lannin in ndia        5.5
     from the 1920s, was very conscious of the need                          (ii) Agreement on rapid industrialisation
     for decentralised planning in the country.17                                 for which both the plans agreed upon
                                                                                  an emphasis on heavy capital goods and
     the bombAy PlAn                                                              basic industries (the Bombay Plan had
     The Bombay Plan was the popular title of ‘A Plan                             allocated 35 per cent of its total plan
     of Economic Development for India’, which was                                outlay on basic industries).
     prepared by a cross-section of India’s leading                         (iii) Taking clues from the Soviet Planning, the
     capitalists. The eight capitalists involved in this                          NPC and the Bombay Plan both were in
     plan were Purshotamdas Thakurdas, J.R.D. Tata,                               favour of a simultaneous development of
     G.D. Birla, Lala Sri Ram, Kasturbhai Lalbhai,                                the essential consumer goods industries,
     A.D. Shroff, Avdeshir Dalal and John Mathai.18                               but as a low-key affair.
     The Plan was published in 1944–45. Out of these                        (iv) Both the plans agreed upon the
     eight industrialists, Purshotamdas Thakurdas                                 importance of promoting the medium-
     was one among the 15 members of the National                                 scale, small-scale and cottage industries
     Planning Committee (1938);19 J.R.D. Tata, G.D.                               as they could provide greater employment
     Birla and Lala Sri Ram, were members of the sub-                             and require lesser capital and lower order
     committees (29 in total) of the National Planning                            of plants and machineries.
     Committee.20
                                                                             (v) Both the plans wanted the state to play
          The popular sentiments regarding the need                               an active role in the economy through
     of planning and criss-cross of memberships                                   planning, controlling and overseeing the
     between the NPC and the Bombay Plan club                                     different areas of the economy, i.e., trade,
     made possible some clear-cut agreements between                              industry and banking, through state
     these two major plans, which ultimately went to                              ownership (public sector) or through
     mould the very shape of the Indian economy after                             direct and extensive control over them.
     Independence. We may have a look at some of the
                                                                            (vi) Large-scale measures for social welfare
     very important agreements:21
                                                                                  were favoured by both the plans, which
           (i) A basic agreement on the issue of the                              suggested to be based on issues like,
                 agrarian restructuring—abolition of all                          right to work and full employment, the
                 intermediaries (i.e., zamindari abolition),
                                                                                  guarantee of a minimum wage, greater
                 minimum wages, guarantee of minimum
                                                                                  state expenditure on housing, water
                 or fair prices for agricultural products,
                                                                                  and sanitation, free education, social
                 cooperatives, credit and marketing
                                                                                  insurance to cover unemployment and
                 supports.
                                                                                  sickness and provision of utility services
       17.    A. H. Hanson, The Process of Planning: A Study of                   such as electricity and transportation at a
              India’s Five-Year Plans, 1950–1964 (london: Oxford                  low cost through state subsidies.
              University Press, 1966), pp. 152–55.
       18.    Bipan Chandra, ‘The Colonial Legacy’, p. 23.
                                                                           (vii) Both the plans agreed upon a planning
       19.    Partha Chatterjee, ‘Development Planning and the Indian
                                                                                  which could do away with gross
              Planning’, in Partha Chatterjee (ed.), State and Politics in        inequalities. Through measures like
              India (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1997), p. 273.           progressive taxation and prevention of
       20.    Rakesh Mohan, ‘Industrial Policy and Contorls’, in Bimal
              Jalan (ed.), Indian Economy: Problems and Prospects
                                                                                  concentration of wealth. Inequality was
              (New Delhi: Penguin Books, 1994).                                   considered undesirable as it tended to
       21.    Bipan Chandra, ‘The Colonial Legacy’, pp. 23–31.                    restrict the domestic market.