Q. 1. Assess the outcomes of the early phase of planned development in India.
Ans. Outcomes of planning in India are positive as well as negative which are as follow:
(i) In the early phase of planned development, the foundations of India’s future economic growth were laid. Some of the largest developmental projects in India’s history were undertaken during this period. These included mega-dams like Bhakhra-Nangal and Hirakud for irrigation and power generation.
(ii) Some of the heavy industries in the public sector - steel plants, oil refineries, manufacturing units, defense production etc. were started during this period. Infrastructure for transport and communication was improved substantially.
(iii) Much of the later economic growth, including that by the private sector, may not have been possible in the absence of these foundations.
(i) Land reforms did not take place effectively in most parts of the country; political power remained in the hands of the landowning classes; and big industrialists continued to benefit and thrive while poverty did not reduce much.
(ii) The early initiatives for planned development were at best realizing the goals of economic development of the country and well being of all its citizens. The inability to take significant step in this direction in the very first stage was to become a political problem.
(iii) Those who benefitted from unequal development soon became politically powerful and made it even more difficult to move in the desired direction.
Q. 2. Read the following passage :
“In the early years of Independence, two contradictory tendencies were already well advanced inside the Congress Party. On the one hand, the national party executive endorsed socialist principles of state ownership, regulation and control over key sectors of the economy in order to improve productivity and at the same time curb economic concentration. On the other hand, the national Congress government pursued liberal economic policies and incentives to private investment that was justified in terms of the sole criterion of achieving maximum increase in production.”
(i) What is the contradiction that the author is talking about? What would be the political implications of a contradiction like this?
(ii) If the author is correct, why is it that the Congress was pursuing this policy? Was it related to the nature of the opposition parties?
(iii) Was there also a contradiction between the central leadership of the Congress party and its state level leaders?
Ans. (i) The author of the passage is discussing about the contradiction in adoption of models and devising the policies. The political implications of this are that there was a difference of opinion between various members of the party. It may also point to making the licensing norms strict so as to ensure that only the deserving get the benefit.
(ii) The purpose behind adoption of this policy by the Congress was to increase production. It was surely related to the nature of opposition parties which focused more on liberalisation and globalisation of the economy.
(iii) This does not point out that there was a contradiction between the central leadership and the state leadership of the Congress party. At both levels, the aim was the same.