Peasants Power and Politics in a Bangladesh Village

Type Journal Article
Title Peasants Power and Politics in a Bangladesh Village
Bangladesh is a land of thousands of peasant farm families. The country is predominantly an agrarian society. A major portion of its population depending on agriculture, known as peasants. Bangladesh society comprises a large portion of peasants. Peasant society owns a traditional power structure and some specific social organization that influence the production system and livelihood activities of that class of people. Faction grouping and influence of state political change also influence farm household activities. Considering these context, a study was undertaken to focus on the peasant faction grouping and power structure at the village Heshakhal under Nangolkot Upazila of Comilla district. The major focus of the study was to comprehend the change occurring in social organizations within the peasant society. The focus was also on faction grouping and changing power structure of the village. Anthropological method of data collection was taken to from the field. The data were qualitative type, mostly descriptive in analysis.Heshakhal village was predominanted by Hindu population before 1947. Hindu family leaders played vital role in faction grouping and power structure of the village. After the separation of India sub-continent a major portion of Hindu population migrated to India. Along with that a portion of Muslim population of Agartala of India settled in the village. They were known as Rewaji families. At present there are three subgroups of Muslim population that are known living in Heshakhal. Those are : 1) Deshi 2) Swondupi and 3) Rewaji. At present 44.6% of the whole families are Deshi original settlers. 43.52% are Swondupi (migrated from South western part of Bangladesh) and 3.27% are Rewaji Muslim families. Along with them 8.6% Hindu families are now living in village. Heshukhal village is in an agrarian setting. Locally the village is known as a paddy growing village. In last forty years a major change occurred in traditional power structure of the village. In last century the villages were divided in three Samaj. Linkage with formal administrative unit was flexible. Salish system was the major feature of conflict resolution specially in managing social conflict. At present the village is separated in several Samajs. The role of Samaj is decreasing day by day. Influence and role of national level political parties are also playing strong role in leadership in the village which was not seen thirty years ago.A major change was also seen in the social organization of the village. In the village peasant families once depended on agriculture are trying to diversify its manpower in non-farm activities. Marriage system has changed, due to intermarriage system among the Swandupi and deshi community.

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