Social Scientist. v 1, no. 2 (Sept 1972) p. 15.


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UTSA PATNAIK

Development of Capitalism in Agriculture—I

DEVELOPMENTS in the Indian Agrarian scene in recent years have provoked rather diverse assesments by academic economists—as diverse indeed as their political viewpoints— regarding their implications for the future development of the Indian economy. Broadly speaking, three distinct types of ! analyses have emerged.

Firstly, there are those technocrats who are fairly optimistic about the spread of new cultivation techniques and use of new inputs, and assume that India's food problem can be solved in the foreseeable future provided progress continues in the technical field. They regard the poor harvest years from 1965 to 1967 as exceptional, and deny that there has occurred any deceleration in the growth rate of agricultural output in the 1960's as compared to the 1950's. They appear to envisage a generalisation to the mass of;

the peasantry of the use of new purchased inputs, at present confined to a small section of it : this at any rate is the only premise on which their optimistic view is tenable.1 This view is challenged by the second group of cautious empiricists,2 who point to the technical limitations upon the rapid spread of the new techniques (principally the difficulties of expanding the area under assured irrigation) as well



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