5.4         ndian      onom
               which was to consider various plans for                   the National Planning Committee, and
               the reconstruction of the economy.12                      other plans and proposals for planning
        (ii) Consultative Committee of Economists:                       and to make recommendations regarding
               A consultative committee of economists                    the future machinery of planning and
               under the chairmanship of Ramaswamy                       also in regard to objectives and priorities.
               Mudaliar was set up in 1941 as a                          The Board strongly recommended
               ‘think tank’ to advise the four Post-                     the creation of “a single, compact
               War Reconstruction Committees for                         authoritative organisation ... responsible
               executing national plan for the country.                  directly to the Cabinet ... which should
                  Though the committee suggested many                    devote its attention continuously to
               plans for different areas of the economy,                 the whole field of development.”14 This
               they had negligible practical significance                was an emphatic advice for the creation
               as these suggestions were imbued with                     of a National Planning Commission,
               academic biases.                                          similar to FICCI’s view of 1934, which
                                                                         will have autonomy and authoritative
       (iii) Planning             and           Development
                                                                         say on the process of development
               Department: After all possible delays, it
                                                                         planning, working in tandem with the
               was in 1944 that the government created a
                                                                         Union Cabinet and also influencing the
               Planning and Development Department
                                                                         developmental decisions of the states.
               under a separate member of the Viceroy’s
                                                                         This happened in 1950 with the setting
               Executive Council for organising and
                                                                         up of the Planning Commission.
               co-ordinating economic planning in the
               country. Ardeshir Dalal (the controller               The Board, in its Report of January 1947,
               of the Bombay Plan) was appointed as             emphatically expressed the opinion that the
               one of its acting members. More than             “proper development of large-scale industries can
               20 panels of experts were set up. The            only take place if political units, whether in the
               central departments and the governments          provinces or states, agree to work in accordance
               of the Provinces and Indian states were          with a common plan.”15 This suggestion worked
               invited to prepare detailed plans for            as a great influence on the planning process
               industrialisation.12 This Department was         of Independent India as it always tried to give
               abolished in 1946.                               unifying nature to development planning. But,
                                                                this process also induced a serious tendency of
       (iv) Advisory Planning Board: In October
                                                                centralisation in the Indian planning to which
               1946, the Government of India
                                                                a number of states were to pose objections and
               appointed a committee called the
                                                                straining the centre-state relations, time and
               ‘Advisory Planning Board’13 to review
                                                                again.16 However, the political leadership, right
               the planning that had already been done
               by the British government, the work of             14.  Dharma Kumar (ed.), The Cambridge Economic
                                                                       History of India, Vol.II, p. 950.
      12.   There was a popular view in favour of rapid           15.  Kalikinkar Datta, An Advanced History of India, 4th
            industrialisation among the important nationalists,        Edition (New Delhi: Macmillan, 2006), pp. 955–56.
            economists and the business class of that time.
                                                                  16.  S.N. Jha and P.C. Mathur (eds), Decentralisation and
      13.   The Board was set up by the Interim Government             Local Politics, (New Delhi: Sage Publications, 2002),
            formed in 1946.                                            pp. 28–30.