Saturday, February 8, 2014

Salt making in the Rann of Kutch

-By Deepa Krishnan

Salt making in India is a very old tradition, dating back to the Harappan Civilisation. In her book "The Ancient Indus Valley: New Perspectives", Jane McIntosh suggests that salt was used by the ancient people of the Indus Valley both for cooking and for preserving food-products such as fish. Findings from a Harrapan excavation site at Padri in Saurashtra, Gujarat suggest that it was probably a salt making area.
Photo source:
The East India Company established a monopoly over the production and supply of salt in India. Kharaghoda in the Surendranagar district of Gujarat became the salt hub under the East India Company. By the mid-1800's, 10% of the total revenues of the Company came from salt.

In later years, under the British monarchy, heavy taxes were levied on Indian salt to discourage local production and encourage import of salt from England. When India became independent in 1947, salt was being imported from the United Kingdom and Aden. However, by 1953, India had achieved self-sufficiency in salt. India is now the third largest producer of salt in the world nearly 30% of our annual production of 17 million tonnes is exported.

No comments:

Post a Comment