The traditional handicrafts industries were ruined under the British rule. Do you agree with this view? Give reasons in support of your answer.
Yes, I agree with the given statement that the traditional handicrafts industries were ruined under British rule. Even as the country’s world famous handicraft industries declined, no ; corresponding modern industrial base was allowed to come up to take pride of place so long enjoyed by the former.
The following are the reasons in favour of the statement:
(i) De-industrialisation—The primary motive of the colonial government behind this policy of systematically de-industrialising India was two-fold, which is described as follows :
(a) To reduce India to the status of a mere exporter of important raw materials for the upcoming imodern industries in Britain.
(i) Roads and railways : The built roads served
the interests of mobilising the army and shifting raw materials. The introduction of railways occurred in India in 1890.
(ii) Water transport : Inland and oceanic water
ways were also developed during the British rule.
(iii) Posts : During British rule, postal services were developed.
(iv) Telegraphs : The British government introduced expensive system of electric telegraph in India. This system was useful for maintaining law and order.
(b) To turn India into a sprawling market for the finished products of modern industries so that their continued expansion could be ensured to the maximum advantage of their home country i.e., Britain.
(ii) Capital Goods Industries were Lacking—The policy of Britishers was simply to develop those industries which would never be competitive to the British industry. They always wanted Indians to be dependent on Britain for the supply of capital goods and heavy equipments. Thus, the development of a few consumer goods industries were witnessed during the British rule.