Social Background of the Respondents                                 Page :34

 
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productions are essential. The sound economic condition of my family has  helped in my participation in all social, economic and political activities in the area." All his sons and daughters are studying in schools. He desires to give them higher education.
           It is worthwhile to see the income according to the size of the family. Being cultivator, the economy of Mishings depends on the size of the family and the man power. The larger is the number of family members, the higher is the accumulated income of the family. Almost in all extended families, few members are engaged in petty business such as shop keeping, contract, milk business etc. and some of the members are in services also. All the income of the family members is usually handed over to the head of the family, and ultimately the income of the family is enhanced. Table 4.4 indicates the income of the respondents according to the size of the families.
Family Size and Income of the Respondents   
            Table 4.4 shows that there are 26 families with 15 members and of them 12 (14.17%) families are in the income group of above Rs. 4,000.00. Within the family size of 10-12, income of the 6 (10.34%) families are Rs. 1,500.00, out of the total 58 families of the same family size, income of the 15 (25.88%) respondents are above Rs. 4,000.00. In the smallest family size of 3, income of the 21 (75.00%) families are below Rs. 1,500.00. As mentioned earlier, it is seen from the table that the income of the family essentially depended on the size of the family. the figures of the table prove our statement.
On the basis of the figures of table 4.4, the following findings can be derived :
          (a) There is a relationship between the size and the income of the family. The large families are found to be having the higher income.
          (b) In the larger families, there are additional sources of income. Though cultivation is the main source of livelihood and income, some of the members of the larger families are found to be engaged in business and contract.
Nature and Size of Family
A Mishing family consists of spouses and their unmarried children. Though the respondents are in favour of extended family for agricultural activities and for economic security, the newly married couple usually prefer to live separately from their parents. In some cases when one of the spouses dies, the widow or widower lives with the unmarried children and they rarely share the residence with the married son or daughter. In extended families, the parents and their sons and daughters live together. In such families, the father of the married son will be the head of the family. The following table(Table 4.5) shows the nature and size of family of the respondents.
A few of the case studies made in this regard focus our attention on the question of the nature and size of the family. The economic compulsions are having their impact on the tribal mind and they are thinking in terms of smaller family which is manifested by the following case study :

Case Study 4.7
                 Name - Shri Debeswar Pegu, age - 50 years, family members -5, Majuli, the  river island of the Brahmaputra, suffers constantly from floods and erosions.


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