In India, the woolen industry was started on an organized basis with the setting up of the first woolen mill at Dhariwal (in the Gurdaspur District) in 1876. The Punjab was, thus, the first to install a mill for the manufacture of woollen fabrics. Moreover, woolen goods, like shawls and carpets, have been produced in Amritsar since 1833 during the reign of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. In 1919, the first power-loom was installed in Amritsar for the production of woolens and afterwards other entrepreneurs followed suit. But up to 1947, the growth was rather slow. The real expansion of the industry started after the independence, when 3000 power-looms for manufacturing woolens were installed in the country. Out of these, about 1400 power-looms were installed in the Amritsar District, most of which (about 90 per cent) were concentrated in the Amritsar city. In 1967-68 there were 1205 power-looms in the district, and these employed 11,100 persons and produced goods worth 38 lakhs of rupees.
Most of the raw material of this industry is the imported greasy wool. Before 1957, this item was under O.G.L. (Open General Licence) and thus, the industry was working satisfactorily. But owing to the shortage of foreign exchange imports were reduced, as a result of which there was lot of idle installed capacity in 1967.
Woollen Carpets.__ Carpet-weaving has been carried on in Amritsar since long. After the annexation of the Punjab in 1849 by the British, the export trade in carpets expanded. Carpets of very fine quality and beautiful designs were produced and exported to various countries. The designs were largely made by Kashmiris and were based on the shawl-pattern motives. A woolen mill for the manufacture of carpet yarns was established in 1924. The carpet production increased in quantity and improved in quality. Before the partition, carpets were also hand-woven by Muslim weavers who were paid according to the number of stitches woven into the carpet. At present, there is only one unit producing carpets in the district. It is engaged in the production of hand-knitted wollen carpets of different fineness with indigenous and imported woolen yarns. There are about 100 handlooms run in the villages of the district. The products are mainly exported to France, Germany, Canada and Sweeden.
The industry is facing a crisis because of the shortage of skilled labour.
Shawls.__ This is an old industry of the district. For many years, Amritsar was famous for the manufacture of very fine shawls which were made from the finest wool (pasham). The origin of the shawl industry dates back to 1833, when a large number of famine-stricken Kashmiri weavers came and settled in Amritsar. They brought with them instruments and techniques which greatly helped the local shawl industry to develop on sound lines. They also cleaned the shawls brought from Kashmir for export to other parts of India. Initially, about 300 looms worked in Amritsar with an annual production of Rs.30000. The industry appears to have spread rapidly during the reign of Maharaja Ranjit Singh (1799-1839) owing to a large demand for shawls from various parts of the country. Amritsar shawls were famous for their quality, fineness and embroidery not only in India but also in foreign countries.
The pashmina-shawl industry was virtually destroyed owing to (i) the Franco-Prussian War (1870-71) ,(ii) the adulteration of wool with imported inferior stuff in the latter half of the ninteenth century, (iii) the import of woolen clothes from foreign countries, (iv) the advent of machinery and powerlooms.(v) the second afgan war (1878-79) and (vi) the World War I (1914-18). The immediate loss to the Amritsar pashmina manufacturers, as a result of the Franco-Prussian War (1870-71), was substantial and many weavers were thrown out of employment. In the late forties of the twentieth century, owing to a reduction in the tariff duty, the merchants were able t import yarn at a smaller cost, with which they could prepare shawls cheaper than those supplied by France and Germany. Shawls were also imported from Germany. These were embroidered at Amritsar mostly by the Kashmiri Muslims and then sold as a kind of Amritsar’s inferior shawls.
With the partition of the country in 1947 the industry suffered a set-back. In 1951, owing to the Korean War, America stopped her imports from China, which had been her main supplier of pashmina, and turned, instead, to Kashmir. A few Kashmiri exporters came to Amritsar to collect the largest assured supplies and this encouraged the Amrtisar merchants. In subsequent years, the Amritsar merchants, by virtue of their initiative and enterprise, captured a significant portion of the American market. This led to an increase in exports from the Punjab and to the discovery of pulled pashmina5
Blankets:- Blankets are also made in Amritsar, both in the large-scale sectors and small-scale sectors. Almost all the woolen mills in the large-scale sector manufacture blankets.
The raw materials used are woolen and shoddy yarn. In the small-scale sector, mostly shoddy yarn is used. The blankets have been manufactured in Amritsar since the time of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, but the quality and method of production have been changing. The Amritsar-made blankets are much popular and are marketed throughout India.
Having discussed the various production wings of the woolen industry, its overall picture is that in 1967-68, there were 15 units in the large scale-sector, which produced goods worth 722 lakhs of rupees and provided employment to 3,599 workers. There were 310 units in the small-scale sector which produced goods worth 500 lakhs of rupees and provided employment to 12,000 workers. The woolen goods of Amritsar meets as much as 65 per cent of the demand of woolen fabrics of the country. The main products are worsted, tweeds, ladies’ coating, shawls, blankets, melton, cotswool, blazer, carpets, etc.
This is also an old industry of the district. Before Ranjit Singh’s time and even after that, raw silk was imported from Bukhara, Yarkand, Kashmir and China. It was cleaned, sorted, carded and dyed in Amritsar and then exported to different places in India. Silk yarn and staple fibre yarn were imported from China, Japan and Italy, whereas cotton yarn came from Bombay and Central Provisions. The main items of production were daryai and silken handkerchiefs, turbans, lungies, ghagras, sarees and dopattas. Shirting and suiting cloth was also produced. By 1883, the average annual value of imported silk was also produced. By 1883, the average annual value of imported silk was Rs.3,00,000. By 1983, there were 2,000 looms in operation, with an output worth Rs.2,00,000. Like other industries, the World Wars I and II gave a fillip to this industry also. With the passage of time, the nature of products changed. Artificial silk took the place of pure silk and then rayon further replaced it.
In Amritsar, this industry is mostly in the small-scale sector, apart from two or three units in the large-scale sector. These are composite units, producing both woolen and silk products. The main items produced are georgette, taffeta, shanoon, etc.
There is one unit in the large-scale sector established before the partition of 1947. It is mainly engaged in the spinning of cotton yarn, though previously it also used to weave. The product, i.e. the spun cotton yarn, meets the local demand. The production was 1,92,323 kg in 1967-68. About 28.8 lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the large-scale sector.
On the weaving side, there are a number of small-scale units producing goods like khaddar( coarse cloth ), bed sheets, bukram and some other varieties of coarse cloth. The main raw materials for the products are raw cotton and cotton yarn.
The printing of textiles is another important aspect of the textile industry in the district. A number of units are engaged in the machine-printing, screenprinting and block printing of textiles.
(2) Textile-Finishing Industry.__ The textile-finishing industry generally meets the demand of the units in the small scale sector, as the larger units in the textile industry have their own finishing plants and dyeing plants.
There is one unit in the lage-scale sector engaged in the dyeing and finishing of textiles. In 1967-68, it carried out jobs worth 34 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 319 workers. About 27.4 lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the industry. The basic raw materials are dyes, chemicals, auxiliaries, starches, steam-coal, etc.
(3) Embroidery Industry.__ The machine embroidery was introduced into the country for the first time in 1934 when the first unit was established at Amritsar by an Italian. Another unit came into being there in 1941. The raw materials required are mercerized cloth, art silk yarn and cotton yarn. These two units in the large-scale sector produced goods worth 6305 lakhs of repees and gave employment to 230 workers during 1967-68. About 17.3 lakhs of rupees are said t have been invested in these units.
Embroidery work is also carried on in the small scale sector.
(4) Roller Flour –Mills.__ There are two roller flour-mills in the district in the large-scale sector. Their main products are maida, rawa, dal, poultry feed, etc.One of these mills was started in 1946 and the other in 1956. These produced goods worth 350 lakhs of rupees in 1967-68 and gave employment to 153 persons.
(5) Oil-Mills.__ This industry came into being in the district in 1924 or thereabout. Three units in the large-scale sector are engaged in it. They produce hydrogenated oil. Rice-bran, solvent oils, mahua oil and, as by-products, de-oiled rice-bran, de-oiled cakes, ect. The essential raw materials required for these are: rice-bran, neem, cotton-seed, groundnut, mahua, acids, salts, etc. The industry produced goods worth703 lakhs of rupees, with an investment of 124 lakhs and gave employment to 342 persons in 1967-68.
(6) Milk Plant.__ Under the Punjab Dairy Development Corporation Ltd. Chandigarh, the Composite Milk Plant at Verka is the second biggest project of its type in the country, built at a cost of 60 lakhs of rupees with American aid. The plant started functioning form December 1, 1962. Its machinery was supplied by America as a gift to the country. The dairy consists of a modern plant for the pasteurization of milk and its bottling at the rate of 6,000 bottles per hour. The manufacturing section produces about 5,000 kilogrammes of butter and ghee and 6,200 kilogrammes of milk powder per day. The factory has five storage tanks, each with a capacity of 13,500 litres. Besides, it produces items like pasteurized fluid milk, whole-milk powder, powder, skimmilk powder, ghee, butter, ice-cream powder, milk shake powder, lassi powder and sweetened flavoured sterilized milk. The yearly turnover of the plant is said to be about 2 crores of rupees.
The milk required for the project is obtained form the nearby villages and is collected at the main factory and also through three milk collection-cum chilling centers established at Mahta, Patti, and Fatehgarh Churian (Gurdaspur District). These centers are equipped for reception, testing, chilling and storage of milk. The milk, thus, collected is carried to the main factory at Verka. The various sections of the dairy are : the raw milk receiving section, the washing of emptycans section, the pasteurizing section, the storage section, the bottle-washing and bottle filling section, the cold store, and the butter section.
In 1967-68,the total production of the plant was worth Rs.86,48,703 and it gave employment to 278 workers.
(7) Wood-Screw and Machine-Screw Industry.__ There are about 42 units of this industry in the small-scale sector. One unit in the large-scale sector is engagd in the manufacture of wood and machine-screws, panel pins, wire nails, etc. In the small-scale sector, mostly wood screws are manufactured, but in the large-scalesector, both wood and machine-screws are produced. The basic raw materials required for this industry are mild-steel wire, wire rods and brass wire. The raw material is indigenous and is available in the open market. About 35 lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the industry. It produced goods worth 55 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 230 workers in 1967-68 in the small-scale sector. It produced goods worth 22.86 lakhs of rupees in the large-scale sector and gave employment to 172 persons.
(8) Chemical Industry.__ This is an old industry of the district. Amritsar is probably the only district in the State where chemicals are manufactured. The first chemical factory, viz. Messrs Shambhu Nath and Sons Ltd., was established as early as 1898. By 1929, two other factories were established. The World War II, too, gave an impetus to this industry and the number of units rose to 9 by 1947. This number rose further to 15 in 1954-55. In 1967-68 there were14 units engaged in the manufacture of chemicals in the small scale sector and 2 in the large scale sector.
The main items produced by this industry are inorganic acids, medicines, table salt, mixed fertilizers, turpentine, alcohols, dyes, paints, varnishes, etc. The basic raw materials required by the industry are Sambhar salt, sodium nitrate, sodium ash, sulphur, nickel powder, acids, solvents,etc. The products of this industry are not only marketed throughout the country but are also sent abroad. The large scale units in the industry gave employment to 293 workers and produced goods worth 87.4 lakhs of rupees during 1966-67. The total investment in the large-scale units was to the tune of 3503 lakhs of rupees. The small scale units had an annual out put of 12.6 lakhs of rupees during 1967-68 and gave employment to 84 workers.
(9) Distilling Industry.__ This is one of the oldest industries of the district. Established in 1898, the distillery is situated at Khasa on the Grand Trunk Road. There have been changes in its nomenclature from time to time. In 1898, it was named ‘The Punjab Distilling Company’ but, in 1948, its name was changed to ‘Punjab Distillery’
The main article produced by the industry are country spirit, liquor and carbon dioxide. The main raw materials are molasses and coal.
The industry produced goods worth 16.71 lakhs of rupees during 1967-68 and gave employment to 258 workers. About 26.61 lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the industry.
(10) Northern Railway Locomotive Workshop, Amritsar.__ This workshop was set up towards the beginning of the present century.
(ii) Small-Scale Industries
The small scale industries play a vital role in the economic development of the country. Though the large scale industries are sine qua non for the economic development , yet the small scale industries are equally indispensable. The various small scale industries existing in the district are detailed below:
(11) Machine Tool Industry.__ This industry produces a large number of items,the main among which are dog chucks, drilling machines, fly presses, printing machines cutting machines and paper-stitching- machines, etc. In 1967-68, there were 215 units engaged in the industry in the district with and annual outputof 1.75 lakhs of rupees and provided employment to 2,085 workers. A detailed description of these industries is given below:
The industry is said to have been established some three decades back. There were 6 units engaged in the manufacture of textile machinery in 1967-68. Though all these units are in the small scale sector, yet 4 of them are in the relatively large scale sector. The raw materials required are steel bearings, stainless steel, etc. The bodies of machines are mostly cast in the local foundries, but some of the units have their own foundries. Apart from meeting the local demand, the industry supplies its products to other parts of the country. The industry produced goods worth 70 lakhs of rupees in 1967-68. About 20 lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in it.
This industry is said to have been established in 1940. In 1967-68, ther were about 60 units in the district, producing printing presses and paper cutting machines. All the units are in the small scale sector. The district holds monopoly in the manufacture of printing presses not only in the Punjab but in the country as a whole. The bodies of the machines are procured from the local foundries. Some of the bigger units have their won foundries. The main raw materials used are casts and steel,most of which are indigenous. About 50 lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the industry which produced goods worth 100 lakhs of rupees in 1967-68. The products are supplied mostly to Bombay, Madras and Calcutta.
Kohlus( Indigenous Oil-Presses)
In the Punjab, kohlus are mostly manufactured at Amritsar and are marketed throughout the country. The industry came into being in the districjt in 1934. In 1967-68 there were in Amritsar 5 units engaged in the production of kohlus. The raw materials used are pig-iron, scrap steel, etc. The bodies of kohlus are either moulded by the units themselves or are produced by the local foundries. In 1967-68, the industry produced good worth 25 lakhs of rupees and provided employment to about 80 persons. The total investment in this industry is said to be 12 lakhs of rupees.
(12) Agricultural Implements.__ In 1967-68, there were 34 small scale units in the district engaged in the manufacture of agricultural implements, like chaff-cutters, tokas and iron ploughs. The industry provided employment to 348 persons and produced goods worth 29 lakhs of rupees in 1967-68. It mostly caters to the demand of the local market.
(13) Cycles and Cycle Parts.__ This industry was started in Amristar during the World War II. The main items manufactured were carriers, stands, pedals, B.B. axles, tricycles, etc. Presently, the industry is manufacturing carriers, saddles, chain covers, cycle pumps, etc. The main items of raw material and components required by the industry are free-cutting steel of various types, steel pipes, M.S. sheets ( 10 to 24 gauges), M.S. strips, M.S. rounds and bars, M.S. wires, seamless tubes, etc. The other ancillary items include tyres, brake rubber, pedal rubber, oils; component parts, e.g.cahins, rims, B.B.shells, steel balls; consumable stores, such as nickel anodes, copper electro-plating and mopping materials, coal, paints, etc.
In 1967-68, there were 26 units engaged in this industry in the district. These units produced goods worth 9022 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 180 persons.
(14) Sewing-Machines and Parts.__ The industry came into existence after the partition. In 1954-55, there was only one unit, producing sewing machine parts in the district. With the emergence of Ludhiana as the center for the production of sewing-machine and sewing-machine parts, only assembling is mainly done in Amritsar. In 1967-68, there were 4 units engaged in the production of sewing-machine in the district. These units produced goods worth 1.96 lakhs of rupees and provided employment to 17 workers.
(15) Steel Re-rolling.__ The industry came into existence in the district in 1935. It meets the demand of the district and also of some other parts of the State. The main items of production are round bars, square bars, flat bars, strip angles, etc. Those products are used in cycle, automobile and building industries. The basic raw materials for this industry are scrap-iron, billets and steam coal.
In 1967-68, three units ( one registered and two unregistered) were engaged in the industry in the district. It provided employment for 260 workers and produced goods worth 47.4 lakhs of rupees. About 100 lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the industry.
(16) Non-Ferrous Metals Industry (Utensils).__ This is an old and important industry of the district. Its important centres are Amritsar and Jandiala Guru. At Amritsar there is one big unit engaged in utensil manufacturing. Besides, there are small units at Jandiala Guru and Amritsar. The basic requirements of the industry are brass, aluminium and scrap.
The industry also produces stainless-steel utensils which are quite popular these days. Brass-casting is done both as a utilitarian industry and for ornamentation. Thalis are made of copper and are enriched with concentric barnds of ornament, cast through tin into the copper ground. Metal work as a craft is seen in the inlay work which is done on copper and brass with floral and other designs. The work is carried on with machines and hand-tools. The utensils manufactured by the industry are in great demand in the district and also in other parts of the country.
There were 95 units engaged in the industry in the district in 1967-68. These units gave employment to 260 persons and produced goods worth 13.10 lakhs of rupees. During the last few years, the production of the industry has been adversely affected by the inadequate supply of non-ferrous metals.
(17) Nuts and Bolts.__ The industry is said to have been established in the district in the early sixties. The main items manufactured are nuts, bolts, rivers, dog spikes, etc. The raw materials used are iron, mild steel( round ), mild steel ( square), etc.indigenous and imported. The products are marketed throughout India. In 1967-68 there were 4 units engaged in the industry in the district. These units produced goods worth 2.15 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 30 workers. About 4.5 lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the industry.
(18) Electic Motors.__ In 1967-68, there were 9 units producing electric motors in the district. These units gave employment to 39 workers and produced 1,635 electic motors, worth 6 lakhs of rupees. The raw materials used are stampings (lamination), bearings,enameled copper wire, mild steel, etc.
(19) Electric Fans.__ This industry came into existence in the district before 1947. At the time of the partition, there were 17 units, but afterwards their number came down.
Amritsar is the only center in the district for the production of electric fans. The industry produces ceiling fans, table fans, cabin fans and pedestal fans. The main raw materials used are stampings, enameled copper wire, condensers, ball bearings, silicon steel sheets, mild-steel sheets, etc.
In 1967-68, there were 5 units in the small-scale sector engaged in the production of eletric fans. They produced goods worth 5.95 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 67 workers. Two lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the industry.
(20) Glass Beads.__ In 1966-67, there were 21 units engaged in the manufacture of glass beads in the district which produced goods worth 2 lakhs of rupees. They gave employment to 112 workers.The goods are marketed throughout the country. The essential raw materials required for the industry are glass, blocks and crucibles,and chemicals, most of which are imported.
6V.N. Datta, Amritsar Past and Present, p.147
(21) Cotton- Ginning.__ In 1967-68, there were 27 units engaged in the cotton-ginning in the district. These units provided employment for 972 workers, and produced 11,00,000 bales of cotton which brought an income amounting to 77 lakhs of rupees.
(22) Hosiery Industry.__ The origin of the hosiery industry in the district dates back to 1930. Both cotton and woolen hosiery goods were manufactured in Amritsar. The industry flourished up to the World War II which gave it a fillip. But, with the partition of the country, it received a severe set back owing to the migration of skilled labour to Pakistan.
In 1967-68, there were 37 units producing cotton hosiery exclusively,viz. socks, under-vests, etc. These units produced goods worth 15.8 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 230 worker during 1967-68. Fifteen lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the industry. The basic raw material used by the industry is cotton yarn which is procured locally. The products are marketed throughout India. The industry is facing tough competition from the Ludhiana manufacturers.
(23) Thermometer Industry.__ The Industry was established at Amritsar in 1955 with the help of a Japanese firm . Apart from supplying the necessary machinery, the firm also offered the services of its technicians. The industry produced only clinical thermometer which are marketed though out the country. The principal raw material required are capillary tubes, mercury, plastic powder, petrol, etc. Previously, the capillary tubes were imported, but now these are manufactured and supplied by some Indian firms.
In 1967-68, there were 5 units engaged in the manufacture of clinical thermometers. The industry produced goods worth 5 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 100 workers. The goods are marketed through out India.
(24) Radios and Amplifiers.__ The industry was started at Amritsar in 1946. To begin with, only 5 units were engaged in it. One of these was at Tarn Taran. As a matter of fact, no important part of the radio is manufactured at Amritsar. Only assembling is done. The parts are either imported from abroad or are procured from others parts of the country
In 1967-68, there were 155 units engaged in assembling radios and amplifiers. These units produced goods worth 23.15 lakhs of rupees and offered employment to 392 workers.
(25) Food Products.__ In 1966-67, there were 105 units producing food products in the district. Their production was worth 32 lakhs of rupees and these gave employment to 435 persons.
The industry in the district may be divided into two categories, viz. the warian and paapar industry; and the jam and murabba industry.
Warian and Paapar Industry
This is the oldest industry of Amritsar. The city has a monolopy in th production of warian and paapar, which are popular throughout the country for their fine spicy taste. The industry also earns foreign exchange by exporting the products to the USA, the UK, Singapore, Afghanistan, etc.
In 1967-68, there were about 25 units producing paapar, warian and phulwaria, and these produced goods worth 20 lakhs of rupees. The raw materials required by this industry are pulses, spices and some other such items.
Pickle and Murabba Industry
This is also an old industry of the district. In 1967-68, there were about 15 units engaged in the production of pickles, preserved fruits (murabba), a raks (extracts obtained by distillation), etc. The oldest of these units is said to have been established in 1850. Of late, the industry has been started on scientific lines. The raw materials required are amla (Emblic myrobalan), harada (Chebulic myrobalan), mango, apple, carrot and sugar. The products are marketed throughout the country. The industry also earns foreign exchange by expoting the products t other countries. In1967-68, goods worth 15 lakhs of rupees were produced. Ten lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in this industry.
Both the above mentioned industries gave employment to 435 workers during 1967-68.
(26) Chemical Industry.__ The following four types of chemical industries are run in the district:
In 1967-68, there were 14 units manufacturing pharmaceuticals in the district. These units produced goods worth 12.67 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 84 persons.
Paints and Pigments
The first paints factory was established in 1930 at Amritsar which has ever since continued to be an important center of the industry. The essential raw materials used are chemicals, e.g. resin, zinc oxide, dye pigments, lithophone, titanium dioxide, carhon black and linseed oil. The principal products are white paint, enamel, cement colours, dry paints, yellow ochre red oxide, etc.
In 1967-68, there were 21 units engaged in the industry in the district. These units produced goods worth 32.38 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 183 workers. Twenty lakhs of rupees are said to have been invested in the industry.
Dyes and Colours
In 1967-68, there were 7 units engaged in the production of dyes and colours. These units produced goods worth 10.32 lakhs of rupees and provided employment for 54 workers.
This is another important industry of the district. It is said to have been established in the middle of the nineteenth century or thereabout. Its main centers are Amritsar and Tarn Taran. The industry manufactures washing and toilet soap which has a good market in and out side the district. The main raw materials required are mutton tallow, caustic soda, sodium silicate, soap stone, edible oils, non-edible oils, etc (both indigenous and imported). In 1967-68, there were 190 units engaged in the industry. These produced goods worth 70 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 1,340 workers.
(27) Lace (Gota-Weaving) Manufacture.__ This industry is carried on partly in homes and partly in small factories in the district. Gold and silver thread, woven along with silk yarn, is used by ladies for the borders of their dresses, especially for sarees and for table covers. Formerly, the weaving of imitation gota was popular. Owing to the changing habits of the people, the industry is now declining.
(28) Automobile Parts.__ This is a post-partition industry. It produces automobile parts, e.g. pistons, piston pins and rings, and steering-wheels. The basic raw materials used are aluminium alloy, alloy steel, etc. In 1967-68, there were 5 units engaged in the industry in the district. These units produced goods worth 37 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 260 workers. The total investment in the industry is said to have amounted to 15 lakhs of rupees.
(29) Rubber Goods.__ This is an important industry of the district and is mainly located at Amritsar, Jandiala Guru and Tarn Taran. The main items manufactured are pram and tricycle tyres, rubber grips, pedals, motor-cycle parts, corks, rubber heads, bicycle seats, chappals, radio parts, electric wire,etc. The essential raw materials used are synthetic rubber, pigments, carbon, raw rubber, reinforcing clays, petrol, etc. In 1967-68, 13 units were engaged in the industry. These produced goods worth 90.68 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 154 workers.
(30) Plastic Goods Industry.__ This is also a new industry in the district and was started after the partition. The main items manufactured are shuttle cocks, chessmen, strikers, grips, pens, buttons, stationery items, crockery, photoframes, table-lamps, sewing-machine parts, surgical goods, knitting-needles, toys, containers, etc.
The essential raw materials are polystyrene powder, alkethyne (cellulose acetate), plastic acrylic sheets,polyethylene chloride sheets, etc., which are mostly imported.
In 1967-68, 45 units were engaged in the industry which produced goods worth 5.68 lakhs of rupees. It gave employment to 158 workers.
(31) Musical Instruments.__ This industry came into being in 1892. Before that time, musical instruments were imported form France. The industry produces harmonium, tabla, dholak, banjo and sitar. The raw materials required are wood, dhama wire, etc.
In 1967-68, 38 units were engaged in the manufacture of musical instruments. These units produced goods worth 1.5 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 70 workers.
(32) Oils and Perfumes.__ The industry is said to have been established in1860. The essential raw materials required are aromatic chemicals, essential oils, resin-oils and scents.
In 1967-68, two firms were engaged in manufacturing scented oils and perfumes. The total output of the industry was woth 4.5 lakhs of rupees and 20 persons were engaged in it.
(iii) Village Industries and Handicrafts
The various village industries existing in the district are given below:
(33) Handloom-Weaving.__ This is one of the important village industries and is carried on by hereditary weavers. Before the partition, it was in the hands of the Muslims. The weavers in the villages mostly use hand-spun cotton yarn, which is available in plenty from the village folk. The other varieties, i.e. staple and woolen yarn, except the worsted woolen yarn to some extent, are obtained from other States. Handloom-weaving is carried on in all the towns. In villages, it continues to be an important industry. The goods produced with handlooms are khaddar, kheses,bed-sheets, bed-covers, woolen blankets, shirting etc.
In 1967-68, 2,050 units, mostly located in the rural areas, were engaged in this trade. The value of the goods produced was to the tune of 43.4 lakhs of rupees and the industry gave employment to 9.706 persons.
(34) Shoes and Other Leather Goods.__ Shoemaking is also an ancient industry among the traditional shoemakers. In 1967-68, there were 580 units in the district, and these produced goods worth 37.55 lakhs of rupees and gave employment t 953 perrsons.
In rural areas, the manufacture is mostly confined to the desi jutti (country shoes) for local use. The basic raw material is leather.
(35) Leather-Trnning.__ Before the partition, Amritsar was famous for raw hides and skins, leather and leather goods. The trade was mostly in the hands of the Muslims. Now, it has been taken up by others. In 1967-68, 90 units were engaged in the industry. These units produced goods worth 31.8 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 275 persons.
(36) Village Ghani-Oil.__ In 1967-68, 54 units were engaged in the industry which gave employment to 215 persons. The production was worth 4 lakhs of rupees. The basic raw material for the industry is mustard (sarson).
(37) Ban- Making and Rope-Making.__ The manufacture of ban is under taken on family basis. Sarkanda and bhabar grass, the basic raw materials for the industry, are found in the district in abundance. Before the partition, the industry was mostly in the hands of the Muslims who used to manufacture moorahs, etc. The important centers of this industry are Khem Karan, Bullarwal, Govindwal and Fatehabad.
In 1967-68, 219 units were engaged in the industry. These units produced goods worth 3.58 lakhs of rupees and provided employment for 221 persons.
(38) Gur and Khandsari.__ In 1967-68, 768 units were engaged in the production of gur and khandsari in the district. These produced goods worth 20.80 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 1,185 workers.
Ivory-carving in Amritsar began with the comb trade about a century back. Combs are of special importance to the Sikhs, as a comb is one ot the fice symbols of Sikhism. Bomwood is used in large quantities. The finest comb is made of ivory, decorated with geometric patterns. Paper-knives, trays, bangles, chains, buttons, tags and the long parting combs of European toilet are also made. The raw material for these articles is partly purchased locally and is partly imported. This industry is facing crisis owing to the non availability of raw ivory according to the requirements.
At the time of the partition in 1947, only 3 units were engaged in the manufacture of ivory goods. By 1967-68, their number increased to 18 which produced goods worth 6.8 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 68 persons.
This is an old industry of the district, mainly concentrated in Amritsar which is the biggest processing center of pashmina in the Punjab. The local manufacturers purchase raw pashmina from Kulu and Mandi (in Himachal Pradesh) and get it cleaned and sorted out at Amritsar. In1966-67, there were 5 units engaged in this industry. These units produced goods worth 3.35 lakhs of rupees and gave employment to 21 persons.