NCERT Class 10 History The Peculiarities of Industrial Growth

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The Peculiarities Of Industrial Growth Class 10 History NCERT

Class 10 History students should refer to the following NCERT Book chapter The Peculiarities Of Industrial Growth in standard 10. This NCERT Book for Grade 10 History will be very useful for exams and help you to score good marks

The Peculiarities Of Industrial Growth NCERT Class 10

The Peculiarities of Industrial Growth

European Managing Agencies, which dominated industrial production in India, were interested in certain kinds of products. They established tea and coffee plantations, acquiring land at cheap rates from the colonial government; and they invested in mining, indigo and jute. Most of these were products required primarily for export trade and not for sale in India.

When Indian businessmen began setting up industries in the late nineteenth century, they avoided competing with Manchester goods in the Indian market. Since yarn was not an important part of British imports into India, the early cotton mills in India produced coarse cotton yarn (thread) rather than fabric. When yarn was imported it was only of the superior variety. The yarn produced in Indian spinning mills was used by handloom weavers in India or exported to China. By the first decade of the twentieth century a series of changes affected the pattern of industrialisation.

As the swadeshi movement gathered momentum, nationalists mobilised people to boycott foreign cloth. Industrial groups organised themselves to protect their collective interests, pressurising the government to increase tariff protection and grant other concessions. From 1906, moreover, the export of Indian yarn to China declined since produce from Chinese and Japanese mills flooded the Chinese market. So industrialists in India began shifting from yarn to cloth production. Cotton piecegoods production in India doubled between 1900 and 1912.

Yet, till the First World War, industrial growth was slow. The war created a dramatically new situation. With British mills busy with war production to meet the needs of the army, Manchester imports into India declined. Suddenly, Indian mills had a vast home market to supply. As the war prolonged, Indian factories were called upon to supply war needs: jute bags, cloth for army uniforms, tents and leather boots, horse and mule saddles and a host of other items. New factories were set up and old ones ran multiple shifts. Many new workers were employed and everyone was made to work longer hours. Over the war years industrial production boomed.

After the war, Manchester could never recapture its old position in the Indian market. Unable to modernise and compete with the US, Germany and Japan, the economy of Britain crumbled after the war. Cotton production collapsed and exports of cotton cloth from Britain fell dramatically. Within the colonies, local industrialists gradually consolidated their position, substituting foreign manufactures and capturing the home market.

5.1 Small-scale Industries Predominate

While factory industries grew steadily after the war, large industries formed only a small segment of the economy. Most of them – about 67 per cent in 1911 – were located in Bengal and Bombay. Over the rest of the country, small-scale production continued to predominate. Only a small proportion of the total industrial labour force worked in registered factories: 5 per cent in 1911 and 10 per cent in 1931. The rest worked in small workshops and household units, often located in alleys and bylanes, invisible to the passer-by. In fact, in some instances, handicrafts production actually expanded in the twentieth century. This is true even in the case of the handloom sector that we have discussed. While cheap machine-made thread wiped out the spinning industry in the nineteenth century, the weavers survived, despite problems. In the twentieth century, handloom cloth production expanded steadily: almost trebling between 1900 and 1940. How did this happen?

This was partly because of technological changes. Handicrafts people adopt new technology if that helps them improve production without excessively pushing up costs. So, by the second decade of the twentieth century we find weavers using looms with a fly shuttle. This increased productivity per worker, speeded up production and reduced labour demand. By 1941, over 35 per cent of handlooms in India were fitted with fly shuttles: in regions like Travancore, Madras, Mysore, Cochin, Bengal the proportion was 70 to 80 per cent. There were several other small innovations that helped weavers improve their productivity and compete with the mill sector.


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India and Contemporary World II Chapter 1 The Rise of Nationalism in Europe
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