What is ‘putting out’ system?
Answer: It is a system whereby the merchant supplies raw material and receives the finished product. The merchant, based on the orders at hand, distributes work among the weavers. The weavers get the yarn from the merchant and also supply him the cloth.
What are the benefits and drawbacks of a market?
Answer: Benefits of market: It is because of the market that people get an opportunity to work and earn. They are able to sell their produce/finished product. Whether it is the small farmer, weaver or the merchant and exporter; a market exists for all of them.
Drawbacks of Market: Market are always one-sided. In other words, it is always the rich and the influential that gain maximum from the market. They own large factories, set up big shops, etc. They exploit the poor workers by overburdening them and paying them very low wages.
How does a weaver benefit from the putting out system?
Answer: The putting out system benefits the weavers in the following ways:
Define a ginning mill.
Answer: A ginning mill is a factory where seeds are removed from cotton bolls.
How does a cooperative function?
Answer: In a co-operative, people with common interests come together and work for mutual benefit.
Who is an exporter?
Answer: An exporter is a person who sells goods to foreign countries.
Define profit. How is it calculated?
Answer: Profit, also called gain is the amount that is left after deducting the costs. For example; if a trader sold a cloth for Rs 90 and incurred costs amounting to Rs 40, we can say that his profit is Rs 50 (90-40).
Describe weaver’s cooperative.
Answer: The weaver’s cooperatives help the weavers to earn a higher income and reduce their dependence on the merchant. In a weaver’s cooperative, the weavers form a group and collectively initiate some activities. These activities include;
The government also intervenes at times to help the weavers. For example in Tamil Nadu the government runs a Free School Uniform programme for which it procures the cloth from the powerloom weaver’s cooperatives. The Co-optex stores are also an example of government intervention for the interest of the weavers. The government buys cloth from the handloom weaver’s cooperatives and sells it through Co-optex stores.
Write a note on market and equality.
Answer: Equality is a basic principle in a democracy. It also involves getting a fair wage in the market. In descending order of the gains/earnings, the parties involved in the chain of markets are as under:
The foreign businessman makes huge profits whereas the garment exporter’s profits are moderate. Unfortunately, the earnings of the workers at the garment factory is barely enough for their survival.
Similarly, the cotton farmers and the weavers who have worked so hard hardly earned anything to fulfill their day-to-day needs. The merchants/traders earned much less than the exporter but more than the weavers/farmers.
Describe the life of a cotton farmer.
Answer: Farmers toil very hard in their farms right from sowing the seeds to harvesting cotton when the bolls of cotton plant are ripe and ready to burst. It takes several days to harvest the cotton because the bolls that carry cotton in them do not burst open all at once. High levels of inputs such as fertilizers and pesticides are needed for cultivating cotton. Often the farmers are forced to borrow money from the local traders for meeting such expenses. These traders charge a very high rate of interest and also exploit the farmers by putting some terms and conditions during lending. One very crucial condition of such lending is forcing the farmers to promise them to sell all the cotton to them only. Hence even if there is a local cotton market, the farmers are forced to sell their produce to the local traders from whom they have borrowed money. They are not able to argue with the traders even if they know that they are getting less than the minimum price it fetches in the local market. The traders are powerful men in the village and besides cultivation, farmers depend on them for money required for treating illness, education etc. Also since the farmers are not employed throughout the year, they are forced to borrow money for their survival when they do not have work.
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