Monthly Archives: April 2014

Development of Village in India

Development of Village in India

The villages in India forms the major portion of India. It is India itself, almost the whole of it. It is the fact and the arithmetic of the matter. The rural/ village community makes more than 80 percent of India’s population. This was so for many centuries and this will remain so for a long time yet to come. Every single person will admit that 80 percent of the people are almost the whole of the people, that what affects them will affect the whole nation and that what does not touch them is of little consequence. No programme in our country can become a nation programme if it is not a rural community programme and yet, whenever there is a programme of national improvement, there comes the unfailing tendency to concentrate it in some vivid patches in our towns and cities.

While the villages form a vast portion of India, the problems profoundly affecting its life and growth are complex to a great degree. Political, social, economic, moral and cultural factors have combined to create a situation which can stagger any thinker or reformer.

There is not one single vital issue which is not complicated by innumerable other factors. Let us take, for instance, the problem of economic development of villages in India. The whole of this problem is affected by the caste system, the religious and cultural tradition and the conflict of ideologies. T

he problem of food and land are closely mixed together, making the land hunger and the landless a major issue.

The problems of unemployment and small-scale industries are interlocked, creating a challenge for villages of mixed economy in which industrialization and decentralized production must proceed, without the one destroying the other.

Again public health in the rural area of villages has created challenge for preventive rather than creative work.

The development of villages is largely dependent on education and yet cannot do without the best education possible. The first thing that catches our attention is the widespread illiteracy and ignorance among the rural areas in India. The majority of the people living in the villages do not know the alphabet, and only a microscopic minority of the inhabitants can read and write. This is because of the want of schools and colleges in rural surroundings. There is hardly any efficient school well-equipped with good books in most the villagers. The lack of adequate educational facilities is responsible for the illiteracy of the people.

India is pre-eminently an agricultural country. The Indian Villages are very backward and the farmers are extremely conservative. They are old-fashioned and highly opposed to the introduction of new methods in agriculture. They belief in old traditions and customs though their utility has ceased to be. They are, thus, averse to the worship of the rising sun of knowledge and culture in modern society. The villages in India are the breeding grounds of superstitions and irrational thoughts. Because of the lack of the penetrating rays of scientific knowledge in the rural areas, the people are still inclined to believe in superstitions. They will not begin their new work on certain days in the week and will give most unbelievable reasons for their mishaps. Diseases are explained by the wrath of gods and goddesses whom they will worship so that their sufferings may be cured.

The villages are extremely dirty and the roads in rainy season particularly, become so muddy that one cannot think of crossing them easily without spoiling one’s clothes. The result is that malaria takes a heavy toll of life during the rainy season. Even in other months of the year, the situation in the villages is equally deplorable. The villagers have no idea of sanitation. They deposit their crow dung and their refuse near their own houses, which are generally shared by them with the animals. The poor condition of the houses for human habitation coupled with the insanitary neighboring make the dirtiness in villages a blot on the rural areas.

In rural areas, agriculture is the main occupation of the people. They depend on the prosperity of their crops and the fertility of the soil. Unfortunately, the present condition of Indian agriculture is extremely deplorable, so much so that for last many years Indians have been suffering from food shortage. Our agricultural machinery is out of gear. The old method of ploughing the land is neither fruitful nor productive of much good. Manure in Indian agriculture is of the poorest quality there being the absence of chemical fertilizer in our agricultural system. Seeds are rotten and fail to germinate. The other implements are also crude. The condition of cattle is so poor that a sight at the bullocks will call forth feelings of pity from the observers.

Cottage industries are in keeping with the genius of the people in villages. Development of Cottages industries in villages can serve as an additional occupation to agriculture. During the off-season they provide employment to the agriculturists and bring money to the poor cultivators. These industries include rope-making, basket-making, rope-making, dyeing clothes, etc. Unfortunately, the cottage industries in the rural areas are in a state of decadence. Many people are coming to the towns to find employment in factories. The handicraft of these villagers is being ruthlessly strangled by modern commercialism. The lack of proper financial facilities, as well as the want of adequate marketing organization of the products of cottage industries, has worked for the ruin of cottage industries in our villages.

These poor conditions of the Indian villages call for an immediate reform and improvement. The first and foremost remedy suggested is the introduction of proper education in villages. We have to devise a system of education which aims at training the villagers in useful practical works, developing their general outlook on life and the infusing in them the spirit of courage, hope and initiative. Education has reached in some of the villagers and people living there are showing signs of a new awakening. It is supposed that if this process of educational expansion embraces more and more villages of India, the fate of the rural community will improve considerably and we shall be able to build India of Gandhiji’s vision, brick by brick and stone by stone.

In addition to the educational factor, the following may be the main items in outline, for the development of the village community as quickly as possible to a fuller and better life. These items are balanced in such a way as to combine the material and moral implications which are necessary to build up a peaceful, prosperous and just society in India. They are:

  1. More food through better agriculture and an equitable redistribution of land through peaceful method of persuasion.
  2. Better food though mass education in the elementary rules of dietics at the village level.
  3. Better health through above and through a national sanitation drive touching the people on every side.
  4. Improvement and organization of cottage and village industries leading up to the maximum possible regional self-sufficiency in the rural area linked to the philosophy and outlook of mutual servicer and neighborliness. This must mean the enfoldment of multi-purpose co-operative.
  5. Self-government from the bottom through Panchayats which should be real.
  6. Moral rearmament of the bottom though cultural and recreational programs deriving inspiration from the past traditions of India and going forward to link up with the best traditions of the modern world.

None of these are new items. But they must now be taken up in a new spirit. Technique must mingle with the spirit. Material improvement must elevate the cultural level instead of dragging it down to the dust as is often done now. It is not enough to achieve a working synthesis of the many programs of material development. It is even more necessary to achieve a working synthesis between all the programs of material improvement on the one hand and the moral rearmament of the people on the other.

A good deal of work has to be done for the development of the villages. Neither thoughts nor words however lofty, can achieve anything. The work, for the welfare of the rural community is many-sides and most difficult one. It is going to be long and laborious. We must, therefore, cultivate not only clear minds but strong guts. The soul and the nerve must keep pace with each other. We will have to build slowly and step by step. One can only pray that the great God of India’s history will give the people the clarity of mind, the strength of will and humility of spirit which alone will enable them to fulfill their high destiny in a world, which is on the verge of either total disaster or complete transformation.

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Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq

Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq

Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq ascended to the throne of Delhi Sultanate after the death of his father, Ghiyas-ud-din-Tughlaq.

Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq was one of the extraordinary characters in history. He was a lover of Persian literature, music, fine arts and calligraphy. Historians have different views about him as he took bold steps, far ahead of his time but did not do the right thing to implement these. His innovative and well conceived projects thus led him to ruin and earned him negative titles as a ‘mixture of opposites’, ‘an idealist’ and even a ‘mad man’.

Transfer of Capital:

Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq shifted his capital from Delhi to Devagiri and named it Daulatabad. He was rational to locate his capital in a centrally located place from where the Deccan territories could have been easily controlled. Moreover, Delhi was in the grip of severe famine and constantly threatened by the Mongol invasions. He would have been successful had he shifted only the state offices, instead he ordered every citizen to move. On realizing the failure of the scheme and the intensity of the Mongol threat he ordered everybody to shift back.

Introduction of Token Currency:

Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq introduced bronze and brass coins to meet the deficiency in the supply of silver. This practical experiment also ended in a fiasco, due to circulation of counterfeit coins on a large scale. Trading also suffered a serious loss and foreign merchants refused to accept these coins. Consequently, the token currency was withdrawn and silver ones were reintroduced causing serious damage to state coffers.

Higher Taxation in the Doab:

In order to generate high revenue, Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq imposed high land tax in the Ganga-Yamuna Doab region, where the peasants were reeling under severe drought. The farmers refused to pay and rose in rebellion. The tax-collectors showed no mercy in collecting the tax and as a result the peasants fled to forests. This caused a serious famine in the country. After learning about the miserable condition of the peasants, he saved the situation by distributing seeds, grains, money, farming loans and introducing irrigation facilities. However, it was too late and people and agriculture suffered a heavy setback.

Plan to Improve Agriculture:

The agriculture department of the sultanate administration, called Diwan-i-Amir-i-Kohi, was set up to bring about improvements in farming methods and regain fallow lands but it was of no use as the land acquired under the project was infertile and the money was not sensibly spent.

Plan of Conquests:

Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq dreamt of building up a world empire. He organized a huge army and paid them the salary of one year in advance. Then he proceeded towards Iraq and Khorasan. Huge expenditure forced him to abandon the project and disband the army.

Estimate:

Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq’s experiments failed and his popularity also declined. He lost the support of his people and ulemas. People rose in revolt in Malwa (Deccan) Devagiri, Lahore, Ayodhya, Bengal, and Gujarat Multan. The Vijaynagar and the Bahmani Kingdoms arose from the ruin of his kingdom in the Deccan.

Sedimentary Rocks and its Classification

Sedimentary Rocks and its Classification

The Latin word `sedere’ means ‘settling down’. Deposition (settling down) of eroded materials of pre-existing rocks by natural agents like river, glacier, wind at distant places below the river, lake, sea or oceans under water in layers and solidification of these sediments (deposited particles) in layers form Sedimentary Rocks. As these rocks are formed under water, so they are called Aqueous Rocks.

Sedimentary Rocks are also called Stratified Rocks (Latin ‘strata’ means ‘layers’) as they are formed in layers. Each layer is called ‘bed’ and the surface separating two adjacent beds is called ‘Bedding Plane’. Cracks developed at angles to this bedding plane due to unequal pressure are called Joints. Remains or impressions of plants and animals embedded in the sedimentary rocks are called Fossils. Fossils are commonly found in these type of rocks. For example, fossils found in the Himalayas, Alps, and the Atlas Mountain in Africa have led the scientists to conclude that all these mountains were formed by sediments

Classification of Sedimentary Rocks

Sedimentary rocks are classified, according to their origin as follows:

1. Mechanically formed sedimentary rocks: When sediments of various sizes are cemented together, this type of sedimentary rock is formed, e.g.,

  • Grit – When small pebbles are cemented.
  • Conglomerate – when rounded and bigger pebbles are cemented.
  • Breccia – When angular fragments are cemented,
  • Mudstone or Shale – When fine particles are cemented.

2. Organically formed sedimentary rocks: When the rocks are formed by the accumulation of decomposed plants or animals, this type of rocks is formed. They are called

  • Calcareous sedimentary rocks, e.g., limestone which are deposits of decomposed shells and skeletons of marine organisms.
  • Carbonaceous sedimentary rocks, e.g., coal which is accumulation of decomposed plants.

3. Chemically formed sedimentary rocks: These rocks are the deposits formed by the precipitation of dissolved salts in water after evaporation, e.g., gypsum and rock salt.

Ocean Currents in Pacific Ocean

Ocean Currents in Pacific Ocean

Ocean Currents with Clockwise Circulation

  1. North-Pacific Equatorial Current is a warm current caused by the North-East Trade wind.
  2. OyaShio is cold current flowing from the northern edge of the Pacific Ocean off the eastern coast of the Kamchatka Peninsula and the Kuril of Russia. `Oya’ means cool and ‘Shio’ current.
  3. KuroShio (or Japan Current) is a warm current flowing along south and eastern coast of Japan. It is also called Japan Current. The Kuro (warm) Shio current is formed by the North Pacific Equatorial Current. Latter’s water divides off the Philippines and forms the Kuro shio.
  4. Californian Current is a cool current in the Pacific Ocean. Temperature of water masses in this is lower than that of the water masses in the surroundings.
  5. North Pacific Drift is a warm current. It is caused by the westerlies. It is in fact the continuation of the Kuro shio.
  6. Pacific Equatorial Counter Current (Coriolis effect is nil) is a warm current flowing from the western margin of the Pacific Ocean to its eastern margin along a line about 5°N. It is a compensatory counter current.

Ocean currents with anticlockwise circulation

  1. South Pacific Equatorial Current are a warm current. It flows westward from the eastern margin of the Pacific along the west coast of the northern South America towards eastern coast of New Guinea.
  2. South Pacific Drift is a cool current. It flows eastward in about 40° South parallel. It is also called West Wind Drift.
  3. Cromwell Current is an, undercurrent flowing eastward along the equator beneath the South Pacific Equatorial current.
  4. Peru or Humboldt Current is a cold ocean current in the Pacific Ocean. Antarctic water and up-welling west-coast water, together with its northward direction, all make this current markedly cold. It flows along the Chile and Peru coasts of South America. This current is known as Peru Current or Current of Humboldt.
  5. Antarctic Circumpolar Current is a cool current. It flows around the Antarctic continent clockwise in latitudes 50° to 65°S.
  6. El Nino is a warm Pacific current, originating in the warm equatorial current. It occurs with intensity every seven to fourteen years and temporarily replaces the cold current (Humboldt Current) off the Peru coast. The El Nino effect causes sudden change of temperature. It kills fish even, so that beaches are littered with dead fish.

Essay on India and Her Neighbours

India and Her Neighbours

While there is a choice, though a limited one, in case of families to have a neighbour(s) of their liking, this is not available in the case of countries. India shares its borders with 7 neighbouring countries – Pakistan, China, Srilanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Burma.

The age-old maxim – a good neighbour is a blessing while a bad one is a curse – still holds good. The location of countries depends on history and geography and they determine the character, characteristics and composition of states. No state can alter the borders and frontiers of the neighboring country forcibly, however unpleasant and unfriendly attitude of that country may be. In such a situation, the best course available is to face the odds according to the situation that may arise from time to time.

The old principle – “There is neither a permanent friend nor a permanent enemy but only permanent interest” – generally determines the foreign policy of a country. Outside vested interests have recently tried to create a wrong impression in the minds of the small neighboring nations of India that India has become a super power in the region and a Big Brother. This has induced them to seek assistance, both military and monetary, from the Super Powers to face the so called Big Brother. Actually the problems of the countries of the third world have been the legacy of colonialism. India has also gone through such a situation.

India and Pakistan

India and Pakistan were one country before independence and were bound by historical, cultural and natural ties. The people of these two countries they have fought three wars. After every war, new agreement was signed between them but their relations have always remained abnormal and unfriendly. The main bone of contention has been the Jammu and Kashmir problem. Both the sides have their own reservations in this regard.

India and China

India and China are giants of Asia. Leaders of both these neighboring countries propounded the doctrine of “Panchsheel” and started off their relations on the best of terms and understanding. But this euphoria was short-lived and was rudely rattled by China who resorted to unprovoked aggression against India in 1962. India was caught napping. However, this armed conflict with China opened our eyes and India faced with full preparations the subsequent wars with Pakistan in 1965 and 1971. Since conflict with China, diplomatic relation between the two countries remained almost negligible. However, in the seventies, both countries realized the usefulness of diplomatic relations and started normalizing them steadily. As a furtherance of this process the Prime Minister of India visited China in 1988 followed by visits of Commerce Ministers of the each other country and resumption of trade activities.

India and Srilanka

India’s relations with Sri Lanka are based on respecting the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka and protection of interests of the Tamils there in accordance with the 1987 agreement.

India and Nepal

The centuries-old cultural, religious and political ties of India with Nepal touched an all time low with the termination of trade and transit treaties in March 1989. Nepal’s overtures to China for purchase of arms also caused concern to India. Nepal tried to make the issue an international one. This resulted in further bitterness and misunderstanding. With the change in Government in India, status quo ante has been restored in respect of trade and transit. The visit of India’s Prime Minister to Nepal has also eased the situation.

India and Bangladesh

India’s hope of resolving long-standing problems with Bangladesh has brightened with the restoration of democracy there. These problems includes the sharing of Ganga waters.

India and Bhutan

Bhutan is another small hilly kingdom whose defense requirements are the responsibility of India. India has contributed generously to the economic development of Bhutan which is strategically located as far as India’s defense exigencies are concerned.

India and Burma

There are no basic issues or differences required to be resolved between India and Burma.

Essay on Fashion

Fashion

Fashions came into vogue as a matter of social development in a society from one stage to another. In fact, they are the product of the environment of a community. As a community develops into civilization, its members come to develop certain ways of living. There is a gradual break in the traditional values giving ways to new ones in keeping with the spirits of time.

Rousseau, the French political thinker, was right in declaring that man was born free, but he was everywhere in chains. Man has always been a slave of traditions, customs, conventions, ceremonies and rituals. Human beings are also the slaves of changing fashions.

Fashions are transitory. They come like a wave and die out. What is fashionable today may not be so tomorrow. Anything which gains acceptability becomes fashionable.

Cinema was at one time a craze. People loved going to the cinema, watching movies which were being talked of. Regular movie-goers acquired a certain prestige value in social circles. This has gradually given way to the one hardly talks of visiting the cinema hall it is now in terms of cassettes and video libraries. Cassettes and video libraries gave way to Cable T.V. and T.V. gave way to CDs and VCDs, which is now considered fashionable and a status symbol.

The same applies to the theater, dance, music, concerts and ‘art’ exhibition. Many people belonging to upper classes go these places, not because they have real taste for or understanding of music and art but because they want to be ‘in the swim’. They would feel backward if they were not to visit these shows and seen there, and if they were not able to talk about these things afterwards in their respective circles.

However, in respect of fashions in dress, even people of modest means feel impelled to keep pace with changing fashions. In matters of dress, women are much greater slaves to fashion than men. In recent years, in India, feminine fashions have been changing rapidly and have been followed by vast numbers of women with an equal rapidity. Examples of tight-fitting clothes followed by loose dresses are a current vogue. In the West more and more women are taking to mini-skirts, the latest to appear on the fashion-scene being micro-minis.

Nor are men averse to fashions. Where male attire is concerned, we generally follow the western fashions blindly. The once-popular hippie-style of uncouth dressing is fast on the wane.

The worst-affected section of this tyranny of modern fashions is our school-and college-going student populace. Latest made dresses are the prevailing fashion among the large majority of them. With the exception of extremely poor students who cannot afford the luxury of fashions, almost all students regard it as an essential part of their duty to march with the times, and thus, appear up-to-date and modern. Sometimes they are ahead of the fashions and actually give the lead to other people in this respect.

Boys are seen dressed in expensive suits of the latest cut. They are skilled judges in the matter of dress and eye one another’s clothes with keen interest. Each tries to excel others in the beauty and design of his clothes. Critical remarks are freely made regarding classmates whose clothes do not fit them properly. Envious glances are cast upon a student whose clothes are striking in design and perfect in tailoring. Everyone aims at wearing his clothes to the best advantage and at producing a favorable impression upon his classmates. Students who are expensively dressed claim special privileges in the college because they think that their costly clothes are an additional qualification.

The results of this dandyism are terrible. Students pay no attention to class lectures because they keep adjusting their ties and handkerchiefs in the coat-pockets. They look appreciatively at their own nice-cut suits and are filled with a sort of self-satisfaction. The teachers are helpless in this matter, which results in an increase in the number of flops.

Female students go two steps further and consider that in trying to look fashionable, boys are trespassing upon the domain that rightfully belongs to girls. The females have a natural and in-born love for pretty dresses and college is the right place to show this love. They go to colleges dressed in clothes, designed to bring their figures into relief. Tight-fitting shirts are in vogue because their dresses give prominence to their anatomical proportions and curves. Dupatta is no more in use for the same good reason. Hair-style changes with the dress. Scents and perfumes are also used by these Juliet’s to excite their Romeos.

Such students evidently do not take interest in their studies. Going to college is a mere hobby or recreation for them, and examinations and class lectures an evil.

Fashions are more prevalent in metropolitan cities where modern mass media is the most sensitive. Diverse races, communities intermingle greatly at such a place. In such cities grows an international culture. Then such fashions penetrate into other areas of the country’s population. There is a continuous cross-breeding of fashions. Many fashions come into vogue, find ever increasing favour among the youth and then spread like an ‘epidemic’.

Movies also cast their maximum influence on the young boys and girls. A heroine wearing a new design is aped by the young school and college girls and a particular dress worn by a handsome hero is imitated by the boys. Firms involved in the manufacture of ready-made dresses and materials send their special designers to movies, so that they can observe patterns and designs to exploit the tastes of young folk.

The moralists feel that modern fashions are an encouragement to crime and rape and should be curbed and stopped. The exponents of fashions on the other hand feel that in a free society sex-exhibitionism, instead of encouraging crime, makes girls courageous and independent. One good result of fashions is that more and more girls are coming into open and taking up jobs, which were once exclusively meant for men. Today women are participating in national and international activities and working with men in all fields.

The earlier concept that fashions are responsible for debasing the society has undergone a change. They are considered a source of enlightenment. This is becoming quite an accepted norm in our society.

The desire to follow fashions is, no doubt, natural in the sophisticated world of today. But there are many people who have to follow them for fear of public opinion though they may not feel attracted to a particular fashion.

A wise person is one who does not ape fashions blindly. An individual approach is better but most times the hold of fashions is so strong that one inadvertently becomes a pray and slave to it.

Essay on Drought and Floods in India

Drought and Floods in India

Drought and floods play havoc with Indian agriculture. In India, agriculture has always been dependent on nature. It still remains highly sensitive to the vagaries of weather. Droughts in various parts of the country in recent years have sufficiently proved that if rain Gods decides to play truant with India, then the farmers can do nothing but helplessly watch their crops wither away. Although we no longer experience the kind of devastating famines which occurred during the British Raj – thanks to the agricultural productivity, sustained economic growth and food security system developed in the country – the agricultural output still remains at the mercy of natural forces.

The last few years have been very unkind to the farmers. While there is a serious drought in one part of the country, the other parts suffer untold misery due to abnormal rainfall resulting in floods. A run of four poor monsoons, freaky weather conditions culminated in one of the worst droughts in 1987 when out of 35 meteorological sub-divisions in the country 21 had deficient rainfall. It caused substantial crop damage and scarcity of drinking water. People in the rural areas, particularly the small farmers, had to face hardships.

In a country where 80% of its people live in rural areas and depends on agriculture for their sustenance, one can imagine how such natural calamities play havoc with their lives. They are driven to starvation as they have nothing to fall back on. Most resign themselves to their fate. Some decide to move to urban areas to look for work to feed their families. While the shock of monsoon failure is most severely felt by the people in the rural areas where wide spread crop losses cause distress and misery, abnormal rainfall in some years also causes immense damage to human life, property and crops through floods.

The sudden strain which is imposed on the economy by such massive drought causes a severe setback to the momentum of development. The decline in the water levels in important reservoirs, shortage of power supply for tube-well irrigation further put strain on agricultural production. Although the immediate impact of drought is invariably on agriculture and the rural people, the industrial sector is not immune to it. A poor monsoon leads to fall in agriculture production thus causing a shortage of raw materials specially for the agro-based industries; reduction in rural demand for industrial goods due to fall in income; increase in expenditure on food due to shortage and rise in prices thereby forcing the consumers to reduce spending on even articles of every day requirement. Since a large amount of money has to be diverted towards relief measures for drought victims, it leads to decline in investment in public sector and other development projects. It is altogether another matter that money allocated for relief measures hardly ever reaches the people it is meant for.

In the past, major droughts have been followed by recession in the industry. Industries like fertilizers, pesticides, farm machinery play a very significant role in modernizing agriculture. But fluctuations in agricultural production due to drought or floods adversely affect the demand for the goods produced by these units. However, over the years there has been a decline in the share of agriculture in the national income. Consequently there has been a decline in the adverse effect of fall in agricultural income on industrial sector. Although the adverse impact of drought on industrial production cannot be avoided altogether, the economy has become resilient enough to bear the setbacks like this.

Nevertheless, the plight of the common man really becomes pathetic due to increase in prices as a result of shortage in the supply of food and non-food commodities. Lower middle class, salaried class and the unskilled workers are worst affected. Small businessmen do not let this opportunity go to create artificial shortages and sell the articles in the black market. The harassed consumer is left with no choice but to pay the price. Since the income of the people does not increase in proportion to the rise in inflationary trends, there is a fall in the savings, as people have to spend more to procure articles of daily necessity. Those employed in government and semi-government jobs get some relief in the form of dearness allowance, but the self employed and the workers in the private sector do not get such financial relief to offset the increase in prices.

The plight of the rural people, more particularly of the small and marginal farmers is really pitiable. Drought causes severe dislocation of everyday life. Whatever meager resources they have are soon exhausted on meeting daily expenses. In States such as Rajasthan, Gujarat and Maharashtra, where rains failed successively for four years, not only did the agricultural production completely collapse, but the declining water table led to an acute shortage of drinking water as well. Hence, people had to face extremely difficult living conditions. Cattle started dying due to lack of fodder and water. In some areas, one even heard of people adopting extreme measures like selling their children or committing suicide.

The Government has adopted a number of measures to create additional avenues of employment and income, assure adequate supplies of essential commodities and drinking water, provide additional power to areas irrigated by tube-wells and pump-sets to boost rabi production, supply fodder for the cattle. Financial assistance is also extended by the banks on priority basis to persons affected by droughts to enable them to undertake a second sowing, raise an alternative short duration crop or grow much needed fodder for the cattle. Any programs are started to provide employment to the drought affected people. Essential commodities like food-grains, edible oils, controlled cloth, etc. are made available through public distribution system. Efforts are made to keep the prices of essential commodities under control.

In 1973, Drought Prone Area Programme was started as a long term measure for restoration of ecological balance and optimum utilization of land, water, live-stock and human resources and to mitigate effects of drought. It is being implemented in 615 blocks in 91 districts of 13 states from 1985-86 covering about 5.36 lakhs sq. km area. It covered about 7 to 7.5 crores people.

Almost 1/8th of India’s total area has been declared as flood prone. Three-phased – immediate, short-term and long–term – flood control programme was launched in 1954. Since then about Rs. 1,763 crores have been spent on flood control till the end of Sixth Plan. An outlay of Rs. 947 crores was approved for the Seventh Plan for this purpose. The flood control measures taken include construction of new embankments, drainage channels, town protection works and raising the level of low lying villages. In addition anti-sea erosion measures to protect the coastline have also been taken up. Government has also set up a flood forecasting organization to issue advance warnings about impending floods so as to alert rescue and relief agencies. In 1989, damage suffered on account of floods was about Rs. 2,380 crores.

However what is needed is a long term strategy to free agriculture from the uncertainties of weather. Droughts and floods will continue to cause agony and hardship to people. Even after 40 years of planned development, about 70% of total cropped area is still dependent on rainfall. To overcome this dependency, methods should be adopted for better water management. Research should be conducted on improving methods and techniques for the development of rain fed and dry land agriculture. Unless all these plans and programs are implemented in earnest, the droughts and floods will continue to play havoc with the life of the people.

Short Paragraph on Importance of Newspapers

Importance of Newspapers

Newspapers are a very important part of our life. They bring news from all corners of the world. We can know the current news of our country and of the other countries of the world.
Newspapers contain news about politics, trade, games and sports, films and theaters and many other things. T

Newspapers are published early in the morning. There are some evening newspapers as well. Thus, newspapers keep us updated about the day’s events.
Newspapers also reflect public opinion. They make us aware of our surroundings and our society. We get news both national and international. Articles on health, science, agriculture, industry etc. increase our knowledge and help us in our day-to-day life. Newspaper also carries advertisements. Truly, newspapers have become part and parcel of our everyday life.

Short Biography of Satyajit Ray

Satyajit Ray

Satyajit Ray was born on the 2nd May, 1921. His father was Sukumar Ray, the great composer of verse. His grandfather was the well known writer, Upendra Kishore Ray Chowdhury. Satyajit Ray passed the Matriculation Examination from Ballygung Govt. High School and graduated from the University of Calcutta in 1940.

The first film of Satyajit Ray was “Pather Panchali”. This film made him famous not only in our own country but also in other parts of the world. His name was then on every lip. Since then, he successfully directed film like ‘Apur Sansar’. ‘Aparajita’, ‘Jalsaghar’, ‘Gupi Gyne Bagha Byne’ and many other films. These films won great awards for him. The greatest of all such awards was the ‘Oscar’ conferred upon him by the Academy of Motion Pictures of New York.

This great son of Bengal breathed his last on the 23rd April, 1992. His great films have made him immortal. His name and fame will never sink in to oblivion.

Short Paragraph on My Favorite Game

My Favorite Game – Cricket

Of all outdoor games, cricket attracts me most. It is my favorite game. I like to watch cricket match on T.V. I am also a member of my school cricket team.

India won the Prudential World Cup at Lords in 1983. It is a popular game in India.

Cricket is played in large oval ground. Two teams play the game. Each team has eleven players. Each team has a captain. After the toss, one team goes in to bat. The other team fields in turn. The batsman defends and attacks the deliveries of the bowlers. The team that score more runs are declared winners.

The game may be one-day match or five-day test match. The players need physical fitness to play all day long. Cricket develops the team spirit among the players. I like Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly most. They are the cricket stars of India.