Answer :

Soon after India became independent, the elected government paid attention to the development of different areas which were underdeveloped and lacked basic infrastructure. The Planning Commission was set up in March 1950 to look after the areas of development. The followings are the points explaining the issues which were given importance:

1. Poverty, underemployment, unemployment, low per capita income were given importance in the planning. They were recognized as social evils and as destructors of human resource.

2. The aim to reduce illiteracy among the masses and to increase awareness about education.

3. To improve health conditions, development of hospitals, access to medicines in remote areas, sanitation.

4. Setting up of a State Reorganization Commission to look into the matters of demand relating to the creation of new states, etc.

But after the first phase of independence, in the 1980s, the emphasis was laid on the liberalisation of the economy by the Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.

• His governments’ first budget in 1985 moved towards a more liberalized system by removing some of the checks and controls that were in place.

• He viewed economic growth as a principal instrument of ensuring a dignified place for India as a global power.

• Freer imports and exports were promoted. The licensing of the industries was neglected.

• Foreign direct investments were approved in many areas. There was a reduction in tariffs.

• Many public policies were ended.

• The economy was made more market and service oriented by allowing and increasing private and foreign investments.

Still, there are debates going on if the policy of liberalization has done harms and to which extent and whether they are sustainable and relevant in today's context.

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