Rajasthan Media Workshop
Jaipur, Rajasthan, October 6, 2005

CUTS Centre for Consumer Action, Research & Training (CUTS-CART) in partnership with CUTS Centre for International Trade, Economics & Environment (CUTS-CITEE), Jaipur and with the active support of Novib (Oxfam, The Netherlands) and Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD), New Delhi, organised the media workshop at Harish Chandra Mathur-Rajasthan State Institute of Public Administration (HCM-RIPA), Jaipur, Rajasthan, on October 6, 2005. The media persons, both national as well regional level, from English and local language press including alternative media participated in the workshop.


The objective of workshop was to actively involve the media in disseminating comprehensive information and greater orientation on issues pertaining to agriculture, textile & handlooms under globalisation and WTO regime, so that the right information and knowledge about these issues could reach in the right perspective to the public at large, and thus, can have larger implications on their lives.

Inaugural Session

George Cheriyan, Assistant Director, CUTS International, Jaipur

  • informed about the objectives of the project and the role of various stakeholders involved in it with special focus on media. The role of media was also highlighted in the context of the upcoming 6th WTO Ministerial Conference scheduled at Hong Kong in December 2006.

Highlights of the Session

WTO & globalisation: An Introduction

Suneel Bhargava, Chartered Accountant, S Bhargava Associates, Jaipur

  • Talked about General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT).
  • Safeguard mechanisms have been implemented by China, which is not an open market to ensure whether or not declared objective of globalisation is implemented or not.
  • Health and global environment: All countries can get an equal opportunity and challenge the agreement. For developing countries the agreement stated, ‘the growth of share will increase for the poor countries.
  • Whether the pace of WTO is promising or not is an important question and whether all the countries are getting equal opportunities or not. If all the countries are receiving equal opportunities then there should not be any controversy.
  • In world trade, if the share of United States (US) and European Union (EU) has risen then the question is whose share has decreased/gone down.

Economic Governance & Development: The Role of Media

Jai Singh Kothari, Editor, Nafa Nuksan, Jaipur

  • Changes take place in two ways: change by time and change for time. We cannot change ourselves by time, so we have to change according to time.
  • Changes that will come about in future on account of globalisation were elaborated upon. These changes related to all walks of life – agriculture-based economy will be replaced by industry-based economy, power-based economy is changing into rule-based economy; nature-based into human-based (economy will be created by humans and humans will only destroy it). An experienced person would always benefit more. Period of life long learning has started.
  • Lot of change will come in the near future and there will be more competition. Media persons have to go deep into the matter to extend it properly to the public.
  • Change from global to local government.
  • Nobody talks about the change in education system so that the young generation can get some more jobs. Within 10-15 years, the government buildings of the schools will be converted into old age hostels.
  • The relationship between husband and wife will change from life long relation to long life relation within 10-15 years due to the effect of globalisation.
  • Today who is working will not work after 10-15 years and for those who will be still at work, the work pattern will change.

States Critical Issues on Trade: The Role of Media

Pranav Kumar, CUTS International, Jaipur
  • Talked about the change in economic rights. After 1980s, export led growth was visible. There developed an inward looking attitude. We have done better on economic front than social front. If there is no economic growth then how to have development?
  • In international trade one cannot blame the centre only, the state has to do something also. In WTO, we are negotiating on agriculture, services and others. Coordination is required between the Ministry of Commerce and Textiles.
  • India is an agriculture-based economy with small farmers, less productivity and poor infrastructure. If we want to increase the productivity, domestic policies needs to be implemented. The farmers are not properly organised here and often become victims of politics. Only 40 percent of land is under irrigation. Now-a- days, fertilizer is not being used in huge lands. After the emergence of WTO, a negative impact is seen on the oilseeds sector. All the respective research institutions, civil society organisations (CSOs), university persons, media persons will have to take the initiative to solve these problems for taking it to the policy making bodies. Moreover, for taking such issues to great heights there should be a link between national, international, regional and grassroots level.
  • Central government to negotiate with the highest body and for this at least 10-15 years time necessary.
  • In the agricultural sector, Rajasthan is competing with the international market in oilseeds and dairy farming.
  • In terms of services, China is expected to have its powerhouse. Services driven growth and market growth to be found here soon. Services to be linked with poverty reduction.
  • In Rajasthan Business Process Outsourcing (BPOs) to be given importance.
  • From the available data it is found that the remote areas are devoid of medical facilities. Therefore, a tax to be implemented for the welfare purpose. Media has to take the initiative in implementing it.

Hong Kong WTO Ministerial Conference: Opportunities and Challenges

L N Nathuramka, Senior Eminent Economist, Jaipur
  • WTO: Its easy to get into WTO but not easy to come out of it. 148 countries are members in it. In 2001, China became its member whereas Russia is still not a member of it. WTO, International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank (WB) are the three groups in it.
  • India is not anymore a sleeping giant. It has now become a tiger as mini Multinational Corporations (MNCs) is entering into the competition world. Give-take concept has to be implemented.
  • Trade facilitation has become an important issue in WTO. India is rising as a power. China will rank one after 10-15 years; India will rank third after America in the second position.
  • Export subsidies needs to be abolished. America, EU and China destroyed the cotton growers of Africa and India. Subsidy is definitely a great problem.
  • In WTO, the question on General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) has been gaining importance. There are four modes: Mode 1: Outsourcing (like BPOs), Mode 2: Temporary Consumption of Service in another country (for example medical tourism, education etc), Mode 3: Commercial presence [like foreign direct investment (FDI); China is at its peak] and Mode 4: Temporary movement of natural persons (for example professional skills etc.). India wants to exchange mode 4 with mode 3 with the developed countries.
  • Labour reforms should be taken care of and for this, enough flexibility is needed (both domestic and international).
  • Process patent now converted into product patent. Compulsory licensing should be given to India. Right to challenge should be implemented even before and after the inaction of patent law.
  • WTO can wait for sometime but regional cooperation to be taken care of properly. Let there be a borderless society to handle various issues. For this, India needs capital and competence to move forward. India will have to run faster to catch China by 2008 because China may become no.1 within 10-15 years. China can make impossible things possible while India makes the other way round.

Group Discussions

Key Concerns of Rajasthan State on Agriculture, Textiles & Handloom

Group A: Agriculture


  • farmers’ level of education should be increased;
  • agricultural inputs should be provided to farmers at subsidised rates;
  • cooperative farming should be promoted;
  • adequate irrigational facilities;
  • in order to eliminate intermediaries mandis should be set-up at panchayat (village council) level;
  • seminars involving farmers, agriculture department and media should be held at taluka level;
  • crop insurance should be given;
  • control over migration from rural to urban areas; and
  • media should provide all the desired information to farmers in their local language.

Group B: Textiles & Handloom


  • handloom sector should be given special provisions for its survival;
  • families should be given special incentives for them to continue/enter in this profession;
  • cotton cultivation should be encouraged;
  • various means of media should adequately propogate the sector;
  • electricity rates should be lowered;
  • availability of water, textile parks & clusters should be set-up;
  • labour laws should be altered to incorporate contract labour system for readymade garment industry;
  • special protection to small scale and cottage industries; and
  • special provisions to Rajasthan’s kota doriya and sanganeri prints.