed the vote bank of the left front government of West Bengal. Thus the process of land acquisition in India has proven unpopular with the citizenry. The amount reimbursed is fairly low with regard to the current index of prices prevailing in the economy. Furthermore, due to the low level of human capital of the displaced people, they often fail to find adequate employment.

Women Empowerment through Self-Help Groups: Field Reality

Dr. Shankar Chatterjee, Former Prof &Head (CPME), NIRD &PR, Hyderabad-500 030, Telangana, India This research paper deals with how self-help groups (SHGs) have facilitated economic development of rural women to improve the quality of life and thus they were feeling empowered. Based on the filed study carried out in 2017- 2018, the author has presented few cases drawn from different parts of the country. Many of the women in this study belong to marginalised persons and had school education. Since Deendayal Antayodaya Yojana - National Rural Livelihoods Mission, popularly known as DAY-NRLM, is a massive self-employment programme sponsored by the Government of India for rural women so based on recent secondary data, this also has been analysed here. From the above discussion, it is evident that by forming SHG irrespective of caste or religion, rural women by earning income felt empowered, subsequently family could develop economically and ultimately same led to the welfare of the family. Further, it is evident that rural women have the capability to earn as they have entrepreneurial skill and considering their educational background, sex and geographical location SHG is best alternative to work.

Is Sustainable Development Really Possible in Current Scenario in India?

Raj Kishor Pradhan, Senior Statistical Officer, NSSO, FOD, Sambalpur Therefore now it is widely accepted that development is very necessary for growth of any economy. But it is also true that ecological and environmental sustainability of nature should not be hampered. In India it is very sensitive issue. In one hand rapid economic growth requires to generate gainful employment and in other hand we have to conserve our delicate ecosystem without hampering the economic development. Present government has also adopted much environmentally friendly policy. It has ratified Paris Convention which requires definite cut in emission. In Economic Survey report it talked about gradual phasing out of fossil fuel and replacement of renewable energy. In few cases Government has shown its commitment like phasing out of administrative price of petrol and diesel, Ujjala scheme which popularize the use of LPG among poor people. But the real issues are in Land Acquisition Policy and environmental clearance of various projects. So the real challenge of sustainable development in India is to make a perfect tradeoff between environment and economic development. Although it is very painful but we have to unanimously agree that we have left with no other option.

Utilization of Economic Valuation for Augment Conservation Led Management Behaviour – A Case Study of Rangmati Estuary, Gujarat

Bhumika N. Vaghela, Doctoral Fellow, Department of Climate Change Impacts Management, Gujarat University, Ahmedabad, India and Dr. Hitesh A. Solanki, Professor, Department of Botany, Bioinfiormatics and Climate Change Impacts Management, Gujarat University, Ahmedabad, India Estuaries and its associated marshes play key role in maintaining hydrological balance, filtering water of pollutants and providing habitat for various life forms, including the birds, fish, mollusks, crustaceans and other kinds of ecologically and commercially important organisms. Mangroves are the one of the important life forms of the tropical estuaries that provide habitat to a wide variety of organisms and plays an important role in providing various ecosystem goods and services to human beings also. The Rangmati Estuary is situated at the southern part of Gulf of Kachchh in Jamnagar district which falls under hot semi-arid climate. It is the seasonal river and freshwater comes to the river during monsoon season only. Untreated sewage of the Jamnagar city gets released into the Rangmati river which reaches to the Gulf of Kachchh. The Rangmati estuary contains a dense mangrove ecosystem as well as is a biodiversity rich area. Due to polluted water fishes cannot survive in the water, however, during high tide fishes come along with tidal water into the estuary. Considering its rich biodiversity valuation of ecosystem services of Rangmati estuary was conducted. The total value of the Rangmati estuary is estimated as Rs. 1998.68 Million. This study estimates tentative economic value of the estuary as well as provide various strategies to be implemented. The ultimate goal of the study is to contribute towards decision making in the development sector considering environmental perspective.

Critical Analysis of the Functioning of Ombudsman in Tamil Nadu

Dr. G. Palanithurai, Professor, Rajiv Gandhi Chair for Panchayati Raj Studies, Department of Political Science and Development Administration, Gandhigram Rural Institute - Deemed University, Gandhigram Ombudsman for local bodies in Tamil Nadu is new and it is in a nacent stage. For any objective evaluation of the performance of any institution that too on governance, administration and service delivery it requires at least a minimum of five years. Officially, it came into being only on 14th December, 2014. Primarily it is an investigating agency to inquire into the allegations against the elected representatives, officers and employees of local bodies of Tamil Nadu. Still, it is in the process of establishing itself as a vibrant functional unit to discharge the assigned responsibilities. It is a known fact that Tamil Nadu is always a state prompt in adhering to the mandates of the constitution. It is not lacking behind any state in compliance with the mandates of the constitution of India. Whether the state is performing all the activities in line with the spirit of the constitution of India is a debatable question. It is also a reality in Tamil Nadu many of the institutions have excelled in performance only because of the efficient leadership of the institutions. Thus, leadership plays a crucial role in determining the quality of performance. Against this background, a cursory assessment is undertaken to understand the functioning of the ombudsman in Tamil Nadu. For many of the aspects in local bodies, generally opinion makers used to quote the experience of the Kerala state as it is a pioneering state in establishing a vibrant local buy system in Kerala. Thought, it wanted to follow the state of Kerala, Tamil Nadu has not fully followed the state of Kerala. The Grama panchayats and the block panchayats have not included in the ombudsman jurisdiction and they are under the jurisdiction of the inspector of panchayats (District Collector). Many do not know the role of inspector of panchayats. Many are not aware of the ombudsman role of the inspector of panchayats. Within the short span of time, an establishment has been created and started its ombudsman function. It started receiving complaints and they are being investigated. In the first year, the ombudsman received 215 complaints and the second year it received 357 complaints from the public. With the limited infrastructure and the staff the Tamil Nadu ombudsman has conducted 122 sittings to hear the complaints in the first year and 322 sittings have been conducted in the second year. In the short span of time, ombudsman has saved commons worth about several crores from the encroachment. Corrupt officials have been punished. Appropriate directions have been given to the officials for their functioning. There is no investigative agency available at the disposal of ombudsman. There is no adequate advertisement for the mechanism. It is high time to make recommendation for the inclusion of Gram panchayat and block panchayats in the ombudsman system as more of violations and deviations are happened in such lower level institutions in the New Panchayati Raj system. The ombudsman has to move from state headquarters to district headquarters and conduct inquires on the allegations against the officials and the elected representatives. By doing so, it can bring visibility. Within the short span of time, because of the leadership, huge commons worth about several crores have been saved. For the functioning of the ombudsman, Government of Tamil Nadu spends only one to two crore rupees. But through its functioning it had saved huge money through unearthing the violations of procedures and rules to favour private individuals. Thus, the ombudsman has demonstrated that it will be helpful to reduce corruption at the grassroots.

Swami Vivekananda and the Social Revolution

Professor (Dr.) K. Jayaprasad, Pro-Vice Chancellor, Dean, School of Cultural Studies & Director, Mahatma Ayyankali Centre for Kerala StudiesCentral University of Kerala, Kasaragod Intellectual renaissance, enlightenment and social reformation became the foundation of Indian Nationalism and the freedom movement. Renaissance in Europe and India had different track records. The European enlightenment rejected the religion and history and paved the way for modern Science and Technology and the subsequent economic development. But in India, the national awakening resulted in the areas of philosophy, religion, culture, social integration and political consciousness. The Indian culture reasserted its strengths and vitality and started to challenge the dominance of colonial power. As a defence mechanism against the impact of British Colonial rule in the country, the old cultures of the land began to revive and social reform became the primary objective of national awakening. All the social reformers, great sannyasins, and the leading figures of intellectual renaissance stood against social evils, orthodoxy and priest craft. A new humanist and cosmopolitan interpretation began to put upon the old writings and scriptures. They believed that social and moral liberation should prelude to political freedom. Also they cultivated a spiritual conception of freedom and equality. Among the great leaders of 19th Century India, who awakened the Indian nationalism, Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902) had a leading role and hence needs special attention. Though fundamentally a Hindu Sannyasin and Philosopher, he was concerned with the poor, destitute and ignorant masses. The teachings and the personality of Swami Vivekanda had a great influence on the National awakening and the social reform process in India. Being a reformist Vivekananda had a clear understanding on India’s history and also India’s mission to the world. He mercilessly condemned the inequalities of the caste system and untouchability. Though fundamentally a man of religion and philosophy, Swami Vivekanda’s social criticism and concern for the poor needs special attention. He had a clear social vision and wanted to reconstruct the society on the basis of Indian tradition and values.

Empowerment of Women Representatives in Gram Panchayats: A Case Study of Uttar Pradesh

Dr. Ashutosh Pandey, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, Dr. Shakuntala Misra National Rehabilitation University, Lucknow (UP), India This paper relates to Panchayat Raj Institutions with particular reference to the ‘Empowerment of elected women representatives of Gram Panchayat’ in rural local self government. Though in U.P. the Panchayati Raj System is based on three tier system, this study is focused on the basic tier i.e., Gram Panchayat. This is done with a view to explain the basic units of Local Government in U.P. Here there is scope for people’s participation and particularly for women’s representation. It is very difficult to study in detail the whole system of Panchayat Raj, as the subject covers vast area. In this paper an attempt is made to analyse the empowerment of women representatives in Gram Panchayat – A case study of Lucknow district.

Indian E- commerce Industry in the Post-demonetization and GST Era

Dr. M. Sarngadharan, Emeritus Fellow, and former Professor and Head Department of Commerce, University of Kerala The use of electronic commerce, emerged in the early 1990s, has increased at a rapid rate in India. The government has been vigorously promoting digitized economy and this has provided commendably for the growth of Indian electronic commerce industry. Recently, the international giant Walmart has acquired around 77 per cent of the Flipkart, a Bengaluru-based company, having the domination in the industry with the valuation of over $20 billion, for $16 billion. . It is expected that this deal is going to create laudable changes and the fight between Amazon and Flipkart for leadership in the Indian market would swell expeditiously. The consumers have started relying on new methods of making payment with a shift from payment by choosing the cash on delivery. The change in consumer behaviour clearly demonstrates colossal openings for the ecommerce industry, paving the way for massive scope for digital payment market. Standardization of taxes with Goods and Services Tax Act has specifically taken up marketplaces and has come out with rules and regulations specific to this segment. The present paper is an attempt to examine how the introduction of digitalization through demonetization and standardization of indirect taxes through the Goods and Services Tax Act would escalate the e-commerce industry in India in the coming years

Global Economic Slowdown and Changes in Employment Pattern in Organized Manufacturing in India: A State Wise Analysis

D. Indrakumar, Deputy Director, National Institute of Labour Economics Research and Development, Sector A-7, Institutional Area, Narela, Delhi Over the years country has witnessed a significant change in employment in non-agricultural sector. Services and industries sectors has played significant role in absorbing the workforce from agriculture during recent years especially after the new economic reforms of 1991. In the year 1990-91, the organized manufacturing sector contributed 8.28 million jobs to the total workforce of the country and it has been increased to 9.23 million jobs for the year 1994-95. In the year 1999-2000, the sector has registered a loss in the employment opportunities and more than one million workers were lost their jobs in the sector between 1994-95 to 1999-2000. Since then the employment in the sector is positively showing an increase and reached to 13.54 million in 2013-14. The paper is analysing the nature and trend of employment in the organized manufacturing sector especially prior to the global financial crisis of 2008 and after wards

Non-Verbal Communication in Classroom Learning: An Empirical Study on Post-Graduate Management Students

Dr. Nilanjan Sengupta, Professor- HRM and OB, SDM Institute for Management Development, Mysuru and Dr. Mousumi Sengupta, Professor- HRM and OB, SDM Institute for Management Development, Mysuru Communication forms an important component in learning environment across various levels. Communication, both verbal and non-verbal, constitutes a fundamental part of learning effectiveness, since it affects the perceptions of students as receivers of information, by articulating the senders’ ideas, knowledge, feelings, and, emotions. A number of studies have clearly demonstrated that, non-verbal communication played a significant role in classroom teaching. In the present study, the authors attempted to investigate the opinion of the post-graduate students, in the management institutes in Karnataka, on the significance of non-verbal communication in the classroom learning. Total 13 issues, under 4 factors of non-verbal communication, such as, appearance, visual, personal, and, verbal, were investigated. Data revealed that, the students felt that attitude, spatial distance and facial expression influenced the classroom, the most. Also, it was found out that, there were significant difference between the average importance levels assigned by the students, to the variables, under each factor. Further analysis revealed that, only for certain variables under each factor, students differed significantly in assigning importance level

Trends in the Growth of Schools by Management in Andhra Pradesh

Dr. D. Pulla Rao, Professor and Head, Department of Economics, Andhra University, Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh. Education is the important requirement and foundation on which the development of every citizen and the nation as a whole built on. Free and compulsory education to all children up to the age fourteen is the Constitutional commitment in India. Though the Parliament of India has enacted the Right to Education Act, yet the country has to achieve the elusive goal of Universalization of Elementary Education (UEE), which means 100 percent enrolment and retention of children with schooling facilities in all habitations. It was rightly recognized that, elementary education was of an immense importance for building up a responsible citizenry for a democratic, secular and socialist society. In this paper an attempt is made to analyze the trends in the growth of Primary, Upper Primary and High Schools by management. The study covers the time period from 2000-2001 to 2011-2012. The total number of primary schools in Andhra Pradesh increased from 55,901 in 2000-01 to 66,721 by 2011-12 and Upper Primary schools increased gradually from 9,804 in 2000-01 to 15,759 by 2011-12. The total number of high schools increased from 10,277 in 2000-01 to 19,770 by 2011-12 and noticed to increase at an annual growth rate of 5.43 per cent during the study period.

The Uneasy Acquiescence of Indian Media

Professor (Dr.) S.N. Misra, Dean, School of Management, Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology, Odisha, India and Sanjaya Ku. Ghadai, Research Scholar, School of Management, Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology, Bhubaneswar Media acts as the fourth arm of democracy to supplement the Supreme Court in its role as the watchdog of the Constitution. It also acts as a talisman of common man’s quest for socio economic justice. Noam Chomsky was the first to highlight how through several filters, consent is manufactured from media by the corporate houses. The paper brings how in the free market economy of India, similar filters are being used to promote the cause of nationalism, branding contrarian viewpoints as “anti national” and muzzling dissent. The contrasting report of Global Hunger Index (GHI) and Ease of Doing Business brings out the dissonance between the growth story and human development achievements, as reflected consistently in poor Human Development Index (HDI). The paper laments that majority of the media do not cover the underbelly of rural distress, which the Socio-Economic Caste Census (SECC) Report (2011) brings out. It also brings out how there is a harmony between social and economic indicators in China as compared to India due to strong political will. Of particular concern is the distressing situation of malnutrition of children as brought out by the Rapid Survey on Children (RSOC) report. Yet one more area which is at the heart of impacting human development indices is quality of primary education. Sadly post RTE Act 2009, guaranteeing right to education, the Annual Status of Education Reports (ASER) bring out how in terms of basic infrastructure and learning outcomes there is acute shortfall from the desired levels. The secondary education also shows a lack of vocational skill amongst children in the age group of (14-18) which is seriously impeding their employability. The paper strongly recommends that the press must play its role as an independent sentinel in a democratic system to supplement public opinion against apathy and high handedness of the governing class over the governed. A free media with an enabling environment and political neutrality is a surefire guarantee against fascist tendencies

Media and Human Right Violation: An Analysis of News Sensationalism in News Papers in Kerala

Ronie Thomas, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science and Public Administraton, St John’s College, Anchal, Kollam, Kerala Media is the most important element in any democracy. Journalism depends on the people’s perspective of news and news values. It is said that news is a mere construction of an event or a happening or person. News selects, processes, produces and shapes an event or happening. But it totally depends on us, readers, to make our own sense of the news. However, over the years, media has also assumed the role of an opinion maker and creator of public opinion. This is highlighted with the help of the case study mentioned above. Over the years, we have seen that the power of press is to bring about social and political change or economic development in a country. The power of press can also be understood in the basis of how the people respond and react to the news. As is seen from the case studies, media has been quite powerful in forming public opinion. People had realized that justice had been denied and it was necessary to protest and speak aloud. Both the cases involved high-profile people and this fact made the people all the more interested and aware of the proceedings of the cases. As is seen in the two case studies, we see that media interference helped in the rightful and proper closure of the case. One of the primary functions of the media in a democracy is to act as the opposition of the government and also stay neutral in the process. This role of the media is highlighted in both the cases. None of the cases would have got so much of importance in the judiciary had the media not intervened. The investigations on part of media also helped to accelerate the trials of the cases. Both the cases also exposed the der cases are classic examples of Lop sided judiciary of India and how influential and powerful people manage to get away even after committing serious crimes. Both the cases can be considered as measuring sticks of the power of media in influencing the public and ensuring justice to the citizens. The use of investigative journalism in the two case studies highlights the power of media and the social responsibility of media in a democratic setup. Both the cases are classic examples of high profile cases where initially, people with power and influence were managing to get away scot-free. This very fact was highlighted by media in both the cases and ultimately media helped the cases to be reopened. The same people who were earlier acquitted, were finally put behind bars and justice prevailed. Therefore, media interference helped the hidden facts to be unearthed thereby allowing the judiciary to take notice of the loopholes and extensive malpractices of the administrative system in India. It is very important to have a responsive and responsible media in order to have a healthy democracy. Indian media is witness to various incidents ever since its inception. Investigative journalism was the tool used by journalists for both these cases. This type of journalism is relatively new in the country and is still a topic of debate. However, these cases in which investigative journalism was used proved the power of media in forming healthy public opinion. This function of media thereby allows the development of a strong democracy, thereby allowing for healthy social development in the country

Relationship Quality: An application of the Constructs of RELQUAL in Destination Marketing Organisations (DMOs) in Kerala

Dr. Tejil Thomas, Assistant Professor, PG & Research Department of Commerce, St. Thomas College, Palai, Kerala Relationship quality is an emerging concept for destination marketers to retain the tourists in a highly volatile and a competitive tourism marketplace. The study illustrates the relationship quality perceptions of tourists by using the modified constructs of the RELQUAL scale (Carmen Lages, Cristiana Raquel Lages, Luis Filipe Lages, 2005). Thus, the purpose of the paper is to propose a model illustrating interactions between the dimensions of relationship quality and assessing the extent of relationship quality of destination marketing organisations in Kerala perceived by both foreign and domestic tourists. Mann Whitney U test is applied to draw inference about the significance of difference in the perception of foreign and domestic tourists about the six dimensions of relationship quality of DMOs viz. Trust, Commitment, Cooperation, Information and communication, tourist loyalty and guest orientation. Structural Equation Modelling (SEM) has been used for exemplifying the proposed model. Trust is the most important factor of relationship quality of DMO perceived by the tourists.

Heritage Tourism: The Keala Experience

Dr. Shan Eugene Palakkal, Assistant Professor, Department of History and Tourism, Stella Maris College (Autonomous), Chennai The word ‘Heritage’ refers to everything that has been handed down to us from the previous generations – this could be in the form of physical things (whether great monuments or articles of daily use) as well as ways of life (culture and tradition). In fact, the spirit of any nation is founded upon its historic heritage, and if this knowledge becomes shaky, the nation loses one of the important factors for its existence itself. Thus ‘heritage’ is a great teacher of history. Despite such a wonderful heritage as ours, people generally do not have enough knowledge about it, and therefore parts of our heritage are being destroyed everyday – without even being recorded for future generations. The notion of ‘Heritage Walks’ as a medium for exhibiting cultures, analyses the methodology of organising living exhibits, and offers suggestions on making a career and a business venture out of the activity. It is my belief that heritage walks can be an effective academic and intellectual activity for the art of cultural representation. So also performing heritage which is the art of presenting cultural heritage from a new perspective. Now Performance is associated with theatre, drama, dance and music. Question is ‘how can an inanimate like heritage be performed’ ? Performance could be enactment, presentation, occurrence, walks and recitals. Eg. a dance performer represents a certain tradition and represents a certain heritage through her performance; a heritage walk leader is a performer who interprets heritage. A walk leader takes the tourists from one area to another to view heritage, and binds them to the heritage site with the performed narrative. The function of the presenter is to perform her interpretation of the concerned heritage in a manner so as to convey a certain perspective on the heritage to the tourists. Walks can take many forms with the aim of experiencing, documenting and living a territory in unusual ways: guided tours run by heritage communities, sensitive walks run by artists, walks run by historians/authors and visits to the homes of residents in their own neighbourhoods. Examples like Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage organised by the Smithsonian Museum (Washington DC) conducts the annual Folklife Festival which attracts tourists from all over the world; annual Citrawarna (Colours of Malaysia) festival that showcases heritage and culture of Malaysians in July attract foreign tourists through varieties of performing arts, visual arts and crafts, dance, heritage walks, parades and diverse cuisines1; Heritage walks in Chennai, New and Old Delhi during the Heritage week in August, Sahapedia walks across India in few cities, India Heritage Walk Festival (led by Sahapedia and YES culture) are a few to name.

Prospects of Responsible Tourism in Kerala and Strategies for Its Sustained Growth: Firm Level Evidence from Kumarakom in Kottayam

Dr. Manoj P. K, Assistant Professor, Department of Applied Economics, Cochin University of Science and Technology (CUSAT), Kochi, INDIA The immense potential of tourism for bringing about economic development and employment generation is widely recognised in the literature. Promotion of tourism is considered as really meaningful for faster development of nations, particularly for developing nations like India. This fact has been acknowledged by International agencies like the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). Notwithstanding the exceptional tourism resources available in India, the country could not utilize these resources properly because only during the last two decades tourism has been getting due attention in the country. Even if India is considered unique in its rich bio-diversity and cultural heritage, the vast tourism potential of the country still remains underutilised. Here lies the need for effective promotion of environment-friendly tourism models like Responsible Tourism (RT) and its variants like ecotourism. In respect of Kerala state in particular – one of the Indian states with the highest level of tourism resources in the whole of India – the situation has been more discouraging because Kerala’s performance in the tourism front has not been proportionate with its enviable tourism resources. A few recent studies by the author have pointed out the vast potential of Kerala’s tourism sector for faster economic development of the state by way of employment generation, rural livelihood development, community development etc. This paper is a continuation of the earlier studies of the author and it looks into the problems and prospects of the RT initiative of ‘Samrudhi’ group which is located at Kumarakom in Kottayam district of Kerala – one of the most important RT destinations in the whole of India. The paper suggests strategies for sustainable growth of RT, based on the findings of the study.