What are the Achievements of India's Five Year Plans?
The main achievements of Indian Plans are as under:
1. Increase in National Income:
During planning period national income has increased manifold. The average annual increase in national income was registered to be 1.2 percent from 1901 to 1947.
This increase was recorded to be 3 percent in two decades i.e. 1950-70. Moreover, average annual growth rate of national income was 4 per cent in 1970-80 which, further, increased to 5 percent in 1980-90. From 1980-81 to 2000-01, it increased to 5.8 per cent. Thus, a rise in national income has been key indicator for economic development of India.
2. Increase in Per Capita Income:
Before independence, increase in per capita income was almost zero. But after the adoption of economic planning in free India, per capita income has continuously been increased. In the first plan, it raised .by 1.8 per cent and in Second Plan, it was 2.0 per cent.
During Third Plan, it declined to (-) 6.8 per cent. In Three annual plans, growth of per capita income was registered at 1.5 per cent.
In Fourth Plan, it came down to 1.0 per cent. In Fifth Plan, it was 2.7 per cent. During Sixth and Seventh Plan, it was 3.2 per cent and 3.6 per cent respectively. In Eighth Plan, it rose to 4.6 per cent. In 2000-01, its rise was registered at 4.9 at 1993-94 prices.
3. Development in Agriculture:
Agricultural productivity has also marked an upward trend during the plan period. The production of food grains which has 510 lakh tonnes in 1950-51 increased to 1804 lakh tonnes in 1990-91 and further to 212.0 million tonnes in 2000-01.
Similarly, the production of cotton which was 21 lakh bales in 1950-51 was expected to be 10.1 million bales in 2000-01. In the same period, the production of sugarcane was expected to be 300.1 lakh tonnes in 2000-01 against the 69 lakh in 1950-51.
Thus, agriculture production during planning period has increased. During the entire planning period, growth rate of agricultural production remained 2.8 per cent per annum.
However, use of chemical fertilizer, better seeds, irrigation and improved methods of cultivation has increased productivity per hectare and per worker many times. This development has laid the foundation of green revolution and other institutional changes in agriculture sector.
4. Development of Industry:
In the first five year plan much of the capital was invested to develop the industry and defense. About fifty percent of the total outlay of the plan was invested for their development.
As a result, industrial production increased to a great extent. For instance, the production of cotton cloth which was 4210 million sq. meters in 1950-51 increased to 18989 million sq. metres in 1999-2000.
The production of finished steel increased to 31.1 million tones in 2001-02 from 10 lakh tonnes in 1950-51. In the same fashion, the production of coal was recorded to be 3226 million tonnes in 2001-02 against the 323 million tonnes in 1950-51.
5. Development of Transport and Communication:
During the planning period, much attention has been paid towards the development of transport and communication. In the first two plans, more than one-fourth of the total outlay was invested on the development of transport and communication.
In 1990-91, the total length of roads increased to 1024.4 thousand kms from 157.0 thousand km. However, further it increased to 1448.6 thousand km in 1998-99. In order to encourage trade goods rail was developed.
6. Self Reliance:
During the last four decades, considerable progress seems to have been made towards the achievement of self reliance. We are no longer dependent on other countries for the supply of food grains and a number of agricultural crops.
In the same fashion, we have made substantial investment in basic and heavy industries. We are in a position to produce all varieties of basic consumer goods.
During the planning period, many steps have been taken to increase the employment opportunities in the country. In the first five year plan employment opportunities to 70 lakh people were provided.
In the fourth and fifth plans about 370 lakh persons got employment. In the seventh five year plan, provisions have been made to provide employment to 340 lakh people.
8. Development of Science and Technology:
In the era of planning, India has made much progress in the field of science and technology. In reality, the development is so fast that India stands third in the world in the sphere of science and technology. Indian engineers and scientists are in a position that they can independently establish any industrial venture.
9. Capital Formation:
In India due to the development of agriculture, industry and defense, the rate of capital formation has also increased. In 1950-51, the rate of capital formation was 11.5 percent.
The rate of capital formation during Second, Third and Fourth plan was 12.7 per cent, 13.5 per cent and 14.5 per cent respectively. It was 24.1 per cent in seventh plan and 26 per cent in Eighth plan and 24 percent in Ninth Flan.
10. Social Services:
Social services, like, education, health and medical facilities, I family planning and the like have also expanded considerably.
As a result of these services: (i) Death rate reduced from 27 per thousand in 1951 to 8 per thousand in 2000-01. (ii) Average life-expectancy increased from 32 years in 1951 to 638 in 2000-01. (iii) Several deadly diseases like malaria etc. have been eradicated, (iv) The number of school going students has increased three-fold and that of collegiate five-fold since 1951. The number of annual admissions to degree courses in Engineering Colleges increased from 7100 in 1950 to 1, 33,000 and the number of universities increased from 27 to 254 by now. (v) A chain of National Laboratories and Research Centers has been set up across the country. (vi) Number of hospital-beds, doctors, nurses, medicines and family planning clinics and medical facilities has greatly increased. Number of hospitals and dispensaries has increased to 68396. Now there is one doctor per 5.2 per ten thousand.