Over several decades, most Indian farmers have moved either toward commercial crops—like soybean and sugarcane—or toward hybrid varieties of indigenous crops. Meanwhile, grains like traditional millets, which can withstand rapidly changing weather, are on the decline in India. With the Indian government having convinced the UN to declare 2023 the International Year of Millets, what does it mean for Indian farmers? Sanket Jain reports from the western Indian state of Maharashtra.
The Indian farmers' movement is part of the worldwide struggle to save small farmer communities. The movement can gain traction if protesting farmers include the concerns of landless rural households, who now comprise almost half of households in the Indian countryside.