Globalization Is A Great Leveller: Patterns Of Exploitation And Corruption Now Become Same In India And Peru!

Bambamarca:  A Beautiful Place In Peru Haunted By Illegal Mining! Such places would become history!

Bambamarca: A Beautiful Place In Peru Haunted By Illegal Mining! Such Places Would Become History!


Globalization has reduced differences in geographical terms. But, at the same time, it has also changed the geography in a crude way by mindless destruction of flora and fauna. The sad thing about whole affair is that the stories depicting better aspects of globalization do reach us regularly but the negative sides either get censored or, for that matter, fail to get extensive coverage. Just to take an example, the commercials promote McDonald’s pizzas and burgers but are there enough advertisements which highlight the negative effect of consuming them?  Globalization believes in the fact that “all that glitters is gold”. It has nothing to do with pains of exploited workers who work in MNCs like a caged parrot, having no power to execute their discretion other than one serving the interests of global masters.

Sometimes back S Ambika, a 22 year old woman factory-worker, permanently employed at Nokia Telecom Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Sriperumbadur in Kancheepuram district of Tamil Nadu, got killed in a tragic way when she tried to repair the jam inside the loader machine. It proved to be fatal exercise for her since she was not a technician, but she still came to do that to meet the production targets. A wait for the technicians meant slowing the pace of production! That’s one of the stories, which reveal in sad way the plight of people working in MNCs.

Vaibhav Mani Tripathi, a by-product of Jawahar Lal University (JNU), in his research paper titled, “Democracy and globalization: Are they really compatible”, highlights the ways and means employed by the MNCs to ensure growth in democracies across the globe. ” In democracies of third world, which are new and have lesser degree of accountable governments; methods of bribery, and loot system were adopted by MNCs, in order to get established. By dealing in such ways MNCs get some illegal relaxations and manage to cut cost by getting cheapest labour and denying rules of pollution control etc. In democracies, which are most established and transparent, MNCs change their techniques. By promising high taxes and employment to countrymen, they demand for special industrial estates or special economic zones. This is the biggest irony of Globalization. They demand tax relaxations in order to get established and they promise government to pay huge aid for fighting poverty, pollution and social evils like AIDS!”  

One having a close look at the progress stories of various countries, especially the nations trying to emerge as economic giants, one would find that exploitation of workers along with rapid destruction of ecological balance are the integral part of every such story! Before I contrast the happenings in two different countries, India and Peru, to highlight the woes of globalization, I wish to highlight grave tale of negligence which suggests that so-called progress is not only destroying cherished values but also destroying cultural artifacts. One of Belize’s largest Mayan pyramids, which remained in existence for more than 2,300 years, got destroyed by a construction crew involved in a road project.The company used the structure’s limestone walls as road fill! In fact, Time Magazine reports that “much of the monumental architecture at Belize’s San Estevan site, which dates back to 800 B.C., was bulldozed during the late 1990s to provide material for roads.”

From Belize in Central America, now, let’s move to Peru in South America to notice the impact of gold rush in amazon! The lust for gold in other nations keeps increasing but the heavy price other nations pays to satiate the lust never becomes subject of discussion in mainstream media. True, there is lack of jobs and illegal gold mining ensures survival of large number of families but then how can one ignore the dangerous consequences of deforestation in Amazon? A report issued by NASA says that ‘with the price of gold skyrocketing (360 percent in 10 years from 2001 to 2011), unlicensed miners began pouring into Peru’s Madre de Dios. They cleared 12,500 acres from the forest between 2003–2009. Landsat images showed local deforestation increasing at a rate of 26 percent per year.”

The report also highlights the fatal consequences of mercury used in the mining process. The extracts of mercury which after vaporization turn airborne contaminate the water resources, which later enter into the bodies of residents.  A very recent study suggests “unsafe levels of the toxic metal in almost 80% of adults and 60% of fish sold at local markets” in Peru. The Peru’s mining department taking stern steps against illegal mining began raiding Madre de Dios. That has led to tense formation between miners, environmental activists and the authorities. However, it appears that such strict steps are now a necessity  to reduce the loss of forest area in amazon, which has already lost 18,000 hectares. Needless to state, that Peruvian amazon is remarkable for   its large degree of biodiversity. 

Farmers Protesting In Peru!

Farmers Protesting In Peru!

India is also facing severe consequences caused by deforestation. One of the major causes of deforestation has been depletion of forests to extract minerals of various types. Expansion of agriculture, timber harvesting and shifting cultivation are some of the prime reasons for loss of forest area in India. However, another grim consequence has been displacement of tribal people, leading to militant movement like Naxalism. It establishes something quite well that pattern of exploitation in India and Peru is one and the same and in both the places original inhabitants are in direct conflict with the authorities. If Peru is tormented by illegal gold mining, India is haunted by illegal coal mining and diamond mining! The “Coalgate scam” has clearly revealed that how sensitive rulers of this nation have been while dealing with mineral resources of this nation. In other words, globalization has ensured huge profits for government and private bodies but the same profit never got distributed to tribal people-ones who were responsible for protecting these resources. On the contrary, they got displaced and faced bullets instead of receiving rewards for their indigenous efforts. Now if we see such developments in light of environmental issues, like erratic weather pattern in Indian subcontinent, the situation is pretty grim.

Even Children Protested In Nandigram!

Even Children Protested In Nandigram!

It’s good that people, the ones affected by government’s poorly planned projects, have learnt to come in conflict with the authorities. Nandigram bears testimony to the fact that the Special Economic Zones, not taking care of interests of people in judicious way, shall always meet fierce opposition from people. The farmers in Uttar Pradesh also entered in violent protests in year 2011 over land acquisition policy framed by the state government. The trend pattern involved is that big corporate houses either forcibly acquire the land or they come to acquire it in fraudulent means by keeping in dark the actual content of the deal. The Allahabad High Court staying Ganga Expressway project, expressed deep anguish the way it got initiated without having environmental clearance! This project involving JP Group required acquisition of huge lands situated in the alluvial belt and still no homework was done on part of state government.

Even Indian Farmers Are Protesting!

Even Indian Farmers Are Protesting!

One can notice that how rules get manipulated to benefit big corporations, caring a damn for the interests of people. In fact, the concerns related with environment also get neglected. It’s not hard to decipher that two nations even if they are situated  in different continents could still exhibit similar pattern of exploitation and corruption. Globalization has not only roped in similar lifestyle patterns across the globe but also introduced identical methods of corruption. And who is the victim? The underprivileged, who never gets a chance to visit McDonald, who never gets a chance to buy gold ornaments, and who also never gets a chance to drive SUV on Expressways!  Noam Chomsky sounds quite right when he says that ‘  Market discipline is perfect for poor people in El Salvador, or working mothers in the slums. They have to learn responsibility, but not the rich and the powerful. They have to be protected.”

References:

Madhumita Dutta And Venkatachandrika Radhakrishnan: Ambika’s Death; An Article Published In Kafila.

Ollie John: Road Workers Destroy Ancient Mayan Pyramid; Time Magazine 

Cecilia Jamasmie: Mercury pollution linked to illegal gold mining in Peru reaches lethal levels

NASA: Gold Mining In The Peruvian Amazon

The Hindu: Protest against power plant in U.P. hits 1000th day

The Economic Times: UP agitation: Farmers protest continue on Day 2; four dead

Noam Chomsky: Can Civilization Survive Capitalism?

Noam Chomsky:  Globalization: The New Face of Capitalism

“Democracy and globalization: Are they really compatible”- An article by Vaibhav Mani Tripathi in Aavartan.

See The Impact Of Illegal Mining In Goa!

See The Impact Of Illegal Mining In Goa!

Pics Credit:

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9 responses

  1. Many thanks to these readers for dropping by on this post…

    Himanshu B.Pandey, Siwan, Bihar; Vaibhavm Mani Tripathi, Ranchi, Jharkhand; Shikha Shukla, Jaipur, Rajasthan; Swami Prabhu Chaitanya, Patna, Bihar; Dharmendra Sharma, UAE; Kamlesh Sinha; Mihir Sharmaji; Ajay Singh, Ballia, Uttar Pradesh; Anjeev Pandey, Nagpur, Maharashtra; Pushkar Sinha, Hazipur, Bihar; Rajesh Hasija Raaz, Ahmedabad, Gujarat; Men’s Rights, Bangalore, Karantaka; Prathvipal Singh and Dubeyji, Ranchi, Jharkhand.

  2. Radhakrishna Lambu, Bangalore, Karnataka, said:

    This is how CAPITALISM works….: I have been researching on why india’s industrialization did not happen, why british came here, since my class 10th, though this meant , not able to concentrate on my board exams, then, when I joined job, again, this came up, because, by that time, i got to know that what exactly is the wrong with india. Then slowly and steadily, I again started my research work, then I got all I wanted to know, this is all CAPITALISM, nothing more, nothing less…And not only the industralized nation does this, they have there agent, or compradors, who support them. they always worry about there master nation’s economy, their citizen. I think you have got where I am hitting…he work of compradors is to give the resources, be it raw materials or animals, or even human labors to these vultures, who in turn, exploits…

    ************

    Author’s Response:

    I worked really hard to get this research-oriented report published…So it’s pleasing to find your remark🙂

  3. Niketan Magadh said:

    exploited workers… NO… the workers are their on their own wishes… they can leave whenever they want to… but do you have other options for them… our country has become the breeding ground of cheap labour… from where are you going to get all of them a decent job… reduce the population and most of the things will automatically get fixed…

    Author’s Response:

    You are right…I have always felt population control is very necessary to improve the standards of life ..However, the issue is related more to making of profit at any cost, overriding all other human concerns, environmental concerns etc.. Read the article and you will find that to ensure limited interests, the basic ethical principles get flouted….I am more concerned with it…It has led to significant loss in nearly all terms..

  4. Niketan Magadh said:

    Business: Only target is to make profits and that is correct. if businesses start to follow moralities apart from following legalities it will die

    government: creates Labor Laws which the business has to follow and that should be the moot point. make you labor laws strong enough that no business can exploit your countrymen.

    employee: the sheep or asses who have to work as per their Master’s wishes

    Only Rule that works: Demand and Supply

    you should blame the Labor laws in your country instead of the business which is at least providing your countrymen bread and butter… without this business… these employees have got nowhere else to go… accepted that we could have developed indigenous businesses… BUT we have NOT been able to do so due to whatever reasons…

    Author’s Response:

    ” Business: only target is to make profits and that is correct. “….

    I do not agree with this concept…The people like Goenka, GD Birla and JRD Tata, to name a few, set very good precedents…What prevented others from following the same principles?

    Probably, that’s why it’s said, “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”🙂

  5. Niketan Magadh said:

    Arvind Ji: Tata and Birla are Indian companies. But the foreign employers are here only for cheap labor. If they start to follow Moralities and Sympathies etc. apart from the set Legalities, how will they make profit. And if they cannot make profit they will simply move towards other Labor heavens like China or Phillipines or anywhere else. My question is why are Labor laws too weak to curb the foreigners.

    I would request you to keep God out of this and NOT use Quotations as Quotations are always misguiding without the context in which it was ACTUALLY made.

    Another request is to please please please NOT copy this discussion to anywhere else.

    ************************

    Author’s Response:

    Nowhere God got introduced…The quote hints at the issue of ethics…Conversations get pasted on original link because it’s never that easy to trace conversations on Facebook after certain period of time..Being on original link, it not only allows the readers to develop many other perspectives but also makes search better at a later stage..At least, in my eyes, the views expressed by the readers are as important as the content of original post..So relax! They do not get posted elsewhere other than on the original page of the article..In fact, I always request the readers to make comments on original post..That way it’s also easier to take note of them…

    I do not agree that foreign businessmen should not subscribe to ethical values..Labour laws do need reforms ..But what I really feel is that trade unions representing the cause of workers should be more informed than relying on rhetoric!!! What prevented the various unions to remain alert?

  6. Radhakrishna Lambu, Bangalore, Karnataka, said:

    That’s why I say, that how our ancients had realized the sinister design of these materialistic, and gave so many rituals/cultures, to protect the animals, because, if we see today, all the products indirectly or directly uses animal skin or natural sources. All industrialized states get cow/bull skin to manufacture leather purses, fish skin for lipstick, clothes again cotton, produced by silk worms, so these are the reason of invasions, to loot natural resources.

  7. Subu Subramaniam said:

    Before globalisation I was ONLY worried about some women. Now I am worried about ALL women…

    **************

    Author’s Response:

    So globalization increased the domain of concerns🙂

  8. Vaibhav Mani Tripathiji, Ranchi, Jharkhand, said:

    Thanks Arvind K Pandey ji for mentioning my article in the suggested reading column along with great people like Naom Chomsky…

    ***********

    Author’s Response:

    I was not feeling okay on being not able to write the review due to so many unavoidable reasons..Now having mentioned this article in one of my important posts, I feel I have redeemed myself! It’s a well written article, and thus, I not only came to use some portion of it in my article besides mentioning in the suggested reading column..

  9. Snehal Acharya, Chandigarh, Punjab, said:

    Very true sir…

    Author’s Response:

    Many thanks..

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