How Planning has helped in building an robust base for Indian Economy?

Influenced by the Soviet Union India adopted 5 year plans to give a direction for the economy and realise the goals of modern India. These plans made a significant contribution towards empowering India.

Planning in India:

  • India’s planned approach led to the setting up of public sector units (PSUs) in diverse areas of manufacturing; research institutions in cutting-edge technologies of the time such as space and atomic energy; and centers of higher learning, including the Indian Institutes of Technologies (IITs). This benefited India immensely in capacity building.
  • British had left the Indian economy in a shattered condition. If not for the planning approach, India could not have achieved these.
  • It was through the planning India was able to counter the traditional economic theory which advocated that a labor-surplus country like India should be limiting its industrial development ambitions to labour-intensive sectors, such as garments or leather.
  • Through five year plans India was able to give impetus to heavy engineering and machine-making industry, scientific research institutes, and electric power
  • The programmes launched under the ambit of five-year plans helped India in building indigenous capabilities in the capital and technology-intensive sectors. Despite the general poverty, India became a model for other developing and Third World nations.
  • Indian planning provided a fertile launching pad for the evolution of development economics as an important sub-discipline.
  • Five-year plans laid the foundation for India’s diversified economic base.
  • The successes for India in the information technology and knowledge-intensive sectors owe much to the research and educational institutions that were built during the early decades.

The planning in India largely ignored removing the hurdles of agriculture and small-scale industries. As a result, the benefits from state-led development have so far reached only a minority of Indians. It was flawed planning not planning in itself which led to the handicap of Indian Economy.


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