Ad Here  
May
June
July
August
September
October
 
 
TVS Srichakra plans capacity expansion Maruti – for young buyers TVS Automobile invests Rs.75 crore in start-up firms Nissan exit shouldn’t affect ALL Michelin to double Chennai capacity Housing demand revival Ode to Ratan Tata L & T’s floating dock for navy The gainers and the losers Sundram Fasteners rejigs international Record two-wheeler sales Land wars Yamaha unveils scooter boutique Carnival Films acquiring 3000 screens pan India Smartphone onslaught by Chinese brands Ponni Sugars (Erode) Ltd: not so sweet 2012-13 E.I.D Parry (India) Ltd: another sweet year Gamesa to set up a plant in Nellore TN government keen on revival of operations at Nokia complex Tata Steel, ThyssenKrupp sign MoU to merge European units L & T set bigger ambitions in defence business Daimler grows sales and share in India LVB posts 31 per cent growth in Q1 net profit Tata Motors charts investments in PV and CV businesses New India Assurance posts impressive show CAPITAL NOTES Welcome focus to improve rural India... Toyota and Suzuki to introduce EVs in India by 2020 TI Cycles plans retail expansion to drive sales for premium bicycles He excels in the nuts and bolts of entrepreneurship Shriram Life clocks more than Rs.1000 crore premium in 2015-16 Tata Motors aims to be among the Top 3 global CV & PV firm Tata Motors joins compact SUV bandwagon with Nexon Wabco launches safety system Increasing market share Titan Company – sales recovery to kick in ITC – steep excise hike From the toughest to the best year RoC in the dock... PSU non-life firms seek to protect share Hindalco – re-rating Sivasankaran enters taxi space to take on Uber and Ola L&T profit up by 11 per cent Forging industry worried over lower supply of steel and its price Kone India eyes further growth in elevator market Daimler’s truck exports from Chennai cross 5000 units AL wins Deming prize again The unexpected exit Consolidating leadership position in smartphones Dish TV – subscriber additions encouraging AL secures orders for 3600 buses ITC chairman calls for policy impetus to transform agriculture Right to privacy – now it’s fundamental! A welcome initiative-even critics are recognised Hyundai India achieves 7 mn production at Chennai factory Tata gets 4-star rating for Zest V-Guard launches app-enabled water heater system When small is not so beautiful… Bajaj Finserv – Q1: fare well HPCL plans Rs.61,000 crore capex over 5-years Is this a generation gap? IOB on turnaround path 29 per cent jump in TCS revenues PPP model for infrastructure development Aurobindo Pharmacy: good turnaround Chinese smart phones flourish in small towns too! Preparing for the next growth curve Eyes strong growth in 2016-17 AL introduces Guru & Partner A niche in FMCG business... L&T bags the Mumbai Trans-harbour link order Emami – a new growth mantra Are they really independent? Back in growth mode Smooth sailing of SAIL Vellayan is back, after 150 days Mercedes-Benz sales continue to zoom Rane targets Rs.5500 crore topline by 2018-19 Hyundai to focus on SUVs and AMT variants Tata Motors bets on new launches M & M unveils driverless technology for tractors Solar installations exceed 2015 capacity in five months Singur minus Nano – victory or folly? It takes two to tango Last stages
 
Welcome focus to improve rural India...
It is an interesting and necessary initiative. Engineers without Borders (EWB) is a global organisation in which engineers, along with under-grad students in engineering, lend their expertise to serve rural India.

EWB, which originated in the US and has chapters in several countries, has been active in India as well. Engineering professionals have set up chapters in several colleges and extend their knowledge and expertise to enrich the life of rural India. The focus is on sanitation, water, energy, roads and education.

A two-day conference of EWB was recently organised at IIT-M.

The timing is quite opportune: on 02 October. Prime Minister Modi launched the Swachh Bharat (clean India) campaign. There is the prospect of such a campaign getting funded through the mandate for companies to set apart at least two per cent of their profits under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

In 2005, I presented at the Purdue University, USA, several factors that lend for India emerging a strong food bowl of the world.  These included large arable land of around 400 million acres,  round-the-year agriculture season,  rich biodiversity, a strong pool of scientists and engineers and, most important, very low levels of productivity.

I observed a disconnect between the urban and rural economy. I cite a few instances :  

One, ISRO has mapped land resources in detail through satellite imaging. But these are not available to the average farmer.

Two, the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU) provides data relating to weather,  crop nurturing, crop protection and market price information. These are available for every part of the state. The weather information provides temperature, humidity, rainfall and a whole lot of connected information for a week ahead. Likewise, the prices of agriculture commodities in several markets are readily available. Efforts are also made to provide this information through the cell phone. But such information is not available to the average farmer.

Three, there is the dearth of male farm labour in Tamil Nadu. There is drudgery and pain involved in attending to several simple tasks like pruning or cutting out weeds. The farmers continue to use the sickle for centuries. Engineers can help introduce rechargeable electric saws that can reduce drudgery and enormously improve productivity. In the developed countries hundreds of such simple gadgets are available. EWB can adopt these and familiarise these to our farmers.

EWB can help the rural folk to access Internet and make use of such precious and useful information readily available.  Their expertise can be utilised in the purification of water and in sanitation. These alone can reduce widespread incidence of communicable diseases in rural areas.

IIT-M Director Dr Bhaskar Ramamurthy has been urging on harnessing solar power for agriculture and domestic consumption. This, he says, can reduce 50 per cent of the current consumption of power used by these two segments and thus help meet the serious problem of energy shortage.  Massive use of such technology will also help reduce costs.

Elango Rangaswamy, an engineer and a scientist at CSIR, resigned his job and applied his expertise to enrich the life of the villagers at Kuthambakkam village.  In less than two decades he has made the village self-sufficient and a model, vastly enhancing rural employment, jobs and quality of life.  The average family income of the farmers has increased from around Rs 3000 to over Rs 25,000 p.m. There is a well-integrated community life. The Panchayat has empowered the villagers and made a success of decentralised self-governance. EWB can help replicate this model.

Think of the power of youth. In Tamil Nadu alone there are about 550 engineering colleges and over 1000   arts and science colleges. EWB should endeavour to harness this resource base and power of this wonderful force.  They should direct this energies to improve the living standards of rural India.

Author :
Reported On :
Sector :
Shoulder :
RELATED NEWS
ABOUT IE
IE, the business magazine from south was launched in 1968 and pioneered business journalism in south. Through the 45 years IE has been focusing on well-presented and well-researched articles. When giants in the industry stumbled to keep pace with the digital revolution, IE stayed affixed embracing technology.
Read more
 
PRIVACY POLICY
Economist Communications Ltd is committed to ensuring that your privacy is protected.
Read more
TERMS AND CONDITIONS
You agree that your use of this Website and the purchase of the magazine will be governed by these terms and conditions.
Read more
 
CONTACT US
S-15, Industrial Estate,
Guindy,
Chennai - 600 032.
PHONE: +91 44 22501236
EMAIL: indecom1968@gmail.com