The changes in the distribution of land pattern shows that while the general picture of a highly unequal pattern of land distribution has remained unchanged to a certain extent, certain interesting changes have occurred within this overall structure, which are quite crucial for an understanding of the dynamics, which are at work.
In the first place, there was a decline in the average land area owned by the households that owned more than one acre of land in previous times. Further, the average owned land among the natives was higher than that owned by the immigrants in all the localities. Although, in terms of the percentage of households and area owned declined among the people of the highest strata, there are not much significant changes in the average land owned by the households in the fringe areas.
Therefore, the classes, which showed the maximum stability, were the rich and the people belonging to the lowest strata. Although nearly, one fifth (20.8 percent) of the richer households became poorer during the span of 21 years, a vast majority of them remained in the same class. Similarly more than 60 percent of the households in 1980 belonging to the lowest strata remained in the same group. Thus, for the two extreme groups, the staying power seems to be quite high. The middle class was found to be more mobile. However the downward mobility in their case is much larger than their upward mobility. This general picture of the urban process is also true in each locality and especially in the fringe areas.
Thus in Kerala Houses
are also shrinking in size and also the number of persons living in each household. This trend is likely to lead to further fragmentation of the existing households in the state. The advent of the nuclear family with the sad demise of the joint family has created a different situation in all the districts. What the Land Reforms Act couldn’t achieve is being implemented due to a change in the tastes and preferences of the people.