From: Shiza Malik, Aug 10, 2017 in Dawn
It’s a sweltering June day in Muridke in Sheikhupura district in Punjab. The harsh summer sun glints off of the rice paddies which cover thousands of acres in this area. Some of the world’s finest Basmati rice is grown here. Dotting these paddies are the colourful figures of hundreds of women bent over the sodden earth, manually planting each seedling.
Razia Bibi and her daughters wade through the pesticide filled muddy sludge, which fills the field. They hold bunches of seedlings in one hand and use the other to swiftly place each plant into the earth at a specific distance. Doing this work for every summer of their lives has made their movements almost mechanical and working in large groups, they manage to transplant rice over large swathes of land each day. But, the land they work on is not theirs, neither is the rice they grow.
The working conditions are harsh; the water that fills the fields is full of leeches and corrosive chemicals. Each day someone in the group collapses from the heat. The wages are abysmal. But, Razia is a widow with six children, two of whom have polio. So in a place like Muridke, her options are limited.
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From DNA India. See original article
Author: Kota Neelima
The impact of drought on women farmers remains unregistered by the state, which considers them only in their non-farm roles in rural households and village communities. The new drought relief manual is no different as it merely provides an alibi for the state to abdicate its responsibility towards farm crises and utilises gender to reduce its intervention in agriculture by addressing only one half of the population.
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According to this article, there are nearly 98 million women who work in agriculture in India. Yet they do not have the rights or access to markets that they have been promised and that will help make their work dignified. Women who adopt the System of Rice Intensification and other improved farming techniques can produce the food, but they need policy support to see their work reaping the dividends it should.
See original article from The Logical Indian
Their protest is not a general sit-in demonstration. The women are seen carrying the commodities in a basket on their head. The products are necessarily the ones whose MSP is less than the cost of production. They have been in conversation with CACP officials, but no action has been taken.
So, today, they gathered in front of the gates of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ welfare to draw public attention.
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by Hema Swaminathan
The Hindu Business online
With men migrating to cities for better jobs, women are now playing a critical role in farming, but they face many odds
Women have made significant contributions to agriculture in India. The current situation of rural transformation has brought to light women’s roles in agriculture. Typically, any discussion on this topic tends to focus on the most obvious trends; the proportion of women working in the agricultural sector as self-employed, unpaid help or wage labour.
What is ignored is an important and interesting shift in women’s roles: women are increasingly participating in farms as managers and decision-makers.
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by Kate Cronin-Furman, Nimmi Gowrinathan , & Rafia Zakaria
The Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership, The City College of New York
What’s the problem with chickens and sewing machines?
We argue that they are hallmarks of an approach that fails to grapple with non-
Western women as full subjects and instead collapses their identity to the
circumstances of their victimhood. Empowerment programming is explicitly
depoliticizing, obscuring women’s relationships to power and the state.
A must-read article on how the idea of ’empowering’ women from the Global South has become precisely not about that … Read the article here – No longer available online!
The article here by Rafia Zakaria covers similar areas