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Changanācheri, India

The study draws upon both unpublished as well as published sources to describe the structure of, and changes in, agricultural trade and markets at the regional and local level in the British India districts of Shahabad and Gaya, spanning parts of the current state of Bihar, in northern India during 1800–1920.Agricultural trade and markets during the period under study were largely shaped by the logic of subsistence agriculture, available infrastructure, the land rent payment system and patterns of demand. There were six striking developments. First, the construction of all-weather roads and the railway, part of the modern public infrastructure put in place soon after the administration of the two districts came directly under the British Crown in 1858, gave a great fillip to trading activity. Old trade routes lost their pre-eminence, as new channels took root. The modern infrastructure also tended to integrate the markets in the two districts on the one hand, while increasing the pulls of external markets on the other. This was reflected in greater price equalisation between markets. Second, notwithstanding greater market integration and increased stability in annual farm yields on account of the construction of modern irrigation canals that reduced the reliance on monsoonal precipitation, sharp seasonal fluctuations in the market price of food grains continued. Third, there was a sustained secular upswing in agricultural prices practically throughout the period, with the terms of trade moving in favour of agriculture, as the entry of mass produced wage goods into local markets had a deflationary impact on industrial goods. This, along with the growing depth of trade and markets, and changes in the land rent payment system, facilitated the rise of a new social group that became a new source of demand and was to subsequently play a major role in the emerging political economy. Fourth, there were three inter-dependent tiers of trading activity—long-distance trade conducted by arhatiyas, trade between major trade centres conducted by ladu beparis and trade within the village dominated by the grihasta bepari, the chief source of agricultural credit and frequently an agriculturist himself. Modern infrastructure transformed the conduct of long-distance trade, even as the pattern of short-distance trade and credit remained remarkably resilient. The fifth feature was the sharp and sudden expansion of the range of products traded in the market, as the latter was drawn into the emerging global system with the first industrial nation at the epicentre. While locally produced handicraft products like indigenous cotton cloth and paper lost their former importance, trade in agricultural commodities and imported industrial goods grew. Sixth, and last, was the increase in the monetisation of the rural economy at the cutting edge as the traditional system of paying rent in kind was commuted to cash. © 2015 ICHR SAGE Publications. Source

Sheela S.,National Institute of Technology Calicut | Ganesan N.,Government of Kerala
Indian Concrete Journal

This paper reports the flexural behaviour and ultimate load carrying capacity of ferrocement flexural elements having a span of 3 m. The investigation were for (i) two cross sectional shapes ; channel and trapezoidal (ii) mixes with and without styrene butadiene rubber (SBR) (iii) woven wire mesh of 4 x 20 gauge and 6 x 22 gauge and (iv) the number of wire mesh layers. The results indicate that the addition of polymer in the mortar matrix and the use of 4x20 gauge wire mesh, instead of 6x 22 gauge wire mesh, significantly increased the load carrying capacity of the elements. A method for the predicting the ultimate load carrying capacity of the ferrocement flexural elements is also proposed. Source

Swarnalatha K.,College of Engineering, Trivandrum | Letha J.,Government of Kerala
Journal of Urban and Environmental Engineering

Risk analysis of urban aquatic systems due to heavy metals turns significant due to their peculiar properties viz. persistence, non-degradability, toxicity, and accumulation. Akkulam Veli (AV), an urban tropical lake in south India is subjected to various environmental stresses due to multiple waste discharge, sand mining, developmental activities, tourism related activities etc. Hence, a comprehensive approach is adopted for risk assessment using modified degree of contamination factor, toxicity units based on numerical sediment quality guidelines (SQGs), and potentialecological risk indices. The study revealed the presence of toxic metals such as Cr, Cd, Pb and As and the lake is rated under 'low ecological risk' category. © 2013 Journal of Urban and Environmental Engineering (JUEE). All rights reserved. Source

Swarnalatha K.,College of Engineering, Trivandrum | Letha J.,Government of Kerala
Environmental Earth Sciences

The heavy metal burden of Akkulam-Veli Lake, a shallow lake in southern part of India, is investigated through the analysis of surface sediments. The average concentrations of heavy metals such as lead, chromium, nickel, copper, zinc, cobalt, iron, and manganese were determined at selected stations. The degree of contamination of selected stations was evaluated using indices such as enrichment factor, contamination factor, and pollution load index and compared with sediment quality guidelines. Statistical analysis is carried out by correlation analysis and hierarchical clustering analysis to identify relatively homogeneous groups of cases. The results of this study indicate severe contamination at most of the stations selected. The degree of contamination of the lake could be rated as 'moderate' to 'strong'. The average pollution load index shows progressive deterioration of sediment quality indicating 'risk' on the aquatic environment and ecosystems of the lake. © 2012 Springer-Verlag. Source

Zachariah A.,Government of Kerala | Zong J.-C.,The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center | Long S.Y.,The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center | Latimer E.M.,National Elephant Herpesvirus Laboratory | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Wildlife Diseases

Up to 65% of deaths of young Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) between 3 mo and 15 yr of age in Europe and North America over the past 20 yr have been attributed to hemorrhagic disease associated with a novel DNA virus called elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV). To evaluate the potential role of EEHV in suspected cases of a similar lethal acute hemorrhagic disease occurring in southern India, we studied pathologic tissue samples collected from field necropsies. Nine cases among both orphaned camp and wild Asian elephants were identified by diagnostic PCR. These were subjected to detailed gene subtype DNA sequencing at multiple PCR loci, which revealed seven distinct strains of EEHV1A and one of EEHV1B. Two orphan calves that died within 3 days of one another at the same training camp had identical EEHV1A DNA sequences, indicating a common epidemiologic source. However, the high level of EEHV1 subtype genetic diversity found among the other Indian strains matches that among over 30 EEHV1 strains that have been evaluated from Europe and North America. These results argue against the previous suggestions that this is just a disease of captive elephants and that the EEHV1 virus has crossed recently from African elephant (Loxodonta africana) hosts to Asian elephants. Instead, both the virus and the disease are evidently widespread in Asia and, despite the disease severity, Asian elephants appear to be the ancient endogenous hosts of both EEHV1A and EEHV1B. © Wildlife Disease Association 2013. Source

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