Highlight the salient Features of India’s Pre-independence Occupational Structure

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 9th, 2023

The salient features of India’s pre-independence occupational structure include a predominance of agriculture, lack of opportunities in the Industries, unequal distribution among different sectors, unbalanced growth of individuals that affects the economy, and regional imbalance. India’s occupational structure before independence didn’t show much growth during the British period.

India’s Pre-Independence Occupational Structure

The predominance of Agriculture is one of the salient features of the Pre-independence occupational structure of India. India has always been a land devoted to agricultural practices. About 75% of the Indian workforce was engaged in agriculture (directly and indirectly).

During the colonial period, there was massive poverty, and people were illiterate, because of which they engaged themselves in agricultural practices like farming and earning their livelihood.

Features of India’s Pre-Independence Occupational

The other salient features of India’s pre-independence occupational structure are as follows-

  • Lack of employment opportunities in the Industries: Though the manufacturing sector was another vital segment then, only a few skilled individuals could get a job because of the lack of employment opportunities in the industries. Around 10% of people used to work in the industrial and manufacturing sectors.
  • Unequal Distribution among Sectors: There was a massive imbalance in the occupational structure in terms of the distribution of the workforce among the agricultural (primary sector), manufacturing (secondary sector), and service sectors (tertiary sector)
  • Regional Imbalance: There was a poor condition of occupational structure because of the regional variations. Bengal, Bombay, and Madras Presidency experienced the rise of the manufacturing industry and a simultaneous fall in the workforce associated with agriculture. In contrast, Punjab, Rajasthan, and Orissa highly depended on agriculture.

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