India is mainly an agrarian economy and about 70% of its population resides in rural areas and villages which contribute around 15% of GDP through its agriculture and allied sector. So any integration of Indian economy will have wider ramifications for both rural areas and its social, political and economic fabric. Rural life in India was characterized by self sufficient geographical unit following traditional way of life before the advent of globalization. Since the economic reforms of 1991 which led to liberalization, privatization and globalization, there have been implications on rural society which are both pathological and normal.
In the long run, GLobalisation led to a rural-urban divide of India as most of the MNCs concentrated on leveraging the urban resources as more skilled manpower was available there. Further it eroded the demographic base of rural society as more and more people migrated towards towns and cities for better life and income. Other factors like introduction of GMO crops in certain pockets of Maharashtra, cheap import of agricultural products from other countries etc took the toll over rural society. All these factors directly and indirectly led to suicides by farmers.
Globalisation has also impacted the tribal society and its cultural identity in a big way. The trespassing of multi-national companies in these areas not only led to dissolution of most of tribal communities but also threatened their cultural identities, languages which a constitutional right.
However on the positive note, Globalisation led to breakdown of castes barrier to a large extent in the rural society. It also rapidly transformed village society from subsistence based to market based.
On the economic side, it led to the abolition of intermediaries like zamindars and money lenders and created new institutions like banks that provide formal credit to the farmers at cheaper rates. Further global best practices on agriculture and organic farming has been accelerated in various rural parts in India.
The globalization has led to more devolution of power to the villages after 73rd C.A. Act 1992. It bridged the gap between government and people and they can have say in decision making with regard to various policies in the era of globalization that impact their environment and cultural and social milieu.
Cropping up of various non-governmental organization which provide denizens skills and training for better employment opportunities. The technological transformation has created a better informed society. The media and telecommunication has helped them to increase their knowledge about the day to day issues in different context. Globalisation provided more representative governance.
The formation of SHGs is the product of globalization which empowered the women and was able to break the patriarchal mindset infesting village life. These SHGs are tied to various industries in the towns and cities which created an income base for these women.
Consequently, It helped in mainstreaming rural society with the urban India and global world to an extent, helped in creating a more informed society and brought paradigm shift in education, devolution of power and technological reach. On the other hand, disproportionate economic prosperity in various parts induced pathological stains in the form of widespread migration, coerced land acquisitions, suicides of farmers, ever squeezing agricultural land.
Hence, Globalization has changed the face of rural India. The change has been drastic and positive. Rural economy is the backbone of India and the impact of globalization has catapulted India as one of the global superpowers. However rural India must tread cautiously on the path of globalization as its negative effects can prove to be catastrophic.