Chapter 3 Politics of Planned Development Class 12 Political Science Notes

Class 12 Political Science Notes Chapter 3 Politics of Planned Development are well-structured and give you a logical perspective of topics. These Class 12 revision notes will be make sure that a student has understood the specifics of every chapter in clear and precise manner. NCERT Solutions for Chapter 3 Politics of Planned Development which help you in improving the marks in the examinations.

Chapter 3 Politics of Planned Development Class 12 Political Science Notes

Chapter 3 Politics of Planned Development Class 12 Political Science Notes

Political contestation

• In a democracy, the final decision must be a political decision, taken by people’s representatives who are in touch with the feelings of the people with some advice of experts.

• After Independence, almost everyone agreed that the development of India should mean both economic growth and social and economic justice.

• There was disagreement, however, on the kind of role that the government must play in ensuring growth with justice.

Ideas of Development

• Development has different meanings for different sections of the people. For example, to an industrialist who is planning to set up a steel plant, to an urban consumer of steel and to the Adivasi who lives in that region. Thus any discussion on development is bound to generate contradictions, conflicts and debates.

• ‘Development’ was about becoming more ‘modern’ and modern was about becoming more like the industrialised countries of the West.

• Modernisation was also associated with the ideas of growth, material progress and scientific rationality.

• On the eve of Independence, India had before it, two models of modern development: the liberal-capitalist model as in much of Europe and the US and the socialist model as in the USSR.


• Despite the various differences, there was a consensus on one point: that development could not be left to private actors, that there was the need for the government to develop a design or plan for development.

• A section of the big industrialists got together in 1944 and drafted a joint proposal for setting up a planned economy in the country. It was called the Bombay Plan. The Bombay Plan wanted the state to take major initiatives in industrial and other economic investments.

• Soon after India became independent, the Planning Commission came into being. The Prime Minister was its Chairperson. It became the most influential and central machinery for deciding what path and strategy India would adopt for its development.

The Early Initiatives

• As in the USSR, the Planning Commission of India opted for five year plans (FYP).

• The actual Plan Document of First Five Year Plan in December 1951, generated a lot of excitement in the country. The excitement with planning reached its peak with the launching of the Second Five Year Plan in 1956 and continued somewhat till the Third Five Year Plan in 1961.

The First Five Year Plan

• The First Five Year Plan addressed, mainly, the agrarian sector including investment in dams and irrigation.

• One of the basic aims of the planners was to raise the level of national income.

• People’s savings did rise in the first phase of the planned process until the end of the Third Five Year Plan.

• Later, from the early 1960s till the early 1970s, the proportion of savings in the country actually dropped consistently.

Rapid Industrialisation

• The second Five Year Plan stressed on heavy industries. It was drafted by a team of economists and planners under the leadership of PC Mahalanobis.

• The government imposed substantial tariffs on imports in order to protect domestic industries. Such protected environment helped both public and private sector industries to grow.

• The Third Plan was not significantly different from the Second. Critics pointed out that the plan strategies from this time around displayed an unmistakable “urban bias”.

Key Controversies

• The strategy of development followed in the early years raised several important questions.

Agriculture Versus Industry

• Many thought that the Second Plan lacked an agrarian strategy for development, and the emphasis on industry caused agriculture and rural India to suffer.

• Gandhian economist J.C. Kumarappa proposed an alternative blueprint that put greater emphasis on rural industrialisation.

• Others thought that without a drastic increase in industrial production, there could be no escape from the cycle of poverty.

Public Versus Private Sector

• India did not follow either capitalist model of development in which development was left entirely to the private sector, nor did it follow the socialist model in which private property was abolished and all the production was controlled by the state.

• Elements from both these models were taken and mixed together in India. Thus, it was called mixed economy.

• Critics argued that the planners refused to provide the private sector with enough space and the stimulus to grow. On the other hand, there were critics who thought that the state did not do enough. They pointed out that the state did not spend any significant amount for public education and healthcare.

Major Outcomes

• Land reforms did not take place effectively in most parts of the country; political power remained in the hands of the landowning classes; and big industrialists continued to benefit and thrive while poverty did not reduce much.

• The early initiatives for planned development were at best realising the goals of economic development of the country and well-being of all its citizens.

• Those who benefitted from unequal development soon became politically powerful and made it even more difficult to move in the desired direction.


• In early phase of planned development, the foundations of India’s future economic growth were laid.

• These included mega-dams like Bhakhra-Nangal and Hirakud for irrigation and power generation. 

• Some of the heavy industries in the public sector – steel plants, oil refineries, manufacturing units, defense production etc. – were started during this period. Infrastructure for transport and communication was improved substantially.

Land Reforms

• In the agrarian sector, this period witnessed a serious attempt at land reforms that includes the abolition of the colonial system of zamindari.

• Attempts at consolidation of land – bringing small pieces of land together in one place so that the farm size could become viable for agriculture – were also fairly successful.

• However, in spite of good wishes of some top leaders, the dominant social groups would always effectively control policy making and implementation.

The Green Revolution

• The government adopted a new strategy for agriculture in order to ensure food sufficiency.

• It was decided to put more resources into those areas which already had irrigation and those farmers who were already well-off.

• The government offered high-yielding variety seeds, fertilizers, pesticides and better irrigation at highly subsidised prices. The government also gave a guarantee to buy the produce of the farmers at a given price which was the beginning of the ‘green revolution’.

• The green revolution delivered only a moderate agricultural growth (mainly a rise in wheat production) and raised the availability of food in the country, but increased polarisation between classes and regions.

• Some regions like Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh became agriculturally prosperous, while others remained backward.

• Effects of the Green Revolution:
→ The stark contrast between the poor peasantry and the landlords produced conditions favourable for leftwing organisations to organise the poor peasants.
→ The green revolution also resulted in the rise of what is called the middle peasant sections.

Later Developments

• The development in India took a major turn from the end of 1960s. The period from 1967 onwards witnessed many new restrictions on private industry.

• Fourteen private banks were nationalised. The government announced many pro-poor  programmes. These changes were accompanied by an ideological tilt towards socialist  policies. This emphasis generated heated debates within the country among political  parties and also among experts.
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