By Joseph Tharamangalam
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Extra info for Agrarian Class Conflict: The Political Mobilization of Agricultural Labourers in Kuttanad, South India
But caste can no longer give us an accurate description of the structure of land tenure in Kuttanad. The relative dissociation between caste and landownership has meant that the ownership and control over land have become even more crucial in determining one's position and life chances in society than in the past. Ironically, the possibility of owning land has presented itself to the low-caste man just at the time Kuttanad has become known as one of the areas with the lowest per capita availability of land in the country.
17 Unlike the Namboothiris they took an active interest in modern education and are found in large numbers in politics, industry, and in the modern professions. In Kuttanad the Nairs have lost a great deal of land during the last hundred years, and it is quite common to find impoverished Nair families who were in the recent past wealthy or at least relatively well off. Impoverished Nairs, like impoverished and dispossessed upper castes in general, have provided many recruits to radical parties in Kerala during the last four decades.
Since fertilizers are an essential component of the Green Revolution package, these were provided at subsidized rates in Alleppey district. The number of fertilizer depots in Alleppey district increased from 249 in 1961-62 to 403 in 1969-70. It is estimated that the per hectare consumption of fertilizers has increased from 61 kg in 1961-62 to 190 kg in 1968-69. 26 Pesticides are also part of the package and have been widely adopted. Moreover, it has now become evident that the new varieties and the vastly increased use of fertilizers have themselves contributed greatly to the vulnerability of paddy to pests and diseases.
Agrarian Class Conflict: The Political Mobilization of Agricultural Labourers in Kuttanad, South India by Joseph Tharamangalam