Mineral and Energy Resources
Category : UPSC
Mineral and Energy Resources
Contents of the Chapter
India is endowed with a rich variety of mineral resources due to its varied geological structure. Bulk of the valuable minerals are products of pre-Paleozoic age mainly associated with metamorphic and igneous rocks of the peninsular India. The vast alluvial plain tract of north India is devoid of minerals of economic use.
The mineral resources provide the country with the necessary base for industrial development. The availability of various types of mineral and energy resources in the country.
Mode of Occurrence of Minerals
Minerals generally occur in these forms:
Rat-Hole Mining. Do you know that most of the minerals in India are nationalized and their extraction is possible only after obtaining due permission from the government? But in most of the tribal areas of the north-east India, minerals are owned by individuals or communities. In Meghalaya, there are large deposits of coal, iron ore, limestone and dolomite etc. Coal mining in Jowal and Cherapunjee is done by family member in the form of a long narrow tunnel, known as ‘Rat hole’ mining.
Agencies Involved in the Exploration of minerals
In India, systematic surveying, prospecting and exploration for minerals is undertaken by the Geological Survey of India (GSI), Oil and Natural Gas Commission (ONGC), Mineral Exploration Corporation Ltd. (MECL), National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC), Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM), Bharat Gold Mines Ltd. (BGML), Hindustan Copper Ltd. (HCL), National Aluminum Company Ltd, (NALCO) and the Departments of Mining and Geology in various states.
Distribution of Minerals in India
Most of the metallic minerals in India occur in the peninsular plateau region in the old crystalline rocks. Over 97 percent of coal reserves occur in the valleys of Damodar, Sone, Mahanadi and Godavari. Petroleum reserves are located in the sedimentary basins of Assam, Gujarat and Mumbai High i.e. off-shore region in the Arabian. New reserves have been located in the Krishna-Godavari and Kaveri basins. Most of the major mineral resources occur to the east of a line linking Mangalore and Kanpur.
Minerals are generally concentrated in three broad belts In India. There may be some sporadic occurrence here and there in isolated pockets. These belts are:
The North-Eastern Plateau Region. This belt covers Chotanagpur (Jharkhand), Orissa Plateau, West Bengal and parts of Chhattisgarh,
The South-Western Plateau Region: This belt extends over Karnataka, Goa and contiguous Tamil Nadu uplands and Kerala. This belt is rich in ferrous metals and bauxite. It also contains high grade Iron ore, manganese and limestone. This belt packs in coal deposits except naively lignite.
This belt does not have as diversified mineral deposits as the north-eastern belt. Kerala has deposits of monazite and thorium, bauxite clay, Goa has iron ore deposits.
The North-Western Region: This belt extends along Aravali in Rajasthan and part of Gujarat and minerals are associated with Dharwar system of rocks. Copper, zinc have been major minerals. Rajasthan is rich in building stones i.e. sandstone, granite, marble. Gypsum and Fuller’s earth deposits are also extensive. Dolomite and limestone provide raw materials for cement industry. Gujarat is known for its petroleum deposits. Gujarat and Rajasthan both have rich sources of salt.
The Himalayan belt is another mineral belt where copper, lead, zinc, cobalt and tungsten are known to occur. They occur on both the eastern and western parts. Assam valley has mineral oil deposits. Besides oil resources are also found in off-shore-areas near Mumbai Coast (Mumbai High).
Ferrous Mineral: Ferrous minerals such as iron ore, manganese, chromite, etc., provide a strong base for the development of metallurgical Industries. Our country is well-placed in respect of ferrous minerals both in reserves and production.
Iron Ore: India is endowed with fairly abundant resources of iron ore. It has the largest reserve of iron ore in Asia. The two main types of ore found in our country are hematite and magnetite. It has great demand in international market due to its superior quality. The iron ore mines occur in close proximity to the coal fields in the north-eastern plateau region of the country which adds to their advantage. The total reserves of iron ore in the country were about 20 billion tones in the year 2004-05. About 95 per cent of total reserves of iron ore is located in the States of Orissa, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka Goa, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. In Orissa, iron ore occurs in a series of hill ranges in Sundergarh, Mayurbhanj and Jhar. The important mines are Gurumahisani, Sulaipet, Badampahar (Mayurbhaj), Kiruburu (Kendujhar) and Bonai (Sundergarh). Similar hill ranges, Jharkhand has some of the oldest iron ore mines and most of the iron and steel plants are located around them. Most of the important mines such as Noamundi and Gua are located in Poorbi and Pashchimi Singhbhum districts. This belt further extends to Durg, Dantewara and Bailadila. Dalli, Rajhara in Durg are the important mines of iron ore in the country. In Karnataka, iron ore deposits occur in Sandur-Hospet area of Bellary district, Baba Budan hills and Kudremukh in Chikmagalur district and parts of Shimoga, Chitradurg and Tumkur districts. The districts of Chandrapur, Bhandara and Ratnagiri in Maharashtra, Karimnagar, Warangal, Kurnool, Cuddapah and Anantapur districts of Andhra Pradesh, Salem and Nilgiris- districts of Tamil Nadu are other iron mining regions. Goa has also emerged as an important producer of iron ore.
Manganese: Manganese is an important raw material for smelting of iron ore and also used for manufacturing Ferro alloys. Manganese deposits are found in almost all geological formations; however, it is mainly associated with Dharwar system.
Orissa is the leading producer of Manganese. Major mines in Orissa are located in the central part of the iron ore belt of India, particularly in Bonai, Keudujhar, Sundergarh, Gangpur, Koraput, Kalahandi and Bolangir.
Karnataka is another major producer and here the mines are located in Dharwar, Bellary, Belgaum, North Canara, Chikmagalur, Shimoga, Chitradurg and Tumkur. Maharashtra is also an important producer of manganese which is mined in Nagpur Bhandara and Ratnagiri districts. The disadvantage to these mines is that they are located far from steel plants. The manganese belt of Madhya Pradesh extends in a belt in Balaghat-Chhindwara-Nimar-Mandla and Jhabua districts districts. Andhra Pradesh, Goa, and Jharkhand are other minor producers of manganese.
Non-Ferrous Minerals: India is poorly with non-ferrous metallic minerals except bauxite.
Bauxite: Bauxite is the ore which is used in manufacturing of aluminum. Bauxite is found mainly in tertiary deposits and is associated with laterite rocks occurring extensively either on the plateau or hill ranges of peninsular India and also in the coastal tracts of the country.
Orissa happens to be the largest producer of Bauxite. Kalahandi and Sambalpur are the leading producers. The other two areas which have been increasing their production are Bolangir and Koraput. The patlands of Jharkhand in Lohardaga have rich deposits. Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra are other major producers. Bhavnagar, Jamnagar in Gujarat have the major deposits. Chhattisgarh has bauxite deposits In Amarkantak plateau while Katni-Jabalpur area and Balaghat in M.P. have important deposits of bauxite. Kolaba, Thane, Ratnagiri, Satara, Pune and Kolhapur in Maharashtra are important producers. Tamil Nadu. Karnataka and Goa are minor producers of bauxite.
Copper: Copper is an indispensable metal in the electrical industry for making wires, electric motors, transformers and generators. It is allowable. Malleable and ductile. It is also mixed with gold to provide strength to jewellery.
The Copper deposits mainly occur in Singhbhum district in Jharkhand, Balaghat district in Madhya Pradesh and Jhunjhunu and Alwar districts in Rajasthan.
Minor producers of Copper are Agnigundala in Guntur District (Andhra Pradesh), Chitradurg and hasan districts (Karnataka) and South Arcot district (Tamil Nadu).
Non-metallic Minerals: Among the non-metallic minerals produced in India, mica is the important one. The other minerals extracted for local consumption are limestone, dolomite and phosphate.
Mica: Mica is mainly used in the electrical and electronic industries. It can be split into very thin sheets which are tough and flexible. Mica in India is produced in Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan followed by Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh. In Jharkhand high quality mica is obtained in a belt extending over a distance of about 150 km, in length and about 22 km, in width in lower Hazaribagh plateau. In Andhra Pradesh. Nellore district produces the best quality mica. In Rajasthan mica belt extends for about 320 kms from Jaipur to Bhilwara and around Udaipur. Mica deposits also occur in Mysore and Hassan districts of Karnataka, Coimbatore. Tiruchirapalli, Madurai and Kanniyakumari in Tamil Nadu, Alleppey in Kerala, Ratnagiri in Maharashtra, Purulia and Bankura in West Bengal.
Energy Resources: Mineral fuels are essential for generation of power, required by agriculture, industry, transport and other
sectors of the economy. Mineral fuels like coal, petroleum and natural gas (known as fossil fuels). nuclear energy minerals, are the conventional sources of energy. These conventional sources are exhaustible resources.
Coal: Coal is a one of the important minerals which is mainly used in the generation of thermal power and smelting of iron ore, Coal occurs in rock sequences mainly of two geological ages, namely Gondwana and tertiary deposits.
Lignite is a low grade brown coal, which is soft with high moisture content. The principal lignite reserves are in Neyveli in Tamil Nadu and are used for generation of electricity. Coal that has been buried deep and subjected to increased temperatures is bituminous coal. It is the most popular coal in commercial use. Metallurgical coal is high grade bituminous coal which has a special value for smelting iron in blast furnaces.
Anthracite is the highest quality hard coal. About 80 per cent of the coal deposits in India is of bituminous type and is of non-coking grade. The most important Gondwana coal fields of India are located in Damodar Valley,
They lie in Jharkhand-Bengal coal belt and the important coal fields in this region are Raniganj, Jharia, Bokaro, Giridih, Karanpura.
Jharia is the largest coal field followed by Raniganj. The other river valleys associated with coal are Godavari, Mahanadi and Sone. The most important coal mining centres are Singrauli in Madhya Pradesh (part of Singrauli coal field lies in Uttar Pradesh), Korba in Chhattisgarh, Talcher and Rampur in Orissa, Chanda-Wardha, Kamptee and Bander in Maharashtra and Singareni and Pandur in Andhra Pradesh.
Tertiary coals occur in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya and Nagaland. It is extracted from Darangiri, Cherrapunji, Mewlong and Langrin (Meghalaya); Makum, Jaipur and Nazira in upper Assam, Namchik-Namphuk (Arunachal Pradesh) and Kalakot (Jammu and Kashmir). Besides, the brown coal or lignite occur in the coastal areas of Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Gujarat and Jammu and Kashmir.
Petroleum: Crude petroleum consists of hydrocarbons of liquid and gaseous states varying in chemical composition, colour and specific gravity. It is an essential source of energy for all internal combustion engines in automobiles, railways and aircraft. Its numerous by-products are processed in petrochemical industries such as fertilizer, synthetic fiber, medicines. Vaseline, lubricants, wax, soap and cosmetics.
Most of the petroleum occurrences in India are associated with anticlines and fault traps in the rock formations of the tertiary age. In regions of folding, anticlines or domes, it occurs where oil is trapped in the crest of the up fold. The oil bearing layer is a porous limestone or sandstone through which oil may flow. The oil is prevented from rising or sinking by intervening non-porous layers.
Petroleum is also found in fault traps between porous and non-porous rocks. Gas, being lighter usually occurs above the oil.
About 63 per cent of India’s petroleum production is from Mumbai High, 18 per cent from Gujarat and 16 per cent from Assam.
Crude petroleum occurs in sedimentary rocks of the tertiary period. OH exploration and production was systematically taken up after the Oil and Natural Gas Commission was set up in 1956. Till then, the Digboi in Assam was the only oil producing region but the scenario has changed after 1956. In recent years, new oil deposits have been found at the extreme western and eastern parts of the country. In Assam, Digboi, Naharkatiya and Moran are important oil producing areas. The major oil fields of Gujarat are Ankaleshwar, Katol, Mehsana, Nawagam, Kosamba and Lunej. Mumbai High which lies 160 km off Mumbai was discovered in 1973 and production commenced in 1976. Oil and natural gas have been found in exploratory wells In Krishna-Godavari and Kaveri basin on the east coast.
Oil extracted from the well is crude oil and contains many impurities. It cannot be used directly. It needs to be refined. There are two types of refineries in India: (a) field based and (b) market based. Digboi is an example of field based and Barauni is an example of market based refinery.
Natural Gas: The Gas Authority of India Limited was set up in 1984 as a public sector undertaking to transport and market natural gas. It is obtained along with oil in all the oil fields but exclusive reserves have been located along the eastern coast as well as (Tamil Nadu, Orissa and Andhra Pradesh), Tripura, Rajasthan and off-shore wells in Gujarat and Maharashtra.
Nuclear Energy Resources: Nuclear energy as a viable source in recent times. Important minerals used for the generation of nuclear energy are uranium and thorium. Uranium deposits occur In the Dharwar rocks. Geographically, uranium ores are known to occur in several locations along the Singbhum Copper belt. It is also found In Udaipur, Alwar and Jhunjhunu districts of Rajasthan, Durg district of Chhattisgarh, Bhandara district of Maharashtra and Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh. Thorium is mainly obtained from monazite and limonite in the beach sands along the coast of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. World's richest monazite deposits occur in Palakkad and Kollam districts of Kerala, near Vishakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh and Mahanadi river delta in Orissa.
Atomic Energy Commission was established in 1948, progress could be made only after the establishment of the Atomic Energy Institute at Trombay in 1954 which was renamed as the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre in 1967. The important nuclear power projects are Tarapur (Maharashtra), Rawatbhata near Kota (Rajasthan), Kalpakkam (Tamil Nadu), Narora (Uttar Pradesh), Kaiga (Karnataka) and Kakarapara (Gujarat).
Non-Conventional Energy Sources: Fossil fuel sources, such as coal, petroleum, natural gas and nuclear energy use exhaustible raw materials. Sustainable energy resources are only the renewable energy sources like solar, wind, hydro-geothermal and biomass. These energy sources are more equitably distributed and environmental friendly. The non-conventional energy sources will provide more sustained, eco-friendly cheaper energy after the initial cost is taken care of.
Solar Energy: Sun rays tapped in photovoltaic cells can be converted into energy, known as solar energy. The two effective processes considered to be very effective to tap solar energy are photovoltaic and solar thermal technology. Solar thermal technology has some relative advantages over all other non-renewable energy sources. It is cost competitive, environment friendly and easy to construct. Solar energy is 7 per cent more effective than coal or oil based plants and 10 per cent more effective than nuclear plants. It is generally used more in appliances like heaters, crop dryers, cookers, etc. The western part of India has greater potential for the development of solar energy in Gujarat and Rajasthan.
Wind Energy: Wind energy is absolutely pollution free, inexhaustible source of energy. The mechanism of energy conversion from blowing wind is simple. The kinetic energy of wind, through turbines is converted into electrical energy. The permanent wind systems such the trade winds, westerly’s and seasonal wind like monsoon have been used as source of energy. Besides these, local winds, land and sea breezes can also be used to produce electricity.
India, already has started generating wind energy. It has an ambitious programme to install 250 wind-driven turbines with a total capacity of 45 megawatts, spread over.12 suitable locations, specially in coastal areas. According to the estimation by Ministry of Power, India will be able to produce 3,000 megawatts of electric from this source. The Ministry of non- conventional sources of energy is developing wind energy in India to lessen the burden of oil import bill. The country’s potential of wind power generation exceeds 50,000 megawatts; of which one fourth can be easily harnessed. In Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Karnataka, favourable conditions for wind energy exist. Wind power plant at Lamba in Gujarat in Kachchh is the largest in Asia. Another, wind power plant is located at Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu.
Tidal and Wave Energy: Ocean currents are the store-house of infinite energy. Since the beginning of seventeenth and eighteenth century, persistent efforts were made to create a more efficient energy system from the ceaseless tidal waves and ocean current.
Large tidal waves are known to occur along the west coast of India. Hence, India has great potential for the development of tidal energy along the coasts but so far these have not yet been utilized.
In India, the Gulf of Kuchchh, provides ideal conditions for utilizing tidal energy. A 900 mw tidal energy power plant is set up here by the National Hydropower Corporation.
Geothermal Energy: When the magma from the interior of earth, comes out on the surface, tremendous heat is released. This heat energy can successfully be tapped and converted to electrical energy. Apart from this, the hot water that gushes out through the gyser well is also used in the generation of thermal energy. It is popularly known as geothermal energy. This energy is now considered to be one of the key energy sources which can be developed as an alternate source. The hot springs and geysers are being used since medieval period.
The first successful (1890) attempt to tap the underground heat was made in the city of Boise, Idaho (U.S.A.), where a hot water pipe network was built to give heat to the surrounding buildings. This plant is still working.
Bio-energy: Bio-energy refers to energy derived from biological products which includes agricultural residues, municipal, industrial and other wastes.
Establishment of iron and steel industry in Bhilai and Rourkela were based on decision to develop backward tribal areas of the country. At present, government of India provides lots of incentives to industries locating in backward area.
The iron and steel industry is basic to the industrial development of any country. The cotton textile Industry is one of our traditional industries. The sugar Industry is based on local raw materials which prospered even in the British period.
The Iron and Steel Industry
The development of the iron and steel industry opened the doors to rapid industrial development in India. Almost all sectors of the Indian industry depend heavily on the iron and steel industry for their basic infrastructure.
The other raw materials besides Iron ore and coking coal, essential for iron and steel industry are limestone, dolomite, manganese and fire clay. All these raw materials are gross (weight losing), therefore, the best location for the iron and steel plants is near the source of raw materials. In India, there is a crescent shaped region comprising parts of Chhattisgarh, Northern Orissa, Jharkhand and western West Bengal, which is extremely rich in high grade iron ore, good quality coking coal and other supplementing raw materials.
The Indian iron and steel industry consists of large integrated steel plants as well as mini steel mills. It also includes secondary producers, rolling mills and ancillary industries.
Integrated Steel Plants
TISCO: The Tata Iron and Steel plant lies very close to the Mumbai-Kolkata railway line and about 240 km away from Kolkata, which is the nearest port for the export of steel. The rivers Subarnarekha and Kharkai provide water to the plant. The iron ore for the plant is obtained from Noamundi and Badam Pahar and coal is brought from Joda mines in Orissa. Coking coal comes from Jharia and West Bokaro coalfields.
IISCO: The Indian Iron and Steel Company (IISCO) set up its first factory at Hirapur and later on another at Kulti. In 1937, the Steel corporation of Bengal was constituted in association with IISCO and set up another iron and steel producing unit at Burhanpur (West Bengal). All the three plants under IISCO are located very close to Damodar valley coal fields (Raniganj), Jharia, and Ramgarh. Iron ore comes from Singhbhum in Jharkhand. Water is obtained from the Barakar River, a tributary of the Damodar. All the plants are located along the Kolkata-Asansol railway line. Unfortunately, steel production from IISCO fell considerably in 1972-73 and the plants were taken over by the government.
Visvesvaraiya Iron and Steel Works Ltd. (VISL)
The third integrated steel plant, the Visvesvaraiya Iron and Steel Works, initially called the Mysore Iron and Steel Works, is
located close to an iron ore producing area of Kemangundi in the Bababudan hills. Limestone and manganese are also locally available. But this region has no coal.
At the beginning, charcoal obtained by burning wood from nearby forests was used as fuel till 1951. Afterwards, electric furnaces were installed which use hydroelectricity from the Jog Falls-hydel power project. The Bhadravati river supplies water to the plant. This plant produces specialized steels and alloys.
After independence, during the Second Five Year Plan (1956-61), three new integrated steel plants were set up with foreign collaboration: Rourkela in Orissa, Bhilai in Chhattisgarh and Durgapur in West Bengal. These were public sector plants under Hindustan Steel Limited (HSL). In 1973, the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) was created to manage these plants.
Rourkela Steel Plant
The Rourkela Steel plant was set up in 1959 in the Sundargarh district of Orissa in collaboration with Germany. The plant was located on the basis of proximity to raw materials, thus, minimizing the cost of transporting weight losing raw material. This plant has a unique locational advantage, as it receives coal from Jharia (Jharkhand) and iron ore from Sundargarh and Kendujhar. The Hirakund project supplies power for the electric furnaces and water is obtained from the Koel and Sankh rivers.
Bhilai Steel Plant
The Bhilai Steel Plant was established with Russian collaboration in Durg District of Chhattisgarh and started production in 1959. The iron ore comes from Dalli-Rajhara mine, coal comes from Korba and Kargali coal fields. The water comes from the Tanduladam and the power from the Korba Thermal Power Station. This plant also lies on the Kolkata-Mumbai railway route. The bulk of the steel produced goes to the Hindustan Shipyard at Vishakhapatnam.
Durgapur Steel Plant: Durgapur Steel Plant, in West Bengal, was set up in collaboration with the government of the United Kingdom and started production in 1962. This plant lies in Raniganj and Jharia coal belt and gets iron ore from Noamundi. Durgapur lies on the main Kolkata-Delhi railway route. Hydel power and water is obtained from the Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC).
Bokaro Steel Plant: This steel plant was set up in 1964 at Bokaro with Russian collaboration. This plant was set up on the principle of transportation cost minimization by creating Bokaro-Rourkela combine. It receives iron ore from the Rourkela region and the wagons on return take coal to Rourkela. Other raw materials come to Bokaro from within a radius of about 350 km. Water and Hydel power is supplied by the Damodar Valley Corporation.
Other Steel Plants: New steel plants which were set up in the Fourth Plan period are away from the main raw material sources. All the three plants are located in South India. The Vizag Steel Plant, in Vishakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh is the first port based plant which started operating in 1992. Its port location is of advantage.
The Vijaynagar Steel Plant at Hospet in Karnataka was developed using indigenous technology. This uses local iron ore and limestone. The Salem Steel Plant in Tamil Nadu was commissioned in 1982.
Apart from these major steel plants, there are more than 206 units located in different parts of country. Most of these use scrap iron as their main raw material, and process it in electric furnaces.
The Cotton Textile Industry
In 1854, the first modern cotton mill was established in Mumbai. This city had several advantages as a cotton textile manufacturing centre. It was very close to the cotton producing areas of Gujarat and Maharashtra. Raw cotton used to be brought to Mumbai port to be transported to England. Therefore, cotton was available in Mumbai city itself. Moreover, Mumbai even then was the financial centre and the capital needed to start an industry was available there. As a large town, providing employment opportunities attracted labour in large numbers. Hence, cheap and abundant labour too was available locally. The machinery required for a cotton textile mill could be directly imported from England. Subsequently, two more mills, the Shahpur Mill and the Calico Mill were established in Ahmedabad. By 1947, the number of mills in India went up to 423 but the scenario changed after partition, and this industry suffered a major recession. This was due to the fact that the most of the good quality cotton growing areas had gone to West Pakistan and India was left with 409 mills and only 29 per cent of the cotton producing area.
After Independence, this industry gradually recovered and eventually flourished. In 1998, India had 1782 mills; of which, 192 mills were in the public sector and 151 mills in the cooperative sector The largest number, that is, 1,439 mills were in the private sector.
The cotton textile industry in India can be broadly divided into two sectors, the organized sector and the decentralized sector. The decentralized sector includes cloth produced in handlooms (including Khadi) and power looms. The production of the organized sector has drastically fallen from 81 per cent in the mid-twentieth century to only about 6 per cent in 2000. At present, the power looms on the decentralized sector produce more than 59 per cent and the hand loom sector produces about 19 per cent of all cotton cloth produced in the country,
Cotton is a “pure” raw material which does not lose weight in the manufacturing process, so other factors, like, power to drive the looms, labour, capital or market may determine the location of the industry. At present the trend is to locate the industry at or close to markets, as it is the market that decides what kind of cloth is to be produced. Also the market for the finished produces is extremely variable, therefore, it becomes important to locate the mills close to the market.
After the first mills were set up in Mumbai and Ahmedabad in the second half of the nineteenth century, the cotton textile industry expanded very rapidly. The number of units increased dramatically. The Swadeshi movement gave a major impetus to the industry as there was a call for boycotting all British made goods in favour of Indian goods.
After 1921, with the development of the railway network other cotton textile centres expanded rapidly. In southern India, mills were set up at Coimbatore, Madurai and Bangalore. In central India, Nagpur, Indore, Solapur and Vadodra became cotton textile centres. Cotton textile mills were set up at Kanpur based on local investment. Mills were also set up at Kolkata due to its port facilities. The development of hydro-electricity also favoured the location of the cotton textile mills away from the cotton producing areas. The rapid development of this industry in Tamil Nadu is the result of the abundant availability of hydel power for the mills. Lower labour costs at centres like Ujjain, Bharuch, Agra, Hathras, Coimbatore and Tirunelveli also caused industries to be located away from cotton producing areas.
Thus, the cotton textile industry is located in almost every state in India, where one or more of the locational factors have been favourable. The importance of raw materials has given way to market or to a cheaper local labour force or it may be the availability of power.
Presently, the major centres of the cotton textile industry are Ahmedabad, Bhiwandi, Solapur, Kolhapur, Nagpur, Indore and Ujjain. All these centres are the traditional centres and are located close to the cotton producing regions. Maharashtra, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu are the leading cotton producing states. West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, and Punjab are the other important cotton textile producers.
Tamil Nadu has the largest number of mills and most of them produce yarn rather than cloth. Coimbatore has emerged as the most important centre with nearly half the mills located there. Chennai, Madurai, Tirunelveli, Tuticorin, Thanjavur, Ramanathapuram and Salem are the other important centres. In Karnataka, the cotton textile industry has developed in the cotton producing areas in the north-eastern part of the state. Davangere, Hubli, Bellary, Mysore and Bangalore are important centres. In Andhra Pradesh, the cotton textile industry is located in the cotton producing Telengana region, where most of the mills are spinning mills producing yarn. The important centres are Hyderabad, Secundrabad, Warangal and Guntur.
In Uttar Pradesh, Kanpur is the largest centre. Some of the other important centres are Modinagar, Hathras, Saharanpur, Agra and Lucknow. In West Bengal, the cotton mills are located in the Hugli region. Howrah, Serampur, Kolkata and Shyamnagar are the important centres. Production of cotton cloth increased almost five times from 1950-51 to 1999-2000.
Cotton textile has been facing tough competition from synthetic cloth.
You need to login to perform this action.
You will be redirected in 3 sec