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Indian Geography / Industries in India

Important Industries in India

Growth Poles are important in the development of industries in India. An industrial centre from which the process of development penetrates into the surrounding region, which in turn results in the comprehensive development in the area, is called Growth Pole.

Though there are many minor and major industrial regions of India, identification of growth pole is crucial in the development of the backward areas. Growth Pole plays a vital role in nullifying the regional imbalances. Absence of Forward and Backward linkages leads to no growth in the surrounding areas.

Sugar Industry

  • India is world's largest sugarcane producer but it ranks fourth in terms of sugar production. It is self-sufficient in sugar production and it also exports sugar.

    Many of the sugar factories in India are located in Uttar Pradesh because the state remains to be the largest producer of sugarcane.

  • Sugarcane has to be crushed within 24 hours of its cutting. So, sugar industries are always located in the vicinity of sugarcane fields. In India, sugar factories are small as compared to the factories in Australia, Indonesia and Cuba.

  • As Sugar industry remains to be a seasonal industry, labour cannot be engaged throughout the year in this industry. The byproducts of sugar industry are used in many other industries.

    Bagasse is used in paper and cardboard industries, Molasses is used in chemicals, liquor and power alcohol industries, Press-mud is used in carbon paper and shoe polish industries.

  • The main centres of sugar industries are located in Meerut and Saharanpur in Ganga-Yamuna Doab, Gorakhpur and Gonda in Eastern Uttar Pradesh, Darbhanga, Champaran and Saran in Bihar, Pune, Satara, Sangli, Akola and Ahmednagar in Maharashtra, Mysore, Mandya, Bellary and Gulbarga in Karnataka, Coimbatore and Tanjore in Tamil Nadu, Nizamabad in Telangana, Anakapalli and Tanuku in Andhra Pradesh.

  • The main problems in sugar industry are frequent fluctuations in demand and supply, sometimes we will be exporting and some other times importing, lack of coordination between cane growers and sugar factory owners, inferior quality cane is cultivated in Northern India, etc.

Cement Industry

  • The first cement industry was established in Madras in the year 1904. As it did not function well, it was closed down.

    Later, at Katni in Madhya Pradesh, at Lakheri in Rajasthan and at Porbandar in Gujarat, cement industries were started. These three can be considered as the real beginning of cement industries.

  • Generally cement factories are located along National Highways and railway lines for easier transportation. Cement per capita consumption in India is very low when compared to the advanced countries.

  • The centres of cement production are Katni, Satna and Rewa in Madhya Pradesh, Puliyur and Madukkarai in Tamil Nadu, Porbandar and Bhuj in Gujarat, Wadi and Gulbarga in Karnataka, Basant Nagar and Mancherial in Telangana, Yerraguntla and Jaggayyapeta in Andhra Pradesh.

Paper Industry

  • Paper is generally a forest based industry requiring bamboo, sabai grass, bagasse, straw, etc. and similarly chemicals like Sodium Sulphate, Ammonium Sulphate, Caustic soda, Sulphur, Chlorine, clay, lime, resin, etc.

  • The paper industry comprises of two industries, (i) Pulp manufacturing industries, which are located in the midst of the forest, where wood and Bamboo is located and (ii) Paper manufacturing industries which are generally located at port cities.

    India is importing pulp from Finland, Sweden, Russia and Canada.

  • The locations of paper mills in India are Vikhroli, Thane, Ballarpur and Nashik in Maharashtra, Nepanagar (first newsprint manufacturing factory), Ratlam and Hoshangabad in Madhya Pradesh, Dandeli, Bhadravati and Belagola in Karnataka, Bhadrachalam and Sirpur in Telangana, Dhubri and Nagaon in Assam, Brajarajnagar and Rayagada in Odisha.

Fertilizer Industries

  • In India, the first fertilizer factory was established in Sindri, Jharkhand. The fertilizer industry in India uses byproducts of coal mining, oil refinery plants, iron and steel plants as its raw materials and hence most of the fertilizer plants are located near to these plant areas.

  • Fertilizers produced in India are basically Ammonia based and to some extent Phosphate based and complex NPK based fertilizers.

    As raw materials for Phosphatic variety are less available in India, they are imported from Morocco and Algeria. Nitrogen based chemical fertilizers are not good in the longer run.

  • The important centres of fertilizer industry are Barauni, Gorakhpur, Panipat, Nangal, Vadodara, Aluva, Kakinada, Visakhapatnam, Trombay, Paradip, etc.

Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Industry

  • Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Industry in India made a tremendous progress and is one among the fastest growing industrial sector. We are nearly self-sufficient in this area.

    India was able to develop its own technologies and obtain foreign technologies for manufacturing basic life saving drugs.

  • India manufactures a wide range of bulk drugs which include steroids and hormones, vitamins, antibiotics, semisynthetic penicillins, synthetic phytochemicals, etc.

    A wide range of bulk drugs and formulations are exported to many countries like USA, Russia, African and European countries. We also import some drugs of new discoveries.

  • In India, there exists both Government and private controlled pharmaceutical industries. Companies like Hindustan Antibiotics Limited, Indian Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Ltd (IDPL) and Bengal Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Ltd are some of the pharmaceutical industries controlled by the Government.

    Some of the important pharmaceutical companies in the private sector include Aurobindo Pharma, Sun Pharma, Dr.Reddy's Laboratories, Glaxo, Pfizer, Alembic, etc.