An ethnographic insight on border-markets: reflections from the Indo-Bhutan border

Roychowdhary, Shrrijiet, Agarwal, Shivani, Singh, Mansi and Singh, Vanshika (2020) An ethnographic insight on border-markets: reflections from the Indo-Bhutan border. [Working papers (or Preprints)] (In Press)

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Border spaces evolve as critical points of intersection between distinct economies and cultures. Local border markets, both within and across border spaces, often stand out in comparison to other local market structures as fascinating areas of ethnographic study. This is because they involve people across cultures, belonging to different demographics and sovereignties, who come together for the purpose of economic exchange. The Trans-Himalayan Border region has been widely studied as regards the nature of economic and cultural transactions across bordering nations. India shares land borders with seven nations(Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bhutan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar and China) and has an extensive border trade – both informal and formal – with almost all its neighbours.

Item Type: Working papers (or Preprints)
Keywords: Borders | Border Markets | Indo-Bhutan | Street Vendors | Informality | Ethnographic study | India | Bhutan | Economy
Subjects: Social Sciences and humanities > Social Sciences > Social Sciences (General)
Social Sciences and humanities > Social Sciences > International Relations
JGU School/Centre: Jindal School of International Affairs
Depositing User: Arjun Dinesh
Date Deposited: 29 Mar 2022 09:42
Last Modified: 29 Mar 2022 09:44
Official URL:
Additional Information: The authors would like to especially thank Prof. Deepanshu Mohan, Associate Professor and Director, Centre for New Economic Studies. We would like to also thank Dr. Sunil Kaul, Trustee and Founding Member of Action North East Trust (Ant) for his support during the visits. The authors sincerely thank Mr. Raju Narzary, Executive Director, Northeast Research and Social Work Networking (NERSWN) and members of NERSWN for their insights and support extended to JSIA students in the Certificate in Border Studies Programme. The authors would also like to thank Mr. Ugen Rabten, President, Bhutan India Friendship Association (Gelephu Chapter) and Losel Gyathso Academy(LGA), Gelephu, for creating opportunities for JGU students to learn about Bhutan in their exchange visits. Our field supervisors, Mr. Ravindra Murmu and Mr. Sunil, were also extremely helpful. We would further like to mention Mr. Narattam Basumatary for his constant guidance. We would like to thank and acknowledge all the guidance and immeasurable support received from Dr. Samrat Sinha, Associate Professor and Director, Centre for Borderland Studies, Jindal School of International Affairs, O.P. Jindal Global University. Other contributors to this study include fellow members of the Certificate Programme for the Border Area studies programme – Krupa Vasani, Rohan Khattar Singh, Shriyank Mulgund, Atharva Mehendale, Akshara Goel, Nikita Vir, and Swati Lakshmi Batchu. Without them, this study would have not been possible. Lastly, we thank all our interviewed respondents from market areas, who worked tirelessly in vulnerable border areas at the Indo-Bhutan frontier region.


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