Narratives, Discourses and Power: the appropriation of land and water at the periphery of global cities  Vishal Narain
The key issue of this paper <ul><li>How the ecological foot-print of the expansion of global cities is borne by periurban ...
The growth of Gurgaon city  <ul><li>Projected as a millenium city </li></ul><ul><li>Major outsourcing hub of northwest Ind...
The growth of Gurgaon city  <ul><li>Three major reasons behind its growth  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>proximity to the national...
The research questions <ul><li>How does urbanization affect access to land and water of periurban residents ?  </li></ul><...
Research location and design <ul><li>Two villages  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Budheda and Sadhraana </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>...
Sadhraana Village <ul><li>Population of 3500 people </li></ul><ul><ul><li>425 households </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Major crop...
Land use change over the last two decades <ul><li>Gradual Process of land use change  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>80 acres acqui...
Major pressures on groundwater <ul><li>Tubewells dug for Sultanpur National Park </li></ul><ul><li>Farm-houses major appro...
Impacts of growing pressures <ul><ul><li>Fall in water table over last decade </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>60 ft to 100 ...
Adaptation to water scarcity  <ul><li>Technological adaptation  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>From  lao chedas ,  rainth  to tubew...
Budheda <ul><li>725 households and 5500 people </li></ul><ul><li>Crops grown </li></ul><ul><ul><li>wheat, mustard, sorghum...
Land use change <ul><li>Major source of land to supply water to the city: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>129 acres of land for a WT...
Implications  <ul><li>The Gurgaon Water Supply Channel passes through the village to carry water to Basai WTP for Gurgaon ...
Use of urban wastewater <ul><li>The Gurgaon Jhajjar canal passes through the village, carrying the city’s waste </li></ul>...
Why does this situation persist ? <ul><li>Neo-liberal discourses provide  a justification for the growth of millenium citi...
Narratives about global cities <ul><li>These narratives drive real estate </li></ul><ul><li>They are reproduced in the med...
Implications and conclusion <ul><li>Reframe the periurban water narrative to understand the nexus between land and water i...
At the policy level <ul><ul><li>Move away from the urban and rural dichotomy in planning for water resources to understand...
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Vishal Narain_appropriation of land and water at the periphery of global cities

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Narratives, Discourses and Power: the appropriation of land and water at the periphery of global cities

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Vishal Narain_appropriation of land and water at the periphery of global cities

  1. 1. Narratives, Discourses and Power: the appropriation of land and water at the periphery of global cities Vishal Narain
  2. 2. The key issue of this paper <ul><li>How the ecological foot-print of the expansion of global cities is borne by periurban areas </li></ul><ul><li>Global cities grow by acquiring the land and water of the periphery </li></ul><ul><li>How neo-liberal discourses and narratives about the glory of global cities provide a justification for this phenomenon creating pockets of deprivation and vulnerability </li></ul>
  3. 3. The growth of Gurgaon city <ul><li>Projected as a millenium city </li></ul><ul><li>Major outsourcing hub of northwest India </li></ul><ul><ul><li>most preferred outsourcing and high-tech destination in North India </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>home to 80% of the foreign investment of the state of Haryana </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Drawn a large number of MNCs and corporates that have located their headquarters/manufacturing plants in the city </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hero Honda, Maruti, Alcatel, IBM, General Electric, Nestle, Pepsi, Coca-Cola </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Visual landscape </li></ul><ul><ul><li>tall skyscrapers co-existing with village settlement areas and agricultural fields </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Frontiers of the city still expanding </li></ul><ul><ul><li>56 residential sectors exist, another 56 on the anvil </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>enormous implications for water and land resources </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. The growth of Gurgaon city <ul><li>Three major reasons behind its growth </li></ul><ul><ul><li>proximity to the national capital and international airport </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>initiatives of state government </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>policies for SEZs (special economic zones) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>real estate boom since the 1980s </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. The research questions <ul><li>How does urbanization affect access to land and water of periurban residents ? </li></ul><ul><li>How do they adapt to the changes in water availability as a result of the above processes ? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>what mix of technologies and institutions shapes this adaptation ? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>In what narratives and discourses can the above phenomena be seen to be located ? </li></ul>
  6. 6. Research location and design <ul><li>Two villages </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Budheda and Sadhraana </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Periurban Gurgaon </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Qualitative research design /ethnographic approach </li></ul><ul><ul><li>case study method </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>semi-structured interviews with residents </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>key informant interviews </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>focus group meetings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>direct observation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>secondary sources of data </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Sadhraana Village <ul><li>Population of 3500 people </li></ul><ul><ul><li>425 households </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Major crops grown </li></ul><ul><ul><li>wheat, mustard, sorghum, pearl-millet, vegetables and lentils </li></ul></ul><ul><li>No irrigation canal or sewage based irrigation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>only groundwater </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Land use change over the last two decades <ul><li>Gradual Process of land use change </li></ul><ul><ul><li>80 acres acquired for the Sultanpur National Park </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>600 acres sold off to farm-houses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>150 acres acquired for Reliance SEZ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Left with about 40% of the net cultivated area recorded in the 1960s </li></ul><ul><li>Land and water appropriated by the urban elite </li></ul>
  9. 9. Major pressures on groundwater <ul><li>Tubewells dug for Sultanpur National Park </li></ul><ul><li>Farm-houses major appropriator of groundwater </li></ul><ul><ul><li>extract water using submersible pump-sets not affordable by locals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>acquire the land over the ‘fresh’ groundwater </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>transport water over 3-4 km to their farm-houses using underground pipes when the farm-houses are located over saline groundwater </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Impacts of growing pressures <ul><ul><li>Fall in water table over last decade </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>60 ft to 100 ft </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>20 ft to 60 ft </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Farmers accessing saline groundwater </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>unfit for agriculture and livestock </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Small and marginal farmers unable to afford the high costs of extraction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>a submersible pump-set: Rs 100000 to Rs 125000 </li></ul></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Adaptation to water scarcity <ul><li>Technological adaptation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>From lao chedas , rainth to tubewells and submersibles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>small and marginal farmers left out </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use of sprinklers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>water scarcity </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>clayey soil and undulating terrain </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>less labor-intensive irrigation technologies </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Leave land fallow </li></ul><ul><li>Take only one crop per year </li></ul><ul><li>Switch to rain fed crops </li></ul><ul><li>Buy water based on social relations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social capital eroded in periurban areas </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Budheda <ul><li>725 households and 5500 people </li></ul><ul><li>Crops grown </li></ul><ul><ul><li>wheat, mustard, sorghum, pearl-millet, vegetables </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Many sources of irrigation depending on location of fields </li></ul><ul><ul><li>tubewells/submersibles/ urban sewage </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Land use change <ul><li>Major source of land to supply water to the city: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>129 acres of land for a WTP for Gurgaon city </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>30 acres in a second round of acquisition </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>12 acres of grazing land for the same plant </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>17 acres for each of the two canals to carry water for WTP at Basai that is the major supplier of water for Gurgaon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Left with just about a fourth of its net cultivated area </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Implications <ul><li>The Gurgaon Water Supply Channel passes through the village to carry water to Basai WTP for Gurgaon city </li></ul><ul><ul><li>source of opportunity and conflict </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>raised local water table </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>pipe outlet installed for village pond </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>tube wells installed to benefit from water table rise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Had to be removed when the NCR channel was dug </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Highlights vulnerability of farmers to uncertain water supply </li></ul></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Use of urban wastewater <ul><li>The Gurgaon Jhajjar canal passes through the village, carrying the city’s waste </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Untreated sewage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Rich in nutrients, removes the need for costly application of fertilizers and water pumping </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Farmers irrigate paddy and wheat </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Pay irrigation department for its use </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Results in conflicts on account of over irrigation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Long-term adverse health effects </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Now the only source of irrigation with the removal of tubewells </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Highlights vulnerability to an uncertain water supply </li></ul></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Why does this situation persist ? <ul><li>Neo-liberal discourses provide a justification for the growth of millenium cities </li></ul><ul><li>Debate among scholars on the relative role of global and local forces shaping urbanization </li></ul><ul><li>Globalization provides a context for current urbanization processes </li></ul><ul><li>Policy-makers and planners propound certain narratives to glorify these emerging cities that drives changes in land use and real estate </li></ul>
  17. 17. Narratives about global cities <ul><li>These narratives drive real estate </li></ul><ul><li>They are reproduced in the media and by politicians </li></ul><ul><li>They provide a justification for urban expansion plans </li></ul><ul><li>They are the basis of appropriation of rural resources </li></ul><ul><li>They are the basis of biases in urban planning </li></ul>
  18. 18. Implications and conclusion <ul><li>Reframe the periurban water narrative to understand the nexus between land and water in a periurban context </li></ul><ul><li>We need to frame counter-narratives to capture the patterns of deprivation and vulnerability engendered by these processes </li></ul><ul><li>These narratives need to be propounded and be the basis of more equitable urban expansion policies </li></ul>
  19. 19. At the policy level <ul><ul><li>Move away from the urban and rural dichotomy in planning for water resources to understand the rural-urban water flows </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Urban and rural water supply are related, and not distinct conceptual entities </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Recognize the flows of goods, services and resources between urban and rural areas </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mix of participatory, process documentation and action research to inform locally tailored interventions </li></ul></ul>

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