“The Indian urban and rural life is viewed as the two faces of the same coin. They are mutually interdependent and both have a greater impact of globalization.” In the light of the given statement, compare and contrast implications of Globalization on rural and urban society in India and examine how they are different from each other. (15 Marks)

Mentors Comments:

  • http://www.ijemr.net/DOC/GlobalisationAndItsEffectOnRuralIndia(54-56).pdf
  • http://www.scienceandnature.org/IJEMS-Vol5(4)-Oct2014/IJEMS%20Vol5(4)-8.pdf
  • The question is in the context of the Effects of globalization on Indian society and more so specifically with respect to its effect on urban and rural society.
  • The answer must first elaborate on what is Globalization, what are the causes of it, its impact and implications on rural and urban India. Compare and contrast each of these implications and examine how they are different from each other.
  • Briefly discuss the importance of globalization and its implications in general in your intro.
  • The theme of the main body will be this: The impact of globalization on Indian and rural life has a tremendous influence which is both positive as well as negative. India is getting global recognition and slowly moving forward to become a major economic and political strength. Thus, the answer has to clearly elucidate that globalization is a complex phenomenon and its impact on rural and urban life clearly. It has a very profound impact on both Indian rural and urban life. As a result, globalization has shown remarkable growth in urbanization and rural development.
  • Conclude with a positive note that Globalization has proved to be an empowering entity in Indian scenario.

Answer:

Globalization is an international platform for maintaining evenness in the living mode of people all over the world. Globalization is the result of the interchange of worldly views, opinions and the various aspects of the culture everywhere around the world. The impact of globalization on Indian and rural life has a tremendous influence which is both positive as well as negative. The Indian urban and rural life is viewed as the two faces of the same coin. They are mutually interdependent and both have a greater impact on globalization.

Impact of globalization on Indian rural society

    • Positives:
      • Commercialization of agriculture: There is an increased trend of commercialization from sustenance farming. This has been successful only with farmers having large tracts of land.
      • Expansion of agro-industries: Increased crop yield has led to development of agro-processing industries which help in adding value to the products and increasing their shelf life. E.g.; Tomato Ketchup, Potato chips etc.
      • Wider use of information, communication and technologies: Agricultural extension techniques like Kisan TV, sms about weather conditions has helped farmers plan better. Initiatives like e-Nam have helped farmers get better prices in certain areas.
      • Increased Mechanization, better inputs: Mechanization like use of tractors, harvesters, tillers has eased the job. High yield variety seeds, fertilizers have given better yield as seen during Green Revolution
      • Socio-economic development: With telemedicine and tele education, people are able to access the health and education facilities at the remotest areas. Adult literacy has helped in fighting for their rights.
      • MSMEs: There has been a rise of MSMEs with women entrepreneurs heading it.
    • Negatives:
      • Changes in Land-Use patterns
      • Internal labour migration: Labour migration to cities from rural areas in search of employment was a common phenomenon. This was for various reasons especially for a luxurious life, handsome salary and for numerous job opportunities.
      • Increasing privatization of resources: Rural population is still suffering from unemployment as rural labour is mostly uneducated and unskilled. Machines and latest technologies have reduced the number of manpower a lot
      • Loss of jobs and Displacement: Due to mechanization, women are the worst sufferers. When big-ticket projects like Dams, Roads, and Mining come up, people are displaced making them internal refugees.
      • Increased inequality: Regional and sectional disparity due to only a few reaping the benefits.
      • No Behavioural changes: Open defecation still present, caste discriminations are still prevalent.

Impact of globalization on Indian urban society

Positives:

  • Increased Urbanization: It has been estimated that by 2050 more than 50% of India’s population will live in cities. The boom of the services sector and city-centric job creation has led to increasing rural to urban migration.
  • Increased job opportunities: Due to the inflow of MNCs, FDIs, people have a wide choice of job opportunities provided they have the requisite skills. Startups like Ola, Swiggy etc. have revolutionized the Gig-Economy. Development of Industries have also provided jobs.
  • Higher Per capita income: Employees are paid well albeit lesser than the global pay levels.
  • Enhanced lifestyle: Due to higher PCI and wide array of facilities available from which the consumer can choose. It has raised the quality of life of many.
  • Better infrastructure: In terms of education, health, transport available to people. This has, in turn, enhanced the agglomeration of economies leading to industrial belts, IT parks, SEZ, CEZ etc.
  • Rapid Digitization: For faster and ease of connectivity, most of the services are digitized. This also increases the awareness of citizens in terms of rights, happenings around the world etc. On the Governmental side, there is more accountability and transparency and faster delivery of services.

Negatives:

  • Family Structure: The increasing migration coupled with financial independence has led to the breaking of joint families into nuclear ones. The western influence of individualism has led to an aspirational generation of youth. Concepts of national identity, family, job and tradition are changing rapidly and significantly.
  • Marriage Values: Similarly, marriages have also lost their values. It is very much evident from the increasing number of divorce cases and the extra-marital affairs reported every now and then.
  • McDonaldization: A term denoting the increasing rationalization of the routine tasks of everyday life. It becomes manifested when a culture adopts the characteristics of a fast-food restaurant. McDonaldization is a reconceptualization of rationalization, or moving from traditional to rational modes of thought, and scientific management.
  • Walmartization: A term referring to profound transformations in regional and global economies through the sheer size, influence, and power of the big-box department store Walmart. It can be seen with the rise of big businesses which have nearly killed the small traditional businesses in our society. 
  • Rise in Lifestyle diseases: Due to reduced physical activity, increased habits of liquor and smoking etc.
  • Urban Sprawl: Increasing slums, unplanned urbanizations are on the rise which is a ticking time-bomb.

It is difficult to say that the impact of globalization has been totally positive or totally negative. It has been both. Each impact mentioned above can be seen as both positive as well as negative. However, it becomes a point of concern when an overwhelming impact of globalization can be observed on the Indian rural and urban society.

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