I am deeply indebted to Business and Community Foundation, New Delhi for choosing me for their fellowship programme (Fellowships for Corporate Partnerships) for the year 1999-2000 to work on this issue. Many individuals and organisations have helped me in carrying out this study. However, I must express my gratitude, particularly to Mr. Purshotam Raj, Director of programmes, BCF, for his keen
interest and encouragement when this work was in progress. I am grateful to Dr. Vikas Goswamy, Director General, BCF, for his interest to get this report published.
I am particularly thankful to Plan International (India Chapter) for extending the financial support for publication of this report and also undertaking the responsibility of printing work. I am grateful to its Director, Mr. Girish Menon, for recognising the need for wider dissemination of this report.
My friend and colleague Lucia da Corta has immensely helped me to understand the relevance and broader context of this issue. In fact the present report is a joint effort of both of us and it has used some of the findings from our joint research on the same subject which was recently published in the Journal of Peasant Studies (Davuluri Venkateswarlu and Lucia da Corta, 'Transformations in
Age and Gender of Unfree Workers on Hybrid Cottonseed Farms in Andhra Pradesh', JPS, April 2001, pp 1-36).
I am also indebted to my teacher, Prof Shantha Sinha, who inspired me to work on this issue and also recommending my name for fellowship.
I am thankful to BBC World television for documenting and telecasting the findings of the present research, which gave wider publicity to the issue.
My sincere thanks to Sri K. Murahari Rao (Managing Director, Pravardhna Seeds Pvt. Ltd.) and Sri K. Prasad (Managing Director, Amereswara Agro tech.) for providing useful data and sparing their valuable time.
I also express my sincere thanks to my friends, U. Ajitha, Y.V.S. Divakar Rao, Y.N.S. Chowdary, R.V.S.S. Ramakrishna, Venkatramana, my colleagues at Global Research and Consultancy Services - Dr. C. Srinivas, Dr. Venugopal Rao and Dr. Abdul Thaha for their support in various stages of this work.
Dr. Davuluri Venkateswarlu