The paper assesses the relative deprivation theory of migration in the setting of the Chitwan Valley by using data from the Chitwan Valley Family Study, 1996. The author begins with a presupposition that individuals with relatively less landholdings are more likely to out-migrate, deprivation being conceptualised in terms of access to or ownership of cultivated land (khet). Results are consistent with the relative deprivation theory. In terms of access to land, the author notes that in an agricultural economy like Nepal, various aspects of livelihood and the rising land pressure must also be taken into account. With these findings, the article highlights the importance of capital investments in organising migration, which leaves potentially ‘deprived’ households from seizing the benefits of migration.
Bhandari, P. 2004. Population and Environment. 25:5, 475-499.