Why, despite the implementation of green revolution, 65 per cent of our population continued to be engaged in the agriculture sector till 1990?
Although Indian agricultural production increased substantially that enabled India to attain the status of self-sufficiency in food grains but this increase is substantial only in comparison to food grain production in the past. Further, India failed to achieve structural transformation associated with the agricultural revolution and development. That is, in other words, industrial and service sector failed to generate significant employment opportunities in order to attract and absorb excess agricultural labour. The agricultural contribution to GDP has fallen from 51% in 1960-61 to 44% in 1970-71, on the other hand, the share of industry and service sector in India’s GDP increased merely from 19% to 23% and from 30% to 33% during the same period. Meantime, the percentage of population dependent on agriculture decreased merely from 67.50% (in 1950) to 64.9% (in 1990). Hence, the industrial and service sector growth was not very significant and, hence, failed to employ and attract surplus labour from agricultural sector. This may be because of the flaws in the economic policies that became the bottleneck for the growth of secondary and tertiary sector.