Land literacy important for local development | india | Hindustan Times
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Land literacy important for local development

To achieve development, a perception of what needs to be done in any locality should come from the people of that area.

india Updated: Mar 17, 2004 01:08 IST

To achieve development, a perception of what needs to be done in any locality should come from the people of that area, indeed from those for whom local activities are crucial.

Our villagers are predominantly landless agricultural labourers, share-croppers, tenant cultivators and small and marginal farmers. The diversity in socio-cultural, socio-economical and socio-political conditions and the variations of primary resources such as land and water, and the dependent secondary resources give rise to differing development needs from place to place.

For example, the requirements of Muthukulathur block at Ramnathapuram district in Tamil Nadu are vastly different from the needs of, say, Banja Nagar in Orissa or Kashipur in West Bengal or Chainpur in Bihar.

Muthukulathur block is drought prone. People here are dependent on agriculture. The literacy campaign in the region succeeded in bringing about a social transformation - institutions such as MAHARAM came up as a result of this.

Banjam Nagar, unlike Muthukulathur, is rich in primary resources and has substantial soil and forest cover. The literacy campaign failed to build any momentum in the region.
Kashipur is a region which faces acute water shortage. It has a strong tradition of Panchayati Raj. A mass movement could be built here even in the absence of the literacy campaign.