What was the economic distress of the Indian people as a consequence of the World War?


a. Economic Distress:

The most significant was the economic consequence of the World War I on the Indian people.

The consequence may be summed up as follows:


First, Prof. Sumit Sarkar points out that the War affected Indian life through heavy taxes, sharp rise in prices, etc.

Second, in the War years there was a huge ‘drain of wealth’. The wealth was drained out in the form of grain and raw materials for the military needs. The situation was such that food was exported keeping Indians starved.

Third, another impact of the World War I was felt when the prices of industrial goods as also of imported manufactures went up sharply.

Fourth, for the common people the War meant misery and fall in the standard of living.


Fifth, the far-reaching effect of the World War I, however, was the rise of Mahatma Gandhi who transformed the very nature of the Indian national movement.

b. Famine Situation:

Indeed, a famine situation developed after the end of the World War I in India.

This was due to various measures that the British government had taken to help the British to fight the War.


Food grains were pumped out of India for feeding the army in different War-fronts Official records show that valuable grains were exported from India to Mesopotamia by the British army.

The shortage of food in the domestic market due to its export for army needs created a sort of a famine situation in the country.

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