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Indian Economy 1950-1990 Class 11 Notes CBSE Economics Chapter 2 (Free PDF Download)

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Revision Notes for CBSE Class 11 Indian Economic Development Chapter 2 - Free PDF Download

India’s economy has seen significant changes in past years which has formed action plans. Chapter 2 Indian economy class 11 notes deals with the liberalisation of an open economy in the country. It explains vital policies practised via Indian economy 1950 to 1990 class 11 notes PDF. 

Vedantu’s Class 11 Economics Chapter 2 notes discuss economic planning in which a central authority makes a plan to target development. Students looking to understand what an economy looked like in 1950 to 1990, and its impact today should get adequate answers from this chapter. 

Indian economic development class 11 notes chapter 2 gives an illustrative look into the topic. This chapter is both informative as well as engaging.

Download CBSE Class 11 Chapter-wise Economics Revision Notes 2023-24 PDF

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Access Class 11 Economics (Indian Economic Development) Chapter-2 Indian Economy 1950-1990 Notes

Economic System

The term "economic system" refers to a system for resolving an economy's basic concerns.

Different Form of Economic Systems: 

The different forms of economic systems are as follows:

  1. Capitalist economy: 

  • It is the one in which the private sector owns, controls, and operates the means of production. The primary goal of production is to earn profits. 

  • As a result, the key questions of what to make, how to produce, and for whom to produce are settled by market forces of demand and supply. 

  • So, in a capitalist society, goods are allocated among people based on their purchasing power to buy products and services rather than on their needs.

  1. Socialist economy: 

  • It is the one in which the government owns, controls, and operates the means of production. 

  • According to the demand of society, the government decides what, how, and for whom to produce. 

  • The factor that guides decision-making is social welfare.

  1. Mixed economy: 

  • It is a hybrid of the free market and the socialist economy. 

  • It coexists with both the private and public sectors. 

  • The government and the market work together to solve the three issues of what, how, and for whom to produce in a mixed economy. 

  • For its development, India adopted a ‘Mixed Economic System.'


A plan specifies how a country's resources should be utilised. It should have some broad aims as well as targets that must be met within a certain time frame. In India, plans that last five years are referred to as five-year plans. The Planning Commission was established in 1950, with the Prime Minister as its Chairperson.

The Goals of the Five-Year Plan

The five-year plan consists of the following goals. 

1. Growth: 

  • It involves the growth of a country's capacity to generate goods and services within its borders. Economic growth is defined as a rise in the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP). 

  • GDP is a method of measuring an economy's growth. 

  • The greater the GDP, the greater the ability of the general populace to benefit from the country's economic policies.

2. Modernisation: 

  • It includes the adoption of innovative production techniques by manufacturers in order to improve their output of goods and services. 

  • Innovation, inventions, and technological improvement all play a significant role in modernising our economy and increasing its productivity. 

  • One example would be the adoption of modern agricultural techniques, which resulted in greater productivity.

3. Self-reliance: 

  • It refers to the use of a country's own resources rather than resources purchased from other countries to promote economic growth and modernisation.

  • It refers to the use of a country's own resources rather than resources purchased from other countries to promote economic growth and modernisation.

4. Equity: 

  • It is important to ensure that the advantages of economic progress are shared equally among the poor and not just the wealthy. 

  • Every Indian should be able to meet his or her fundamental necessities, and there should be less inequality in wealth distribution.

The Service Sector

  • As a country grows, it goes through a process known as "structural change." In India's instance, the structural transformation is unusual. 

  • Typically, as a country develops, agriculture's proportion of the economy declines, and industry takes over. The service sector contributes more to GDP than the other two sectors at greater levels of development.

  • The structural transformation in India, on the other hand, is unusual. Agriculture accounted for more than half of India's GDP, as one would anticipate in such a poor country.

  • However, by 1990, the service sector had a share of 40.59 percent, which was higher than agriculture or manufacturing, as it is in industrialised countries. 

This characteristic of increasing service sector share was intensified in the post-1991 period, known as the “Service-led growth” trend, which signalled the beginning of globalisation.


Agriculture is the foundation of India's economic system and activity. It is a wide phrase that encompasses all that goes into cultivating crops and rearing animals in order to provide humans with food and materials that they can use and enjoy.

Features of Indian Agriculture: 

  • Reliance on rainfall: Agriculture in India is primarily dependent on the rainfall. If the rainfall is favourable, the crops will produce more; if the rainfall is poor, the crops will fail. Floods can wreak havoc on our crops at times. Since irrigation facilities are limited, agriculture is reliant on rainfall.

  • Small land holding: A landholding is the amount of land owned by an individual or family. Land holdings in India are not just limited, but also dispersed. It is extremely difficult to develop small and dispersed land holdings.

  • A limitation of production: Productivity, or output per hectare of land, is exceedingly low in India. A low level of output signifies a poor level of productivity. Despite the fact that extensive regions are under cultivation, low production may result from fragmentation. 

  • Unemployment: Farmers find work only a few months of the year due to insufficient irrigation facilities and unpredictable rains. Hence, their labour potential is not being utilised effectively, and they remain unemployed for months. 

  • Technology that is backward: Agriculture producing methods and equipment are traditional in India. It is related to people's poverty and illiteracy. The main cause of low productivity is traditional obsolete technology.

  • Tenant-landlord disputes: Owners were rarely tillers of the land in earlier times, and they never shared the expense of production. Instead, they distributed the output. They were mainly concerned with increasing their rental income. Farmers were given very little money for sustenance. As a result, agriculture has regressed and stagnated.

Problems of Indian Agriculture:

In comparison to other countries, India's agricultural statistics show that it lags in both land and labour productivity.

  1. Institutional Problems

  1. Faulty tenancy reforms: The land tenure system in India is riddled with flaws. Tenant insecurity was a major issue, especially before independence, when absentee landlords and fraudulent transfers of land occurred in several parts of the country.

  2. Inadequate agricultural credit: The institutional financing sources available are insufficient to meet the needs of agricultural credit. Farmers continue to rely on moneylenders for credit. 

  3. Holding capacity: The average holding size in India is predicted to fall from 1.5 hectares in 1990-91 to 1.3 hectares in 2000-01. As a result, agricultural holdings are uneconomically small and dispersed.

  1. General Problems

  1. Population pressure on land: Farm sizes are smaller in areas with a higher population density. Greater demand for inorganic fertiliser is also associated with higher population density. As population density increases, farm revenue per hectare drops.

  2. Negligence of natural resources: When it comes to agriculture, India has failed to protect and exploit its natural resources. Little was done to conserve resources, the majority of which were tied to irrigation. The stories of migration and acute water shortages in the whole country demonstrate the gravity of the situation.

  3. Agricultural Instability: Indian agriculture is always susceptible to insecurity as a result of weather fluctuations and the risk of monsoon. As a result, the production of food grains and other crops varies greatly, causing agricultural produce prices to vary continuously. This has generated an element of insecurity in the country's agricultural operations.

  1. Technological Problems

  1. Production technique: Farmers in India have been using archaic and inefficient farming methods and techniques. Only in recent years have Indian farmers begun to embrace upgraded instruments such as steel ploughs, seed drills, barrows, hoes, and so on.

  2. Irrigation facilities are in short supply: The absence of guaranteed and regulated water supply through artificial irrigation facilities continues to be a problem for Indian agriculture. As a result, Indian farmers must rely heavily on rainfall, which is neither consistent nor even.

  3. Cropping pattern: Indicators of sector development and diversification include the cropping pattern, which displays the percentage of an area planted in different crops throughout time. As cash crop prices rise, more land is being shifted away from food crop production and into cash or commercial crops. This has exacerbated the country's food situation.

Reforms in Indian Agriculture: 

The agricultural industry did not experience expansion or equity during colonial control. Institutional Reforms and the Green Revolution were implemented by the government to address the concerns of agricultural growth and equity.

  1.  Land Reforms: 

  • The tillers of the lands were not the landowners during the British era. As a result, a farmer did not have true possession of the property. Ownership was held by the middlemen, such as zamindars, jagirdars, and others. The farmer would cultivate the land while paying the rent to the zamindars.

  • These farmers were inevitably exploited when landowners ignored agricultural needs and were only concerned with the rent they collected from these labourers. 

  • In order to fix this situation, the government of a newly independent India had a few goals in mind.

  • The main goal was to make systematic and comprehensive improvements to the country's agrarian structure.

  • Its secondary goal was to eliminate the intermediaries of India's semi-feudal landlordism system, i.e. the zamindars.

  • Ensure economic and societal equity while also ensuring social justice for past injustices against farmers. The land reforms would also prevent landowners from exploiting tenant farmers.

  • Finally, these farmers must be motivated and techniques to boost agricultural productivity must be implemented.

  1. Land Ceiling Act: 

  • This entails determining the maximum amount of land that an individual can own. 

  • The goal of the land ceiling was to decrease land ownership concentration in a few hands and promote agricultural equity. 

Note: West Bengal and Kerala had effective land reforms because their governments were committed to the policy of giving land to the tiller, whereas other states did not have the same level of devotion, and enormous disparities in landholdings still exist today.

  1. Green Revolution: 

  • The Green Revolution began in 1965, when the first High Yielding Variety (HYV) seeds were introduced into Indian agriculture. This was combined with better and more effective irrigation and the proper use of fertilisers to boost agricultural yield. The Green Revolution had the desired effect of making India self-sufficient in food grains.

  • The HYV seeds performed better in wheat crops and were more effective in areas with adequate irrigation. As a result, the first stage of the Green Revolution concentrated on states with stronger infrastructure, like Punjab and Tamil Nadu.

  • Several other states received HYV seeds during the second phase. Other crops besides wheat were also included in the strategy.

  • Proper irrigation is a prerequisite for the HYV seeds. Crops grown from HYV seeds require alternate quantities of water delivery throughout their growth. As a result, crops cannot rely on monsoons. The Green Revolution greatly enhanced India's inland irrigation infrastructure around fields.

  • Finally, technology and machinery were introduced that greatly aided the promotion of commercial farming in the country.

Note: India's agriculture is critically dependent on the monsoon, and if the monsoon failed to arrive, farmers were in trouble unless they had access to irrigation, which very few did. The green revolution permanently ended the agricultural standstill that had occurred during colonial administration. This refers to the significant rise in food grain production as a result of the usage of high yielding variety (HYV) seeds, particularly for wheat and rice.

Marketed Surplus: 

Farmers sold a significant amount of agricultural produce in the market, and the increased output impacted the economy. The portion of agricultural produce sold on the market by farmers is referred to as the marketed surplus. The increase in marketable surplus resulted in improved agricultural growth. As a result, the price of food grains fell in comparison to other consumer goods.

Positive effects of Green Revolution:

  • Increase in performance and productivity.

  • Increase in commercial farming.

  • Use of modern technologies such as HYV seeds, fertilisers, etc., has an impact on the social revolution. 

  • Increased earnings.

  • Growth in employment.

  • A significant increase in the average.

Negative effects of Green Revolution:

  • Limited to specific crops and places, such as wheat and rice-growing states like Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Andhra Pradesh.

  • Partial poverty alleviation.

  • Land reforms were ignored.

  • Widening of the income gap between small and large farmers.

  • Degradation of the environment.

  1. Subsidies: 

In the context of agriculture, subsidy refers to the provision of inputs to farmers at a lower cost than the market price.

Role of Subsidies:

  • Small farmers were given low-interest loans and fertiliser subsidies by the government, ensuring that they had access to the necessary inputs. As a result, both small and large farmers benefited from the green revolution.

  • The services provided by government-established research institutes significantly lowered the chance of small farmers being wrecked when pests attack their crops.

The Debate Over Subsidies:

  • The economic validity of agricultural subsidies is currently a strongly discussed topic. It is widely acknowledged that the government needed to provide subsidies to encourage farmers in general, and small farmers, to use the new HYV technology.

  • Second, any new technology will be viewed as a hazardous proposition by farmers. As a result, subsidies were required to encourage farmers to try out the new technology.

Arguments in favour of subsidies: 

  • Some argue that the government should continue to provide agricultural subsidies because farming is a risky business in India. 

  • The majority of farmers are impoverished, and without subsidies, they will be unable to purchase the necessary inputs. 

  • If subsidies are eliminated, it will increase the gap between rich and poor farmers, and violate the purpose of equity.

Arguments against Subsidies: 

  • Some economists feel that once a technology proves viable and widespread adoption, subsidies should be phased out because its objective has been fulfilled. 

  • Furthermore, while subsidies are intended to aid farmers, a significant portion of the fertiliser subsidy goes to the fertiliser business. Farmers in more wealthier areas gain disproportionately from the subsidies. 

  • As a result, it is suggested that continuing with fertiliser subsidies is pointless because they do not benefit the target demographic and place a significant financial burden on the government.

Industry and Trade

Role of Industrial Sector of India: 

The importance of industrialization in a country's economic prosperity cannot be overstated. Economically affluent economies are those that have advanced industrially. Industrialisation is a prerequisite for an economy's final take-off.

Role of Industrial Sector:

  • Meeting the ever-increasing demands of a society.

  • Increasing people's earnings.

  • Significant room for expansion.

  • Important for a significant number of exports.

  • It is a source of employment.

  • It promotes modernization.

  • Growth of infrastructure


Public and Private Sectors in Indian Industrial Development: 

Public Sector: 

The public sector includes all industrial and commercial firms owned by the government and administered by the government, either directly or through other organisations on its behalf.

Role of the public sector in India:

  • Filling gaps in the industrial structure to promote rapid economic development.

  • Promoting enough infrastructural facilities to support economic progress.

  • Engaging in economic activities in those strategically important development areas where the private sector could skew the national goal's spirit.

  • Avoiding monopolies and concentration of power in the hands of a few.

  • Bridging the gap between the rich and the poor to reduce discrepancies in income and wealth distribution.

Private Sector: 

It refers to businesses that are owned, managed, and controlled by a single person or a group of people. Because the government has no influence over private firms, it cannot intervene in their operations. It is the type of company unit that is run with the goal of making money.

Role of Private Sector:

  • India, as a mixed economy, has placed a high value on the private sector in order to achieve quick economic development. 

  • In the fields of industries, trade, and services, the government has assigned the private sector a distinct function. 

  • Agriculture and related businesses such as dairy, animal husbandry, poultry, and so on, which are India's most dominant industry, are completely controlled by the private sector. 

  • As a result, the private sector is playing an increasingly vital role in managing the entire agricultural industry and, as a result, ensuring that millions of people have access to food.

Industrial Policy Resolution 1956 (IPR 1956): 

  • The Industrial Policy Resolution of 1956 was passed with the purpose of the state controlling the economic commanding heights. 

  • The following industrial strategy goals were set forth in the 1956 resolution to fasten the industrialisation process.

  • Promoting the development of heavy industries.

  • To increase the size of the public sector.

  • To reduce income and wealth inequality.

  • To prevent monopolies and wealth and income concentration in the hands of a small group of people.

This resolution categorises industries into three groups.

  • The first group included industries that would be solely owned by the government.

  • The second group included industries in which the private sector might assist the public sector's efforts, with the government bearing complete responsibility for establishing new units.

  • The third group included the remaining private-sector industries.

Licensing was also utilised to boost enterprises in underserved areas. Certain concessions were made to such units, such as tax breaks and lower-cost power. This policy's goal was to foster regional equity. This contributed to the diversification of output. The private sector was obliged to seek a licence in order to create a manufacturing unit, and they also had to obtain a licence in order to expand their existing firm or enhance their production capacity.

Small-Scale Industry (SSI): 

The Village and Small-Scale Industries Committee, commonly known as the Karve Committee, stated in 1955 that small-scale industries may be used to promote rural development.

The maximum investment allowed on a unit's assets is used to define a "small-scale industry." In 1950, a small-scale industrial unit was defined as one that invested little more than Rs. 5 lakhs; today, the highest investment authorised is Rs. 1 crore.

Role of Small-scale Industry: 

  • Focused on high-intensity labour.

  • It relies on self-employment.

  • It requires less capital.

  • Promotion of exports.

  • Large-scale enterprises' seed beds

  • Demonstrates flexibility in terms of location.

Issues faced by Small-Scale Industries:

  • Financial difficulties.

  • Scarcity of raw materials.

  • Marketing difficulty.

  • Out-of-date machinery and equipment.

  • Large-scale industries pose a threat.

Trade Policy : Import Substitution 

Import substitution or trade policy is a policy that aims to replace or substitute imported goods with domestically produced goods. In India's first seven five-year plans it was often referred to as an “inward-looking trade strategy.”

  • The government's major goal with this strategy was to limit imports and safeguard native businesses from international competition.

  • Tariffs and quotas were used to protect against imports.

  1. Tariffs are monetary limits on imported goods in the form of a tax; they raise the cost of imports and discourage their use.

  2. Import quotas are non-monetary or quantitative limitations on the number of goods that can be imported.

Tariffs and quotas have the effect of restricting imports and so protecting native businesses from foreign competition.

Foreign Trade: 

At the period of independence, raw materials were abundantly exported from India to Britain, while completed goods from Britain were imported into India. Notably, the trade balance was positive. 

Following independence, India's foreign trade experienced significant changes, including: 

  • A decrease in the percentage share of agricultural exports.

  • Increase in the proportion of manufactured items in total exports.

  • A shift in the direction of export and import trade.

Effect of Policies on Industrial Development: 

The first seven five-year plans had a significant impact on the industrial sector. The industrial sector's contribution to GDP climbed from 13% in 1950-51 to 24.6 percent in 1990-91. The increase in the industry's share of GDP is a key sign of progress. 

The industrial sector's yearly growth rate of 6% during the time is commendable. Protection from foreign competition allowed indigenous industries in the electronics and automobile sectors to emerge that would not have otherwise been possible. Some industries were privatised, while others remained in the public sector.

Permit Licence Raj

The requirement for obtaining a licence to start a business was abused by industrial houses; a large industrialist would seek a licence not to start a new business, but to prevent competitors from doing so. Excessive regulation, known as the permit licence raj, stopped certain enterprises from becoming more efficient.

Hence issues like government licensing, evaluation of the success and extent to which the public sector fulfils its social objective, competition from foreign countries, control by the private sector led to the introduction of a new economic policy in the year 1991.

Economics Class 11 Chapter 2 Notes

Chapter 2 Indian Economy class 11 notes are both straightforward as well as concise in their explanation of various topics. They depict the causes and need for an excellent liberal economic policy. 

This section discusses various policies overtaken by the Indian government and its reaction to the economy. 

Class 11 Economics Notes Chapter 2 - Capitalism

Notes of chapter Indian economy 1950 to 1990 explains the partake of capitalism which is a significant economic pronouncement. This structure decides what services and goods are to be produced in a country. Moreover, distribution and money flow are also planned based on demand and supply.

Indian Economy 1950 to 1990 Class 11 Notes - Socialism

In this section, these notes explain the function of socialism. This is a form of an economic plan that takes care of the interest of society. Class 11th economics chapter 2 notes discuss this concept to aid young learners about Indian economy.

Notes of Chapter 2 Indian Economy Class 12 - Five-Year Plan

This section discusses changes brought by a five-year plan made by the Indian government and outlines how it was done. These reasons behind India’s decision to open up the economy is elaborated here.  Moreover, an introduction of GDP,  equity, self-reliance schemes, production evaluation, etc., are discussed.

Class 11 Economics Ch 2 Notes - Agriculture

This section discusses this economic deregulation of the agricultural sector. Other topics that are talked about are essential in the economy, problems related to the agriculture sector, reforms needed in agriculture, market surplus, etc.

Indian Economic Development Chapter 2 Notes - Economy Types

Next, these notes go on to explain the nature and meaning of economy and outsourcing. The three types of economy, namely socialist, mixed and capitalist economies, are described.

Apart from these topics, Chapter 2 Indian economy class 11 notes contain a variety of sub-topics of the economy. Students need to gather quality notes to construct marks for fetching answers. For this purpose, Vedantu has been offering budget-friendly notes and solutions prepared by professionals.

FAQs on Indian Economy 1950-1990 Class 11 Notes CBSE Economics Chapter 2 (Free PDF Download)

1. What do you understand about a mixed economy? What are its merits?

A mixed economy is a part of Indian economy that affects both the public and private sector. These sectors operate parallelly. In this, a market offers goods and services as per its availability or production. But in case private industry is unable to cope with demand, then the government offers essential and interests to the market.

The merits of a mixed economy are discussed below:

  • Mixed economy gives a chance to the private sector or industries to make a profit and contribute equally to economic development.

  • This also ensures stability and development in a balanced way

  • There is a constant battle between the two sectors, which improves productivity and income.

2. What is the need for economic reforms in India?

The primary need for financial reforms in India is to control the increased fiscal deficit. The government previously did not have sufficient money to pay up its bills and was trapped in debt. Moreover, the growing rise in prices caused problems for the common masses. In the end, the government had to appeal to the IMF (International Monetary Fund) for a loan of seven million dollars. In exchange, it decided to liberalise the economy. 

Moreover, the Indian government has taken the initiative to help local workers and manufacturers become self- dependent. The five-year plan is an excellent example of economic reform brought by the Indian government.

3. What are the goals of the five-year plan?

Indian economy has a planned scheme to control the money flow. The goals of five-year plans are discussed below:

  • The GDP is a target that implies an economic growth which is the result of production. The increase in production of goods and services in an economy must remain constant.

  • The economy uses modernisation which uses technology to scale up the manufacturing of goods and services.

  • Indian economy uses self-reliance to avoid importing goods that are made in India. This is done to encourage local handicrafts and production.

  • Final part is equity which maintains a proportion of income distribution for all sections of society.

4. Where can I download the latest notes of Chapter 2  of  Class 11 Economics?

The latest notes for Chapter 2 of Class 11 Economics can be found on the Vedantu website. These notes can make your basics from Chapter 2 clear and are also great for last-minute revisions before the exam. To download the Class 11 Economics Chapter 2 Notes, follow these steps:

  • Visite Chapter 2 Class 11 Economics revision notes on Vedantu.

  • Next, you will be redirected to the page with the notes.

  • Here, you will get the option to download the notes. 

  • Click on the download PDF option.

  • The PDF will get downloaded on your device. You can now study from it in PDF format offline.

5. Can I download the notes for Chapter 2 of Economics Class 11 for free?

Yes, you can download the notes for the second chapter of Class 11 Economics in a PDF format for free anytime. Vedantu is a one stop solution for all your queries and doubts in the field of academics. It is known for providing crisp yet informative solutions in the easiest possible way. Vedantu is student and parents friendly and can be accessed very easily at home with just an internet connection.

6. What is Chapter 2 of  Economics Class 11 about?

Chapter 2 of Economics Class 11 is “Indian Economic Development”. This chapter works as the base or fundamental study material that helps students develop a proper understanding of the subject starting from its history. Students of Class 11 are generally expected to be perfect in what they write in the examination, but it is important that they get an exact idea of all the topics and subtopics first and the lesson which it wants to convey. Students should refer to Vedantu's Class 11 Economics Chapter 2 Revision Notes for their preparation.

7. What do you mean by capitalist economy according to Chapter 2 of Class 11 Economics?

When you talk about the economy it means the financial or monetary status and this status can be of various types depending on the societal hierarchy of income. So the term capitalism refers to someone with a mindset to make the most amount of profit from its consumers. This type of economy can exist in a society where there is both high demand and supply of consumer goods so that the consumption is higher and the income is maximum. It also somewhat depends on the nature of the workforce in that society.

8. Why is agriculture important in the economy according to Chapter 2 of Class 11 Economics?

 Apart from being the major source for producing the food grains and other edible substances for the living organisms to sustain and grow, agriculture also plays an important role in boosting the economy of the country. In a country like India, agriculture forms the base of the economy where the majority of earnings generate from it. Agriculture is also important for generating employment for many people, improving trade practices and industrial development.