What were the early initiatives taken by the Planning Commission for building new India?
1. Like USSR, the Indian Planning Commission opted for five-year plans (FYP). The idea was very simple—the Government of India prepares a document which has a plan for all its income and expenditure for the next five years.
2. Accordingly the budget of the central and all the state governments is divided into two parts—non-plan budget, which is spent on routine items annually, and plan budget, which is spent on a five year basis according to the priorities fixed by the plan.
3. The draft of the First Five-Year Plan and then the actual plan documents released in December 1951 generated a lot of excitement in the country. People from all walks of life—academicians, journalists, government and private sector employees, industrialists, farmers and politicians discussed and debated the documents extensively.
4. The excitement with planning reached its peak with the launching of the second Five-Year Plan in 1961. The Fourth Plan was due to start in 1966
By this time, the novelty of planning had declined considerably, and moreover, India was facing an acute economic crisis. The government decided to take a ‘plan holiday’. Although many criticisms emerged both about the process and the priorities of these plans, the foundation of India’s economic development was firmly in place by then