Institute for Social and Economic Change
Working Paper: 384
Usage of Land and Labour under Shifting
Cultivation in Manipur
Shifting cultivation remains the main source of employment for large sections of the rural people who depend on agriculture for their livelihood in the hill areas of Manipur. Its inputs continue to be crude and traditional in nature resulting in subsistence production and income. It is labour intensive and has a traditional character, as described by Mellor. Rapid population growth has raised the use of forest land for shifting cultivation in Manipur. It has led to huge loss of forest resources every year. Institutional changes in the form of private ownership of land have resulted in commercialising forest products like timber and firewood. Land use and forest laws need to be strengthened to safeguard and protect forest land. Restructuring of land system from community to private ownership may reduce the practice of shifting cultivation and conserve forest cover.