Structural Change

Structural Change


Discuss background and factors for rapid industrialisation in independent India.


(i) Background: The British colonial state had an important role in the way industrialisation and urbanisation took place in India. Here we very briefly touch upon how the independent Indian states played an active role in promoting industrialisation. And in some sense was responding to the impact that colonialism had on the growth of industry in India.

(ii) Factors or Causes:

(a) For Indian nationalists the issue of economic exploitation under colonial rule was a central issue. Images of pre-colonial fabled riches of India contrasted with the poverty of British India.

(b) The Swadeshi movement strengthened loyalty to the national economy.

(c) Modern ideas made people realise that poverty was preventable. Indian nationalists saw rapid industrialisation of the economy as the path towards both growth and social equity.

(iii) Steps for Development:

(a) Development of heavy and machine-making industries, expansion of the public sector and holding of a large co-operative sector were considered very important.

(b) A modern and prosperous India, as visualised by Jawaharlal Nehru, was to be built on an edifice of giant steel plants or gigantic dams and power stations.

(c) Read Nehru’s remarks on the Bhakra Nangal Dam:

Our engineers tell us that probably nowhere else in the world is there a dam as high as this. The work bristles with difficulties and complications. As I walked around the site I thought that these days the biggest temple and mosques and gurdwara is the place where man works for the good of mankind. Which place can be greater than this, this Bhakra Nangal, where thousands and lakhs of men have worked have shed their blood and sweat and laid down their lives as well?

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