Ramtanu Maitra is a regular columnist with the Executive Intelligence Review (EIR), a news weekly published from Washington DC. He writes columns for Asia Times of Hong Kong, Frontier Post of Peshawar and some other newspapers in Asia on South Asian political economy and Asian security. He has written on terrorism in a number of publications in the United States and India.
India’s unwillingness to rejuvenate its vast agricultural sector, by not pushing through water management programs, power, education, etc., verges on criminal neglect. But, there is a lesson in India’s story for most other nations as well. Not a single nation on Earth, during the last two decades in particular, has directed its energy and resources to build the foundation of an ever-growing agricultural sector and thus, to ensure food security to its own people. As a result, the world teeters on the brink of famine, ready to strike any time in some part of the world.
April 15—In the cacophony of numbers about India’s growth and how it “managed” its economy with flying colors, amidst the ruins of a global financial collapse, what remains unspoken is the fact that food prices are soaring like never before. Neither Prime Minister Manmohan Singh nor his agricultural minister, Sharad Pawar, a sugarcane tycoon, has anything to say beyond reiterating over and over again that the cause is the drought of 2009, and that the crisis will blow away soon once the Winter harvest hits the market.