ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Character of the Indian Farmers’ Movement

The Emerging Face of Transformative Politics in India: Farmers’ Movement by Amit Bhaduri, New Delhi: Aakar Books, 2022; pp 84, `225.

The book under review by economist Amit Bhaduri is an addition to the recent publications on the Indian Farmers’ Movement (IFM) that was sparked by the union government’s announcement of the three Farm Laws in 2020. The centralised farm laws aimed at liberalising and der­egulating the Indian agricultural markets created fears of corporate control and eventual dissolving of the public distribution system (PDS). The IFM, as it has commonly come to be referred, has rightly generated interest and hope, more so after its success in reversing the farm laws, across different sections and audiences, both within India and outside. The author joins others who consider the IFM as the first major mass resi­stance against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led union government and its corporate-friendly policies, since it came to power in 2014. Available writings on the IFM span across journalistic, biographical, and academic—all showcasing a renewed interest in interpreting the new phase of agrarian mobilisations and what is actually happening in the Indian countryside. This focus on agrarian issues is a welcome change when Indian agriculture continues to employ 45% of the country’s workforce, which, in the last three decades, has largely been relegated under the stylised headlines of agrarian crisis and farmers’ suicides.

The book is a collection of 11 articles written between December 2020 and February 2022, and were previously published in various newspapers and ­social media outlets as opinion pieces. The blurb of the book says that it was written in a “campaign mode,” alluding that they were meant to generate popular awareness and support for the issues at hand through the course of the IFM. In the foreword, Bhaduri calls the book as a “documentation of the mood of the time.”

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Updated On : 28th Aug, 2023
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