Social Scientist. v 2, no. 24 (July 1974) p. 43.

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Land Reforms in India Under the Plans

THE twin objectives—eradication of poverty and attainment of economic self reliance—as enunciated under the Five Year Plans were sought to be achieved by developing the two vital sectors of the economy, industry and agriculture. India being predominantly an agricultural country with three-fourths of its population directly dependent on land and contributing 49 per cent of the total National Income, the problem of agricultural development assumes primary importance. The above basic objectives were to be obtained in a restructured Indian society based on the 'socia-listic pattern5 of society so that the stress in the plan documents naturally had to be placed on the combined approach of economic growth and social justice. Hence the question of land reforms as a vital policy measure has always aroused a lot of controversy and emotion not only because it directly affects agricultural growth but also since it affects the existence of a vast majority of the toiling masses in the countryside.

According to the Plan documents considerable emphasis was laid on land reform starting with the First Plan in 1951. The major thrust of the programmes since then has been to ensure social justice and increase productivity. Based on the above principles the Fifth Plan draft document repeats the commitments made in the earlier plans wich were never fulfilled: that the objectives of land policy have been

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