Privatising the Commons- A book review in Economic and Political Weekly

Published in the Economic and Political Weekly, this article sheds light on the issue of privatising the natural resources, which are commonly shared by the rural people. These resources include  forests, pasturelands, wastelands, coasts, lakes and rivers.

The state’s decision to hand over these resources in the hands of corporate for their commercial use has raised serious concern for the rural people who are solely dependent on these resources for their survival. The author lists out the following issues that have been addressed in the book:

  • How has it come to be that communities have no legal rights over the natural resources they have used for generations?
  • How does the state justify privatising these commons?
  • How are communities reacting to this challenge to their lives and livelihoods?

The author elaborates on the following issues that have been discussed in the book:

  • Defining the notion of commons
  • Identifying who are encroachers of these resources and the purpose behind the encroachment
  • The advent of privatisation of the resources
  • The impotency of laws that are framed to protect these resources

Click below to download the review.