Model Question and Answers for APSC | Examine how the decline of traditional artisanal industry in colonial India crippled the rural economy.
Examine how the decline of traditional artisanal industry in colonial India crippled the rural economy.
Ans: By the standards of the 17th and 18th centuries, before the advent of the Europeans in India, India was the 'industrial workshop' of the world. India's traditional village economy was characterized by the "blending of agriculture and handicrafts".
The decline of the traditional artisanal industry:
- Due to a lack of patronage once rulers lost their kingdoms
- British did not support artisans after their industrial revolution
- Cheap factory-made products from Britain
- British promoted one-way free trade that destroyed the market of artisans
The decline of traditional artisanal industry in colonial India crippled the rural economy:
- The decline of traditional occupations led to the moving of artisans towards agriculture for livelihood which tremendously increased both dependency and pressure on land.
- Due to excess labour wages fell and exploitation increased, Eviction and illegal dues were common
- Such overcrowding of agriculture badly affected its efficiency. Present problems of subdivision and fragmentation of land holdings, over-cultivation or cultivation of inferior and unproductive land, , are the direct effects of British rule.
- Indian handloom industry was destroyed by the introduction of power looms and cotton farmers no longer enjoyed the available market for handloom.
- Created a bogey of rural disguised unemployment and
- Women spinners who earned their livelihoods were the worst victims of de-industrialization.
Thus, the process of de-industrialization proved to be a process of pure immiseration for several million persons. Exporter India has converted into an importer India. A self-sufficient village economy gave way to the colonial economy and India was transformed into an agricultural colony to produce and supply raw materials.