188.8.131.52 Family Farms
Family farms have, in most cases, approximately 10-30 acres
of irrigated land which are cultivated by the family members-at
the upper level with the help of one or two agricultural labourers
not belonging to the family. Among the family farmers are
quite a large number of tenants who have sufficient land,
lease security, and power of decision in economic matters.
This group represents the upper stratum of the village society,
has sufficient income, and enjoys prestige on account of landed
property and of its belonging to a distinguished caste. It
controls the village policies, the local cooperatives, and
similar institutions.Tthis group fully adopted the new technology
regarding seed and fertilizers insofar as it had irrigated
land. However, these people first began to participate one
or two years after the small landlords. They had less access
to seed and information; and because of their lower capacity
to take risks, they wanted to wait and see what the results
would be in practice. The high yield increases promptly convinced
them. The further development is similar, in its main traits,
to that experienced by the small landlords. They too bored
tube wells, purchased tractors, and became well off. They
often distinguished themselves by efficient and intensive
However, in comparison, the results, here, were not so marked.
The fact that had started at a later stage caused a lag of
one to two years and did not allow them to achieve maximum
prices in the time of seed shortage. They were also faced
with much more problems than the larger landowners; with regard
to obtaining a supply of seed and fertilizers on time, power
cuts, and lack of water. The problem of obtaining loans prevented
them for a while from purchasing tractors.
On the other hand, they could make up for some loss. Their
family relationships with the owners of small plots resulted
in their being especially successful when buying or renting
additional land. The son was often a more careful tractor
driver than an agricultural labourer would have been. Often,
to utilize their tractors to capacity, they did the ploughing
for their neighbours in return for payment and, thus, earned
an additional cash income. Since their fields rarely adjoined
but lay between the fields of other farmers, they could sell
water from their wells. Especially in the beginning, as there
was little competion, extremely high prices were paid for
ploughing and water, and "tractor lords" and 'water
lords" soon became commonly used terms.
Due to the Green Revolution, in which it had a share, this
group became well off and was fully integrated in the market
economy. Most of the group proved to be dynamic and flexible.
It is true that commercial considerations played a role in
the decision concerning the farms, but excesses caused by
commercialization are rare as compared to the small landlords.
However, they also went through a process in which quite a
bit of differentiation took place, and a small group has remained
at the old level.