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Economic Reforms and Small Farms   
Economic Reforms and Small Farms
Implications for Production Marketing and Employment
Parmod Kumar • Sandip Sarkar
In association with
the Institute for Human Development, New Delhi

Hard-bound Book (6½ × 9¾)  :   Pages : 268

2012  Edition   :   ISBN - 978-81-7188-937-2

Price : Rs. 995.00 / USD 55.95

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Advance praise comments:

"The book attempts to perceive two faces of Indian agriculture, Punjab representing the prosperous Indian farmer yet attempting suicide and Bihar representing the deprived and subsistence farmer trying to come out of the ebb of poverty and deprivation. Must publish this work"

Prof R.S. Deshpande, (Director ISEC, Bangalore) 

"Interesting work on contrasting picture of Indian agriculture and reforms.

Sucha Singh Gill (Director CRIDD, Chandigarh)


This book looks at the impact of recent agriculture-related policy changes on the emerging production, marketing and earning status of small versus large farmers based on primary and secondary data. Comparing two contrasting states of Punjab and Bihar, the study finds that whereas Punjab farming set the course of commercialisation way behind in the early seventies and the state has bright prospect for a new phase of corporatisation leading to ascendancy of processing and value addition, Bihar agriculture is still caught in the web of subsistence farming. Majority of holdings being marginal and small in the state, the mechanisation and commercialisation of agriculture is still at a rudimentary stage and farmers have to depend on non-farm activities to make their daily earnings. Farm income was the chief source of household income in Punjab with 76 per cent share, whereas contribution of farm income in total household income was only 36 per cent in Bihar. Farmers’ opinion about the globalisation process revealed that only the large and medium farmers stood better off after the reform process whereas for the landless and small farmers, it has become difficult to eek-out their livelihood. For setting course for the future, understanding the current status of globalisation is necessary. Different policy actions in different states are de rigueur to bring the farmers out of their dilemmas especially the small and marginal ones who are at the ebb of deprivation.

About the Author:

Parmod Kumar is presently Professor and Head, Agricultural Development and Rural Transformation Centre, Institute for Social and Economic Change, Bangalore. Previously, he worked at the National Council of Applied Economic Research, New Delhi. He obtained his Post-doctorate in Economics as ‘Sir Ratan Tata Fellow’ from the Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi and Doctorate in Economics from the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He also worked as a faculty at Delhi University in his initial academic career. He was Fellow under the ‘International Visitors Program’ sponsored by the Government of United States.

Dr. Kumar has authored several books and published more than 30 research articles in the refereed national and international journals. His core theme of work relates to agriculture and rural development. He is leading several research projects sponsored by the Government of India and various international organisations.

  Sandip Sarkar is currently Professor at the Institute for Human Development, New Delhi. Previously, he has worked in several research institutes like Institute of Economic Growth and Institute for Studies in Industrial Development. He is a doctorate in Economics in the field of agro-industry and its inter-linkage with agriculture.

He has authored two books and large number of research articles in reputed journals. His main area of research is poverty, labour and livelihood in agriculture and non-agricultural sectors in which he has worked over two decades. He has been extensively involved in several large research projects funded by reputed national and international agencies.



List of Tables and Figures


1. Portrait of Two Faces

Small and Large Farm Sector in the New Economic Regime

Getting Policy Right

Setting the Parameters

Choice of Regions

The Scaffolding

2. Reforms and the Agricultural Economy of Punjab and Bihar

Meso-Level View

Agricultural Economy at Two Extremes: Bihar and Punjab

3. Production Structure and Resource Use

Characteristics of the Region

Credit Market


High Yielding Variety Seeds

Cropping Pattern

Economics of Production and Resource Use Efficiency

Production Function

4. Market and Prices

Marketed Surplus (Aggregate)

Marketed Surplus (Crop-wise)

Marketing Channels

Marketing Cost

Prices Received by the Farmers

Regression Results

5. Employment, Earnings and Consumption

Employment Status of Selected Households

Employment in Crop Sector

Employment in Livestock Activity

Farm and Non-Farm Earnings

Consumption Pattern 

6. Globalisation in the Context of Punjab and Bihar

Social Indicators

Land Transactions

Farm Investment in Asset Holdings

Ownership of Livestock

Ownership of Household Assets

Households Views on Effect of
Globalisation on Rural Economy

7. Lessons for Policy

Economic Reforms and Agriculture Sector

Summary of the Findings of the Study

Implications and Policy Thrust





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