Discuss the efforts towards economic planning in India during the Pre-independence Period.

Model Answer:
Idea of planned economy was first crystallized in 1930s when our national leaders came under the influence of socialist philosophy. India’s Five year plans were very much impressed by the rapid strides achieved by the USSR through five years plans. A number of plans were envisaged during pre independence period. For example-
National Planning Committee
The first attempt to develop a national plan for India came up in 1938. In that year, Congress President Subhash Chandra Bose had set up a National Planning Committee with Jawaharlal Nehru as its president.
Bombay Plan
In 1944 Eight Industrialists of Bombay prepared “A Brief Memorandum Outlining a Plan of Economic Development for India”. This is known as “Bombay
Plan”. This plan envisaged doubling the per capita income in 15 years and tripling the national income during this period. But, it was not accepted by Nehru.
People’s Plan
People’s plan was drafted by MN Roy. This plan was based on Marxist socialism and was for ten years period and gave greatest priority to Agriculture.
Gandhian Plan
This plan was drafted by Sriman Nayaran; principal of Wardha Commercial College. It emphasized the economic decentralization with primacy to rural development by developing the cottage industries.
Sarvodaya Plan
Sarvodaya Plan (1950) was drafted by Jaiprakash Narayan. This plan itself was inspired by Gandhian Plan and Sarvodaya Idea of Vinoba Bhave.
Planning and Development Department
In August 1944, The British India government set up “Planning and Development Department” under the charge of Ardeshir Dalal. But this department was abolished in 1946.
Planning Advisory Board
In October 1946, a planning advisory board was set up by Interim Government to review the plans and future projects and make recommendations upon them.

Question for UPSC Mains:
Discuss the efforts towards economic planning in India during the Pre-independence Period.

Published: February 7, 2016 | Modified:June 27, 2019

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