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2 I. 1 Introduction
2 1.2 Importance of Nutrition
2 1.3 Nutrient Groups and their Functions
2 I .4 Essential Nutrients
2 1.5 Food as Fuel for the Body Machine
2 1.6 Balanced Diet
21.7 Food Fads
2 1.8 Food Allergies
2 1.9 Adulteration of Food
2 1.10 Malnutrition and 111 Health
2 1.1 1 Summary
2 1.12 Terminal Questions
2 I. 13 Answers

. -

In the previous unit you have studied the limitations regarding availability and distribution
of food in India. A large section of our population is under-nourished. Apart from not having
enough to eat, their diet is generally deficient in certain components essential for health. An
additional factor is the lack of awareness about.proper nutrition. In this unit we will learn
how we can improve our health by making the best use of the food available to us.
A dinner table with a variety of mouth-watering preparations appears far more tempting than a
simple meal of rice, chapati, dal, vegetables and curds. Yet. the former may be inferior and
incomplete from the point bf view of what the body needs for survival, growth and activity. It
may lack many important ingredients necessary to keep our body fit and healthy. Again some
foods look different, but are similar in their nutritional value, e.g.. milk, egg, meat, fish etc.
One may consume large quantities of food without getting proper nutrition, because it may
lack one or more essential components. How can we find out whether a meal is complete or
not? In this unit we will learn to classify nutrient groups of food, the amounts necessary for
our body and how to get.these from different foods available to us. We will also learn the
concept of a balanced diet.
It is true that food choices of people are influenced by economic, social, educational and
cultural factors, but nutritional awareness, i.e. learning to choose food wisely is also an
important factor. You can possibly use the knowledge given in this unit, to modify your food
habits and enlighten others about it. We often find that families with large income are poorly
nourished and some families with small income are better nourished. This is because of a
more intelligent use of money on the part of the low income groups to obtain proper
nourishment. In addition, these simple concepts will enable you to realise the complexity of
social problems related to availability of proper food for all our people. We will also discuss
the problems of malnutrition and its magnitude.

After studying this unit you should be able to :
idedtify various nutrient groups in a given food,
judge your daily intake of food and see whether it fulfils your nutritional needs.
practise dietary habits which contribute to a healthy, attractive individual with an alert
compare food requirements of individuals according to age, sex, activity, body weight
and climate,
recognise the dangers of faulty food habits and food fads, .
list the diseases caused by malnutrition and deficiency of vitam~nsartd mlnerius,
realise the hann caused by adulterated food stuffs,
recognise the importance of safeguarding food from spoilage and waste at home, and in
stores and godowns.
In this unit, there are many tables. You are not expected to memorise them. They have been
compiled for reference when necessary.


We cannot live without food. Our hunger can be satisfied by any kind o? meal, but to remain
healthy and free of disease, our body requires certain kinds of food. The health of an
individual is largely determined by the quality of food taken. Moreover, food makes a
difference in our appearance, activity, behaviour, and in the quality of life.
Foods vary in their composition and no one type of food contains all we need, in the
amounts that we need. A meal lacking in a particular requirement of our body for a
prolonged period can result in disease, and even in death. Therefore, a knowledge of the
food requirements of our body and various sources of obtaining them is essential. Studies
carried out in many countries show that a good diet has promoted proper growth in children
and has improved the general heahh ofthe people. A study of Japanese children has shown
that an improved diet has increased the average height of children, from what it was a few
decades ago.
A majority of the children of the developing countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America are
generally poorly nourished. some of them do not get enough to eat, while the diet of others
is deficient in some foods that are essential for the body. So, we find a steady retardation in
the physical and mental growth of these children and they suffer from various deficiency
The science of nutritioo is a well developed discipline today. We know enough about what
kind of nourishment is necessary for our child and adult population. The main problem is to
make this information available to our people and to ensure that the food contains d l the
necessary ingredients. Of course, the foods must be available to the people.


We should know that our body is made up of different chemical substances which are related
to the food we take. Scientists have determined the chemical substances present in different
foods and their role in the body. They call these substances "nutrients" and have classified
them in different groups.
In order to get an idea about the nutrients of food, let us examine a familiar dish of peas and
potato curry prepared in our homes. For preparing it, besides oil or ghee, onions, tomatoes
and some spices are used. What these ingredients provide in terms of nutrients are listed below:
Ingredients Class of Nutrients
I Potatoes .Carbohydrates
2 Peas Roteins and carbohydrates
3 Gheeloil Fats
4 Onions Minerals
5 Tomatoes Vitamins and minerals
6 Spices Minerals
7 Water Water

This dish is given as an example in order to illustrate how all the classes of nutrients
required by our body can be included in our meal. These six classes of nutrients, namely,
carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals and water, must be included in our meals in
correct proportion. This need can be fulfilled from a single dish or from a combination of
dishes, prepared from a wide variety of food sources. If one of the ingredients of this recipe
is deleted, we lose the corresponding nutrient. This is how we evaluate every food -
You know that f d habits vary from place to place all over India. Chapatis are the staple
food in many parts of north India and rice is the staple food in south and east India. People
in other countries also have their preferences in food. These habits are mostly due to the
availability of a particular tyfe of food stuff. Anyway, no particular food is absolutely
necessary, because many alternativesto it can provide the same nutrients. Here, we must
note that no single item of food contains exactly the same nutrients as any other singIe item.
Foods which have common nutrients can be put together as a Food Group. This provides us
with a wide choice of alternate food items. Table 2 1.1 gives these food groups and their
nutrient composition.
Table 21.1: Food Groups and Their Major Nutrients

1 Food Group I Nutrients I

Crmls ud Millets Carbohydrates. Roteins;lron and Vitamins of B group

PUIRS ad legume^ Roteins, Carbohydrates, Iron and Vitamins of B group


Nuts ad Oilseeds Fats and Roteins

Milk md Milk products Fats, Roteins and Vitamins

Mcata. Fish and Eggs Proteins and some V~tam~ns


I Carbohydrates

t I

Roots and Tubers

I Carbohydrates

Vegetabks and Fruits Vitamins and Minerals

ÿ agriculture, Nutritionand Some foods have a great deal of one nutrient and very little or none at all of others. For
example, oils and fats contain mostly fat, sugar is purely a carbohydrate. The six nutrients
are present in various food stuffs in varying proportions. Depending upon the relative
concentration of the nutrients contained, foods are chssified as protein-rich, carbohydrate.
rich or vitamin-rich foods. For good nutrition, we need to eat a combination of many
different kinds of foods.

List the food items you had for lunch today, and using Table 2 1.1 classify them into food
groups and give their major nutrients. The first item has been worked out to give you an
idea. Check whether all the nutrients were present in your lunch.
- -
Food Items Food Groups Major Nutrients

I . Chapati Cereals and Millers Carbohydrates. Proteins. lrori and

Vitamins of B Group

2. Rice ........................ ......................

7 ................ ........................ ......................

Note: While considering the nutrients of a cooked item, you must account for all the ingredients used in a recipe.
For example. in finding the nutrients present in a biscuit, you should account for flour. milk. sugar, fat etc.
used in making it.

Functions of Food
What do you think is the function of food?
Before you read on, write down the functions of f M n the space below.

The fwd we take performs the following functions :

i) Food gives our body fuel to bum for warmth andenergy. The energy is used to cany
on both the internal and the external activities of the body. Examples of internal
activ~tiesare : functioning of the brain, beating of the heart, breathing, digestion of
food, excretory processes etc. They go on non-stop as long as we live. The external
activities consist of all kinds of work, play and exercises.
ii) Food is also necessary for growth and development. mainly in children. Food gives us
material to build strong muscles and to produce blood. It is also used for continual
repair of body tissues.
iii) Food has a protective function also. It helps our body to fight infection and enables us
to live to a ripe old age.
Let us now see, which of these functions of food are assigned to the nutrients we have listed
i) Carbohydrates and Fats are the mgin energy source for the body. Carbohydrates are
easily available and are the cheapest source of energy. Fats also serve as an
"emergency energy store" in the body, to be used, for example, when enough food is
not available due to fasting or starvation. Therefore. carbohydrates and fats are called
Energy Foods.
ii) Proteins are the raw matt?rial used for building muscles, skin, blood and bones. They
repair the tissues which are constantly worn out. Therefore, we need to have proteins
everyc!nj and cannot 11vewithout them. Proteins can also serve as an energy source, if
the energy rrz+d ot the M y is not met by carbohydrate!, and fats. They also help us to
i'rotr:i:i . dre called Body Building Foods.
I ,pht ~nfect~ctn.
iii) Minerals and Wtamins are not a source of energy but they are necessary in many of Food srid Nutrition
the steps involved in the release of energy in the cells. Thus, they help the body to
make good use of food. They protect us from illness. Minerals, such as calcium, are the
basic components of bones and teeth. Iron is a component of the red pigment of blood
called haemoglobin. Minerals are important in transmission of nerve impulses and for
muscle contraction and relaxation. Vitamins and minerals are called Protective Foods.
iv) Water is a component of all body fluids such as blood, digestive juices, ete. Water
accounts for about 50 to 70% of thebody weight. It is essential for various metabolic
activities. In fact, our body cannot utilise any substance, unless it is first turned into a
form soluble in water. Digestion converts food into a soluble form, so that it is readily
absorbed and is carried by the blood to the sites where it is needed. The waste products
I: \
like urea are carried by the blood to the kidneys from wherediey are excreted. Water
also plays a role in regulating the body temperature, through perspiration. The daily
water requirkment of the body depends on the climate, activity and the kind of food one
- takes

Give examples of various.typesof foods in the space indicated below :
Body buildingfoods ..........................................................


I Our body is a biochemical factory which can make many compounds for its needs.
However, there are limits to this, and what our body cannot make has to be provided by a
suitable choice of food. Such compounds are called essential nutrients. Each one of the
I nutrients has many components. For example. most proteins are composed of twelve to
twenty different amino acids. Ten of them cannot be manufactured by the body and have to
be supplied through diet. They are called essential amino acids. The remaining are non-
essential amino acids, in the sense that they can be made in the body from any protein food
we take. Similarly, a large number of vitamins and minerals and some fatty acids cannot be
made in the body. So they must be included in the diet.

Plant Proteins vs Animal Proteins

Proteins can be obtained from a variety of sources, such as grains, pulses, nuts, milk, fish,
meat:eggs, etc. But the nutritive quality and digestibility of these proteins is not equal. They
are present in different amounts in different food stuffs and their quality and the ease with
which they can be digestedcalso differs with their so,urce. Animal proteins have all the
essential amino acids and are called complete or high-quality proteins. They also have much
higher digestibility. Plant proteins lack one or more essential amino acids an+re called
incomplete proteins. Their digestibility is about 60%. Proteins, obtained from a variety of
plant sources can together be made as good as a single animal protein, because what is
missing in one plant protein may be compensated by another. For instance, in a meal of
cereals and pulses plant the essential amino acids missing in cereals are pulses and
vice versa. Surprisingly ,we Indians have been eating a combination of chapati-dal, or rice-
dal over the years, probably out of wisdom or experience. without any knowledge of the
existence of amino acids.

Remember, a mixed diet of various cereals, millets and pulses can fulfil the total nutritional
requirements of vegetarians. Soyabean is the richest source of plant protein. In comparison
I to other legumes, it contains twice as much protein. Eggs are relatively a cheaper source of
1 high-quality proteins when compared to meat. In India, a large percentage of people can
afford only cereals which contain mostly carbohydrates. Protein foods are expensive, thou'gh
even the prices of vegetables are going up. Scientists all over the world are trying to find
ways and means of obtaining proteins from new sources. Methods of extracting proteins
Agkulture, Nutrition and from ordinarily uneatable green leaves, algae and other sources are underway. Proteins art
complex substances and; unlike vitamins, cannot be manufactured in the laboratory at
present. There may be a time in future when it will become possible.
We should also know that an excess of proteins should not be taken in a single day,because
only a ponion of it will be used in building and repair of the body and the rest will be burnt
up to supplyenergy, or convened into fat. Since, proteins cannot be stored in the body, they
are wasted. On an average, an adult requires one gram ofprotein per kilogram of body
weight. The energy needs of the'body are better fulfilled by carbohydrate foods.

You are, probably, familiar with the names of some of the vitamins. They can be obtained
from plant and animal foods. Vitamins are required in small amounts and their prolonged
deficiency in food results in various diseases. In order to correct this situatibn, sometimes
vitamins have to be giyen as tonics or medicine. Vitamins are not a source of energy
themselves but they help in the release of energy from carbohydrates, and fats. Therefore,
food must contain required amounts of vitamins. There are various types of vitamins. A
particular vitaminpr a group of two or more vitamins, protect the health and assist in the
work of a particular organ of our body. Each vitamin has a specific function and cannot
sabstitute for another. Table 21.2 lists various vitamins, their sources and functions. Vitamin
A is needed for healthy eyes, smooth skin and glossy hair. Many children go blind in our
country because of vitamin A deficiency. This could be easily prevented, because foods
containing vitamin A, like carrots and green vegetables, are easily available. You will notice
that vitamins of the B group have many sub-groups. These have different functions but their
source is more or less the same. Sometimes children or even'adults complain of lack of
appetite. They never seem to be hungry for meals. This is due to the deficiency of vitamin B
group, which leads to undernutrition and retardatiop of growth.

Table 21.2: Vitamins, their. Functions, and Sources

Vitamins Functions Sources

Vitamin A Enables us to see in the dim light Butter, ghee, milk. egg-yolk
r ~ g21.1:
. Om year old Elmer Necessary for healthy eyes, smooth skin Fatty fish
MacCollum suffered from scurvy and glossy hair Dark.leafy vegetables
and there was no hope for his Required for normal bone formatiqn Deep )-ellowvegetable, fruits
survival. His mother happened to Vitamin B complex Essential for the functioning of nerves. Whole cereals
feed him apple peel. On finding B.B,,B,.B,,B,, bra~n,heart and other vital organs. Pulses. sprouted pulses
improvement in his health she kept Required for normal growth and Milk
' feeding him vegetables and fruits. development Egg
, Thus by keen observation she Helps in preventing anaemia Liver, brain, kidney
found the antiscurvy diet.
hterestingly, Elmer MacCollum Vitamin C Helps in rapid healing of wounds Amla, guava, papaya
grew to discover Vitamin A in Facilitates absorption of iron Citrus fruits
1913. Roper daily intake builds.resistance to . Green leafy vegetables
Vitamin D Helps in the absorption of calcium and Egg, fish liver oil
phosphorus in the intestine Chicken
Required for the proper formation of bones Butter, ghee
Exposure to sunlight
Vitamin E Prevents vitamin A from destruction Vegetable oils
Cereals. cereal germ oil
Vitamin K Prevents bleeding in wounds by clotting of Green leafy vegetables
the blood

Vitamin C is present in fresh fruits and vegetables, especially in citrus fruits and guava. It is
essential for the health of the mucous membrane which lines our mouth, nose and inner
organs. It helps in building resistance against infections like common cold. Vitamin D,
wh ch is present in eggs, milk, butter, etc., helps in proper formation of bones. Its deficiency
leads to weak bones or physical deformities like bow legs in children. This is the only
vitamin which our body can make in the skin, by the action of sunlight which is plenty in
India and costs nothing. Vitamin D is also called "sunshine vjtamin". Fig. 21.2 shows
various foods rich in vitamin C. I '
We should know that vitamins B and C are water sohble. Therefore, they cannot be retained
in the body and should be included in our daily m_eegls.Other vitamins are not water soluble.
Their excess is stored in the body. An overdose of vitamins can also cause illness. They
should be taken. as a tonic or medicine, only after consulting a doctor. It has recently been
found that indiscriminate use of vitamin B complex and vitamin C leads to wide range of
adverse effects on health, such as headache, im-tability,insomnia, nausea, etc.
Vitamins are susceptible to destruction under certain conditions. Therefore, great care
should be taken to retain them while cooking. For example, vitamin C and vitamins of B
group, being water soluble, are washed off when we cut or wash the vegetables or fruit.
Vitamin C gets destroyed in cooking at high temperature. Therefore, amla, green pepper,
lemon and other c i m s fruits which are rich sources of vitamin C, should be eaten raw,
instead of being cooked. Vitamin B,, which is present in milk, ceteals and vegetables, etc., is
destroyed by long exposure to sunlight.
In general, the following precautions should be taken while cooking, so as to retain
maximum amounts of vitamins in the food.

i) Use as little water as possible for washing and cookin,

ii) Do not throw the water used for soaking or cooking rice, pulses vegetables, etc. It
must either be used for cooking or consumed in some other way.
iii) Vegetables should be washed before cutting, otherwise the vitamins will leak out from
the cut vegetables into water and get washed away.
iv) Vegetables should be cooked soon after cutting.
v) Cook for the shortest possible period and serve it immediately.
Ng 21.2 Vitamin C content pex
vi) Do not use baking soda because it destroys vitamin C. loog of food stuff.

Our bones and teeth contain large amounts of calcium. An adult has a total of about 1 kg of
calcium and a baby has about 30g in their bones. So, during the period of growth from a
baby to an adult, a large amount of calcium has to be added to the bones. Therefore, doctors
prescribe calcium tablets to children and pregnant women. Calcium is always present in the
body in combination with another mineral. phosphorus. Milk and green leafy vegetables are
a very good source of calcium. It is also required for proper working of muscles and for .
clotting of blood.
Another important mineral is iron which is required for making haemoglobin in the blood.
Haemoglobin gives red colour to the blood. In comparison to 1 kg of calcium, the total
amount of iron in the body is about 3 g. Iron is necessary for growing children and pregnant
women. During the menstrual period, women lose iron and therefore, they need extra iron.
Fig. 2 1.3 shows various food rich in iron.
About 17 different minerals are necessary for healthy functioning of our body, though their
amount is insignificant in comparison to the bulk of food taken by us. Hence, these minerals
are often referred to as "micronutrients". Some of these minerals are constituents of the body
cells and the body fluids, and as such take part in chemical reactions in the cells. Have you
heard of fluoride toothpastes? Fluorine is essential to produce strong teeth that resist decay.
That is why the toothpastes containing fluorine are being promoted these days. But excess of
fluorine also is harmful. Water of some districts in Andhra Pradesh and Punjab has excess of Fig. 213: Iron canmt in food stuff
flourine. Consumption of this water results in lustreless stained teeth and weakened enamel. per 100 g graded oa a.10 poinr scale

all take common salt in every meal. It is essential for the proper working of the body.
Common salt is a chloride of sodium. A minute amount of iodine is an important part of the
hormone produced-by thyroid glandin the neck. Its deficiency causes thyroid gland to swell,
a condition knowcas goitre: Now iodised salt i$ available in the market which can provide us
1 with iodine. .

~ A Q y' .
I .
:.a) Fill ii the blanks' :
I i) ............................... are those which our body can not synthesise.
ii)' Plant proteins ...... ,..... in some ............. amino acids.
. iii) ............ is the richest source ofplant. ..................
iv) ............. .........................a n d . . . . . . . . . . . . arehigh
quality proteins because they contain all the .......... ; ...
V) Excess of proteins taken in a day is converted into ............. and. ...........
Agriculture, Nutrition and vi) Energy needs of body should be met by . . . . .. . . . . . . .
vii) A mixed diet of. . . . . . . . . . . . , . . . . . . . . . . . . and . . . . . . . . . . . . provides as
good a protein as meat.
b) Match the vitamins and minerals given in column 1 with their functions listed in column
2 of the following table :

Vitamins and Mlnerais Functions

a) Vitamin B i) Builds resistance to infection

b) Vitamin A ii) Necessary for the formation of haemoglobin
of the blood
c) Vitamin D iii) Its absence may cause bow legs
d) Vitamin K iv) For building strong bones and teeth
e) Vitamin C v) Helps us to have healthy eyes, smooth'skin
and shiny hair
f) Calcium vi) It prevents bleeding
g) Iron vii) Important for proper functioning of nerves
and brain
h) Iodine viii) Revents swelling of thyroid gland.


We mentioned earlier that.the body requires food for internal as well as external activities
and for growth. Another way of looking at this is that the body requires energy for both its
Oulloing Air Incoming Air
internal and external activities. In this sense, the body can be compared with a machine and
food is the fuel which is required to run the body. Energy is produced in the body from food
by a process called metabolism which is comparable to combustion or burning of a fuel.
Oxygen is used up in this 'combustion' and carbon dioxide is produced. If the body does not
get at least a minimum of energy, it will not be able to carry on its normal internal functions
or undertake external work.

However, a major difference between a machine and the human body is that the latter is
combsed of the same fuel which it uses to provide energy. A machine cannot use itself as
fuel to run. But our body cah. Thus, during fast the body can bum its own fats to get energy,
resulting in loss of weight. If a body is supplied with more energy than is required to run it,
it is stored in the body in the form of fat for future use.
Energy requirements of the body are measured in terns of "calories" or kilo-calories (1000
calories), usually written as Calories, with a capital C. For example, a tea spoon of sugar (5
gm), when burnt, produces 20 Calories of heat. Scientists have studied energy requirements
of infants, girls, boys and adults of different ages and weights to find out how many Caloties
Flg 21.4: A key Nutritional they use in doing different things. You would be curious to know how much food is required
Experiment. In 1783 Antoine to keep our body healthy and active. In order to calculate this, we need to know :
Lavoisier and Pierre de Laplace
showed that body "bums" food i) energy value of different nutrients and
much as a fire does. In the
experiment shown above they ii) factors influencing the energy requirement of an individual.
n~asuredheat output (as the amount
of melted ice) and carbon dioxide Energy provided by different nutrients is given below and may be compared with petrol.
produced by Guinea pig, and found
them in the same proportion as Carbohydrates
produced by the burning of charcoal.
The energy and nutritive value of Indian foods is published by the Indian Council of
Medical Research. In Table 2 1.3 we have listed some common food stuffs and their energy
and protein content.
Table 2 1 3 :Energy and Protein Contents of Some Common Foods

Food stuffs Energy (Ce11100g) Proteins (g)

Cereals 340 10-13

Pulses and Legumes 345 20-25

Soyabean 430 43
Milk-Buffalo 120 4.3
Cow 70 3.2
Vegetable oils & Fats
Coconut (dry)


Let us now find out what determines the energy required by a person in a day. The energy
requirement of an individual depends mainly upon:

i) internal or basic processes of the body which is also called Basal Metabolic Rate
(BMR) and
-ii) physical activity.
Greater part of the energy. is spent for internal activities or for Basal Metabolism, which is
influenced by various factors like surface area of the body, sex, age, sleep, body
temperature, level of hormones, etc. For example, the BMR for different persons and states
is as follows:
Tall thin person > Short thin person,
Muscular person > Short fat person,
infant > Adolescent
Male > Female
Awake > Sleep
Young person'> Old person
During fever > Normal health
Cold climate > Hot climate
Physical activities depend upon the kind of work done by an individual, whether it is light,
moderate, or heavy work. The requirement for physical activities is generally lower than
BMR, except in case of persons engaged in very hard physical work like stone-cutting,
running, etc. You must have noticed that after hard physical work we feel very hungry arld
eat a lot more food than when we are sitting idle. The table below lists sedentary, light,
moderate and vigorous adtivities and expenditure of energy in Cal/hr.
~ ~ r i c u l t u rNutrition
e, and Table 21.4: Approxlmte Energy Needs for Various Kinds of Adlvlties
Light work Moderate work Hard work Strenuous work
150 CaUhr 150-250 CaUhr 250-350 Callhr 350 CaUhr

Reading Mopping Cycling Hard labour

Writing Scrubbing floor Playing g p e s Playing tennis, football, hockey,
Typing Washing clothes Sawing wood Running fast cycling.
Dish ~ a s h i n g Polishing Fast swimming
Ironing Gardentag
Sitting Carpentry
Serving Walking .

The average total energy need of a moderately active person is often taken to be 2000
Calories per day.


In the previous section's, we have dealt with quality and quantity of food. Both of these
should be balanced in a diet. A balanced diet is a combination of various foods which can
fulfil energy needs of a person and can provide proteins, vitamins and minerals in proper
quantity and proportion required to keep him healthy. Figure 21.5 shows the percentage of
Calories derived from different food stuffs in a balanced diet. Table 21.5 provides the
composition of a balanced diet for various age groups.
Table 21.5 : Balanced Dlet for Various Age Groups

Food Item Amounts required in g

Fig. 21.5: Division of Calories Adult (Moderate - F're-school children
among Food Stuffs in a Balanced work)
Diet according to Nutrient Male Female Additional Girls Boys
requirement. Allowance
preg-Lactating 1-3 4-6 10-12 13-18 13-18

Mixed cereals
Pulses and Legumes
Green leafy
Other vegetables
Roots and Tubers
Fats and Oils
Sugar and Jaggery

Total Calories 2800 2200 2200 2200 1200 1500 2100 2200 2500-
+300 +700 3000

Fig 21.6 Fig 21.7

Obesity Food
Generally, fat people think that their overweight is due to their constitution andfor heredity.
It could be true in some cases. But have you ever come across a fat labourer, coolie, athlete,
or mountaineer? Although, they eat a lot more than obese people, they do not gain-weight.
Why? Because they use up the calories in physical activities. When the intake of calories is
more than what is needed, the excess is deposited in the form of fat on the body and the
person gradually becomes over-weight. Right weight and active habits are good for health.

Fig 21.8

Dietary Requirement during Fever and Infection

During fever, there is a break down of tissue proteins, and water and salts are lost. The BMR
increases with the rise of every degree of temperature. What kind of diet is desirable under
such circumstances?
With an increase of BMR and break down of tissue proteins, a diet rich in proteins and
c&x.ies is desirable. Patients should be given easily digestible foods such as milk, eggs,
custard, pudding, fruit jlrices, etc. Glucose and sugar can fulfil immediate energy demands.

Dlrring fever, fats like butter, ghee and vegetable oils should be avoided, but once the fever
has gone they should be included in the diet, becausethey are a rich source of energy.

Now thatyou have learnt so much about food, you must be feeling hungry. Have a break
and treat yourself with a snack you fancy, and then attempt the following SAQ.

a) Strike off the wrong word(s) from those given within the! brackets.
i) Twenty grams of fat provides energy equivalent to (20g/45@@) of carbohydrates.
ii) Children require (low energyhigh energy) and (low pmtein/high protein) diet.
iii) A young person needs (monlless) energy than an old person.
iv) A person becomes obese because of (heredity/constitution/excessivtinlake of
energyhigh BMR).
b) A meal consists of the following items. Calculate its energy contents,;use the datagiven in
Table 21.3.
2 Chapatis (25g each) ..................................................
1 Plate rice (5Og) . .................................................
2 Servings dal(25g) .................................................
1 Serving spinach (50g) .................................................
1 Serving potatoes (90g) .................................................
1 Mango (15Og) .................................................
1 Tabk spoon of fqt (1%) .................................................
- ---
Agrkulture, Nutrltlon and
Hcnlth ' 21.7 FOOD FADS
You may have picked up the idea from your family or friends that certain combinations of
food can be dangerous for your health. For example, fish and milk or radish and milk taken
together are dangerous because they result in a skin disease called leucoderma or white
patches on the skin. Milk should not be taken immediately after eating curd or with fruits
because it will curdle in the stomach. In fact, there is no scientific basis for such beliefs. Do
you know what happens to milk in the stomach? Our stomach contains gastric juices which
curdle milk before it is digested.

Some people also recommend certain food combinations to cure some illnesses. Such
suggestions may come from well-meaning friends, but they may not be safe to practise
because the diet may lack in some essential food nutrients. At such times we should take the
diet prescribed by a physician.
- - - -


Food allergies are different from food fads. Certain f d s seem to have strange reactions on
some people. Probably, you have come across a person who got skin rashes everytime he ate
eggs. Certain substances in food cause "allergy" to some people. Allergy is the scientific
name given to a disturbance which arises when a person is sensitive to a substance. Some
people are allergic to pollen, others are allergic to skin-contact with some materials. Allergy
to medicines is also common. In fact, before giving a penicillin injection, doctors first test
whether the patient is allergic to it. Foods which cause allergies are, fish, eggs, milk and
milk products. Substances that cause allergy are protein in nature.

Food allergies are manifested in the form of skin rashes, skin eruption called eczema.
asthma, frequent sneezing, one-sided severe headache called migraine, vomiting, diarrhoea,


We live in a society where some times foods and even medicines are sold in an adulterated
form by mixing it with other materials, which are neither food nor medicine. For example,
pure ghee may be adulterated with dalda or cooking oils may be mixed with cheaper oils or
mineral oils. They are also flavoured with chemicals. Pulses may be sold with stones and
wheat flour may contain chalk powder. Similarly, ground spices, tea and coffee are also
adulterated. Commonest example is adulteration of milk with water, sometimes unclean
water! All these are practised by traders to gain more profit. Out of greed, traders fail to
realise that these acts are injurious to the health of the people. For example, adulteration of
mustard oil with argemone oil results in paralysis. Bengal gram dal is mixed with Khesari
dal which causes lathyrism, a crippling disease characterised by paralysis of the legs.
Turmeric is often adulterated with a poisonous substance called "metanil yellow" which can
cause cancer.

Food advertising agencies also mislead people by making false claims a b u t their products.
A close guard against such propaganda is also necessary. What can be done to stop such
practices? Government should enforce strict rules against adulteration of food items, and
give exemplary punishment to the guilty. The consumer can also form consumer welfare
society through which they can give expression to their grievances and also build public
pressure against such practices. In USA such societies are very powerful and they closely
monitor various products in the market.


In section 21.6 we have learnt about balanced diet. Now, we will turn our attention to the
health problems resulting from inadequate nutrition.

Are you familiar with the term malnutrition? Malnutrition means either lack of sufficient
food or imbalance of nutrients in the diet, resulting in the impairment of health. Protein-
calorie deficiency and the resulting malnutrition are prevalent in India and in other Food and Nutrltbn
developing nations of Asia, Africa and Latin America.

What are the causes of malnutrition in India?

Some of .the causes are as follows :
I Poverty
2 Large population
3 Inadequate production and inequitable distribution of food
Can you add some more to this list?
Well, lack of education, ignorance and faulty food habits aIso contribute to malnutrition.
As you know, population and poverty are distributed unevenly on this planet. Affluent
countries like USA, Canada, USSR, Australia, etc. have smaller populations and higher
standards of living than developing countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America which have
70% of the world population and a lower standard of living. Approximately, three quarters
of the under-nourished people of the world live in the Indian subcontinent.
India is the second most populated country in the world. It is estimated that by 2000 A.D.,
the population may increase up to 1000 million. Rising population increases the total
demand of food. The Planning Commission has estimated that 48% of rural population and
4 1% of the urban population in 1977-78 were below the poverty line, that is, they were
unable to obtain a balanced diet of appropriate calorie value. So you see a large percentage
of our people are under-nourished. According to the latest estimates, the percentage under
the poverty line has decreased to about 39% but in the meantime, population has also
increased. So the total number of such persons, men, women and children, runs up to a good
300 million people! Our production of food has to be increased but actual availability
depends on the buying power, which means people should have money to buy a proper
meal, which means in turn, more employment and better wages. This is an uphill task and
requires considerable economic changes in the country.

At the social level, we should not waste food. We often find that in large festive gatherings.
whether of affluent or of poor people, substantial amounts of food are thrown away. We
should also avoid eating excess of food either in terms of protein or calories.

Let us continue with our discussion on the problem of malnutrition in India. The inadequacy
of food results in nutritional deficiencies and reduces the intake of one or more nutrients.
This results in poor health, increased susceptibility to disease and in reduction of the life
span. Money spent on treatment of ill health and disease could possibly have improved
nutrition to avoid disease!
Diseases due to Protein-CaIorie malnutridon
The developing countries of the world today are faced with diseases due to Protein-Calorie
malnutrition. The most affected group are the little babies and children of the poor and
uneducated class, which constitute a majority of our population.

Two severe diseases due to deficiency of proteins and protein-calorie are Kwashiorkar and
Marasmus, respectively. Millions of children die annually and millions more go through a
miserable life. They retard the child's physical growth and weaken its natural immunity to
various infections. In extreme cases, children are mentally retarded and they never reach
maturity and thus become a burden to the family and the nation.

This disease was first recognised in 1935, in African children and it is named from two
words of an African dialect, meaning first and second, i.e. sickness that strikes the first
child, when he is soon displaced at his mother's breast by the second born.

Why do babies lose weight during weaning? On weaning, a child requires more than twice
as much protein in relation to body weight as do adults. In spite of the nutritional status of
the mothers, breast milk provides enough nutrition in quality and quantity for babies up to 6
months, and it IS free of infection. For proper growth, children, after six months, require
supplementary food which is not available due to some of the following reasons :
Agriculture, Nutrition and 1 Increased financial burden, if the next child is born.
2 Because of ignorance, the best food is usually given to men who are supposed to be
bread winners; children and women eat whatever is left.
3 Babies prefer breast milk, they are fussy about taste, and refuse new items included in
the diet.
4 As most Indians can afford only vegetarian diet, it, therefore, becomes very difficult to
. provide sufficient proteins to a child, unless the food is consumed in large quantities.
Due to meagre energy food and protein intake, the child gradually loses appetite and often
develops weaning diarrhoea. It is generally believed that diarrhoea is due to teething. This is
incorrect. In fact, diarrhoea during teething is due to infection. Because of sensation in the
gums, babies like to chew hard things and also pick up whatever is lying on the floor. Thus,
they get infection from dirt or from chewing unwashed vegetables, fruits, etc. This, often,
misleads the mother, who further restricts the diet mainly to carbohydrate gruels. Thus, the
child is deprived of the much needed protein diet.

Fig. 21.9: Marasmus: Severe wasting of muscle Fig 21.10: Kwashiorkar: (a) The severe deficiency of
and loss of subcutaneous fat is due to deficiency proteins is characterised by pot belly and oedemu fb) on
of calories and proteins. The child looks like a feeding high proteins oedema disappears but underlying
living skeleton. malnutrition becomes apparent.

This is caused due to the severe deficiency of both proteins and calories in the diet.
Nutritional surveys among pre-school (1 to 5 years) children show that more than 90% of
children of lower economic groups do not get required calories per day. Therefore, such
. ' children become victims of marasmus. This is manifested by severe retardation in growth,
loss of muscles and subcutaneous fat.

Deficiency due to iron and vitamin A causes anaemia and eye lesions respectively. There are
other diseases prevalent mainly among low income groups due to deficiency of other
vitamins and minerals. Some of the diseases can be cured by making certain foods available
to the people. Figs. 21.9 to 21.13 show deficiency symptoms of some of the diseases.

So we conclude that to curb malnutrition. our country needs to produce and distribute
sufficient food to meet the basic energy (calorie) requirements of our vast population. And
once this need is fulfilled, ways of supplementing the food with proteins, vitamins and
minerals can be worked out to improve its quality.
Fig 21.11: Rickets: Deficiency of Fig. 21.12: Pellagra: Deficiency of Vitamrn Fig. 21.13: Goitre: Deficiency of iodine causes
Vitamin D results in rickets in children. B, causes Pellagra characterlsed by typ~cal enlargement of thyroid gland. Disease is
Weekend bones curve laterally. These th~ckeningand spottlng of the skin. common in Rajasthan and Himalayan territories.
early deformities of bones persist
throughout life.

In this unit we have tried to explain that the nutritive quality of a diet greatly determines the
health of an individual. We have provided you with the knowledge about the type of
nutrition necessary for us at various stages of our life. Due to insufficient fwd and its
inequitable distribution, the energy demand of most of our people is not fulfilled. The
. problem of malnutrition continues and severe deficiency diseases are prevalent in our

country. Thus, you have learnt that :

food consists of 6 classes of nutrients :
carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals and water.
the bulk of the food we eat provides us with energy. It is used for growth, development
and maintenance of our body. A small but essential part of the food we consume is
vitamins and minerals. This helps in regulating the processes of our body and protecting
our body from infection.
food stuffs containing the same type of nutrients are put together into a food group.
According to the functions performed in the body, the nutrients are also classified as
energy foods (i.e. carbohydrates and fats), body-building foods (i.e. proteins) and
protective foods (i.e. vitamins and minerals).
energy value of food is expressed in calories. The calorie requirements depend on age,
sex, type of activity, climate, etc.
adulterated foods, and sometimes food fads, may affect our health adversely. Also, some
people may be allergic to certain protein foods.
millions of children of the world suffer from diseases such as kwasn~orkarand marasmus
which are caused due to protein-calorie malnuhition.


1) Write down the nutrients of the food items listed below.

Roasted gram
I b) Peanuts I
-- --

d) Boiled Egg
e) Bread Pakora
f) Orange
g) Campa Cola
h) Potato chips
~ g r h h r eNubltbm
, .ad 2) In comparison with an average adult what type($ of extra.foods would you mommend
Haltb for the following categories of people?

eawdpcopk Typea of food

Body building foods
Energy foods

3) Arrange in increasing order the energy needs of the people of same weight involved
in various activities.
Cycling, coolie type work, washing clothes, typing
4) We have listed some diseases in column 1; write down the corresponding deficiencies in
column 2.

Meews Deflckney

a) Night blindness
b) Goitre
C) Kwashiorkar

f) Rickets 1
g) Anaemia I
Self Assessment Questions

2) Body building foods--milk add milk products, egg, meat, fish, pulses, legumes,
soyabean, etc.
Energy giving f o o d d e r e a l s , millets, fats and oil, sugar, honey, jaggery, potatoes
Protective foods-green leafy vegetables, deep yellow vegetables, fruits, etc.
3) a) i) Essential nutrients ii) lack, essential iii) soyabean, proteins iv) milk, fish,
eggs and meats, essential amino acids v) energy and fat vi) carbohydrates
vii) cereals. millets, pulses.
b) a) vii b) v c) iii d) vi e) i f) iv g) ii h) viii
4) a) (i) 45 g (ii) high energy, high protein (iii) more (iv) excessive intake of energy
b) 812Cal.
Termid Questions
I ) a) Carbohydrates, Roteins b) carbohydrates,' Fats, Proteins c) Carbohydrates, Fats
d) Proteins, Fats, Vitamins e) Carbohydrates, Fats f) Vitamin C g) Carbohydrates
h) Carbohydrates, Fats.
2) b) energy foods c) Body building foods, Rotective foods, Calcium and Iron d) Body
building foods, Calcium e) Body building foods, Energy foods, Calcium
3) typing < washing clothes < cycling <coolie type work
4) a) Vitamin A b) Iodine c) Protein d) Calories e) Calcium and Vitamin D f) Iron.

22.1 Introduction
22.2 What is Good Health
22.3 Disease
Types of Diseases
22.4 Infectious Diseases
Discovery of Microbes
Microbes are Resent Everywhere
How do Microbes Enter Our Body7
Body's Battle Against Germs
22.5 Spread of Diseases or Transmission
22.6 Prevention of Diseases
Revention in Ancient Times
The Modem Concept of Preventive Medicine
Control of Environment
22.7 Health Care in India
22.8 ADS
22.9 Summary
22.10 Termlnal Questions
22.11 Answers

In the previous unit on food and nutrition we have dealt with the importance of balanced diet
in maintaining health. You have also learnt that a majority of $)urpeople suffer from many
'deficiency diseases due to malnutrition. In this unit we will discuss how lack of clean
drinking water, inadequate living conditions, poor environmental sanitation, lack of health
education, etc. result in diseases. These factors affect the health of not only an individual but
of the community as a whole. Disease results from a compli~atediateractibn between man
and his environment. Furthermore. physical and mental stress which greatly affect our health
is also determined by the environment we live in.
Diseases can be prevented by taking appropriate social measures, and prevention of disease
is perhaps far less expensive than its cure, particularly when millions of people are involved.
Health education of common people, therefore, has crucial importance in the maintenance of
In the first section of this unit we will talk about the causes of infectious diseases, and how
they are transmitted. The causes are no more a mystery. Infectious diseases are caused by
tiny invisible creatures. You will know about their discovery, modes of entry into the body
and the way they quickly spreid from one person to another. You will also learn that our .
body has an elaborate defence system to fight them. In the following section we will discuss
the measures necessary to prevent these diseases.
Finally you will be introduced to health care system in India. We will discuss why we have
failed in establishing self-reliant health services for our society.

After reading this unit you will be able to :
understand what good health is,
distingujsh between infectious and non-infectious diseases,
. realise that common beliefs and dogmas related to the cause of disease are often
Agriculture, Nutrition and acquaint yourself with the discovery of disease-causing organisms,
find out how disease-causing organisms invade our body and spread from one person to
learn about the defence mechanism our body possesses to combat disease-causing agents.
explain why pure drinking water, cleq food, hygienic habits and environmental
sanitation are necessary for t'le prevention of infectious diseases,
discuss the reasons for shortcomings of the health services in rural India.
adopt methods necessary to control the rapid spread of AIDS.


All of us have a desire to live a long life. While it is desirable to live long, it is more
important to live well. Health is the greatest asset of our life, so we must all preserve it. The
World Health Organisation (WHO) defines health as, "a state of complete physical, mental
and social well-being and not merely an absence of disease or infirmity". So, there are three
components of health namely physical, mental and social. A person, who is fit in all three,
respects, is said to be in a state of positive health. In our ancient literature on health, there is
a similar definition. We can elaborate it and say that it is a state in which a person is able to
use all his intellectual, emotional and physical resources in the social and physical
environment he encounters. We may also say that a healthy person should make the best
possible use of his physical and mental assets, however great or small they may be.
Health involves, first of all, a proper working of all the organs of the body, because an ailing
body will always create mental tensions of its own. Mental and physicat health are inter-
related. Probably yoli have experienced that on being upset or depressed, your body
becomes lethargic and weak. However, a person with a perfectly healthy body may still have
social and psychological problems. But how do we know that we are mentally healthy?
The following are some of the characteristics of a mentally healthy person:
i) he or she is free from internal conflicts,
ii) he or she is well adjusted with others and can make satisfying and lasting relationships.
iii) he or she has self-control and can assume responsibilities,
iv) he or she can find satisfaction and happiness in achievements in accordance with his or
her abilities.
In this unit we do not intend to write down the rules for keeping good health. Instead, we
will concentrate on how the environmental factors adversely affect our health and contribute
to the spread of diseases. Before we discuss what we mean by disease, let us try the
following SAQ.

Fill in the blank spaces with appropriate words.
i) All the organs of the body work ..................... in a . ..................
ii) A healthy person cap make use of his ....................................
and physical resources within the social and physical environment he lives in.

All of us, at one time or another, have suffered from fever, aches. vomiting, nausea.
diarrhoea, flu, cold, general weaknessetc. Illness can arise from a number of factors, sucn as
failure of some part of the machine, i.e. our body, or inheritance of some tendency or
malfunction from the family, or problems due to aging or due to some infection etc. As you
have learnt in the previous units, it can also be due to some deficiency or even lack of
AIDS -stands for Acquired
Immune Deficiency Syndrome. You be familiar with the names of some of the serious diseases such as cancer,

tuberculosis, typhoid etc. A recent addition to the deadly diseases is the one called AIDS in
which the body loses all natural power to fight a disease.
We could say that a disease is a departure from the state of health. Any variation in the
normal structure or function of a tissue or an organ of the body could mean disease. Doctors
have various meth'dbs and instruments to f!nd out if a person is suffering from any disease
These are :
physical examination, like testing of eyesight or hearing the sound of heart beats, or Health and Disease
observing the movement of the limbs,
ii) biochemical tests performed on the tissues and fluids of the body, like testing if there is
sugar h the urine or too much fat in the blood,
iii) microscopic examination of the body fluids and/or excreta- the familiar examples are
blood, and stool test etc.,
iv) use of biophysical methods like X-rays, to detect fractures of bones, or to examine the
condition of the lungs,
v) surgery and other methods to locate diseased organs inside the body.

22.3.1 Types of Diseases

As we have indicated above. there are diseases,thata person is born with, for example, a
baby may have a defective heart at the time of its birth. Then there are some diseases like-
hamophilia in which there is a severe tendency to bleed even from a slight cut, because the
parents or grand parents had them. These diseases are called "congenital" diseases. Some
physical deformities are caused to babies at the time of their birth because they are handled
by untrained attendants. Then there are also diseases,which are broadly grouped as .
communicable or infectious, that is they are passed on from one person to another in
various ways, and,
Communicable diseases are caused by micro-organisms and worms; examples are cholera,
chicken pox. tuberculosis, malaria etc.
~dn-infectiousdiseases are those which are not due to an external infection, and so they
cannot be spread from person to person, for example anaemia, diabetes, arthritis etc. Some
common infectious and non-infectious diseases are listed in Table 22.1.

Table 22.1: Infectious and Non-infectiors Diseases

--- - -- - - -

Infectious Non-infectious
Disclrses Diseases

Common cough and cold Diabetes

Malaria Cancpr
Cholera Asthma
Tuberculosis Anhritis
Chicken pox Hysteria
Plague Kwashiorkar
Conjunctivitis Marasmus
Measles Scurvy
Mumps Obesity
Polio Haemophilia
' Diarrhoea

In this unit we will discuss only communicable diseases. The major problem of community
health has always been their control and prevention. If they are not prevented, they
sometimes spread rapidly over large areas and we say that there is an "epidemic". Since the
manner in which they spread is known, most of these diseases are preventable. Prevention of
these diseases requires many social measures, such as (i) clean drinking water supply,
(ii) effective sewage disposal, (iii) proper housing,.(iv) clean food. (v) control of pollution,
(vi) proper health services. (vii) mass vaccination programmes etc. The success of these
I Agriculture, Nutrition and measures largely depends upon the personal as well as collective effort of members of the
community. kbout 150 years ago, these diseases were very severe in countries and regions
I like USA, Canada and Europe also. But now they are well under control. However, as long
as they exist in any part of the world, communicable diseases could reach the countries
which are free of them. That is why there is a world-wide concern for their eradication from
the globe.
In the following sections of this unit we provide you with preliminary understanding of
infectious diseases and their modes of transmission. We will begin with the discovery of
microbes as a cause of infectious diseases and learn how they invade our body and how our
body combats them. With this knowledge, you will be able to appreciate different preventive
measures necessary for the control of such diseases.

a) Which of the following statements are true or false; indicate by putting T for true and F
for false in the given boxes.
i) Diseases which are present from the birth are called infectious diseases. 0
ii) Communicable diseases rapidly spread from one person to another. 0
iii) Absence of disease is an indicator of good health. 0
b) List the names of five diseases familiar to you. Classify them into infectious and non-
infectious diseases.
7- -v
Infectious ..............................................................


Some of you may have heard about the great bubonic plague, a fatal disease of the blood,
spread by fleas and respiratory secretions. It occurred in epidemic proportions throughout
most of Europe from thirteenth to nineteenth century. A major outbreak of plague in India
occurred in 1896 and lasted for fifteen years. It swept through villages and towns and killed
over eight million people. It seems that such diseases were common in ancient times.
Increased trade and commerce and resultant human traffic made them reach new places all
over the world. Similarly, diseases such as small pox, measles, influenza and cholera spread
easily from one person to another, and from one area to another. The reason for the spread of
these diseases, and many others, was not known till the nineteenth century. Till then, such
diseases always left people struck with terror because their causes were shrouded in
mystery. Due to ignorance, demons and evil spirits were blamed for causing these diseases.
In India, it was believed that these diseases weie a punishment from angry deities. A new
Goddess was created and held responsible for each disease. For example "Seetla Mata" is
said to cause small pox. People worshipped her to get cured from this disease. It would be
interesting to note here that small pox has been eradicated from this planet due to a planned
world-wide vaccination campaign. Plague outbreaks do not occur any more.
The poem given in the margin which children often sing while playing, is jointly sung at a
memorial service outside the village Eyam in England to pay homage to the townsfolk who
gave their lives three centuries ago to save others from the disease. These people got
affected by plague. In order to stop the spread of disease they confined themselves in their
Ring-a-ring of rosies village to save others.
A pocket full of posies
Achoo ! ~ c h o o ! The ring of rosies refers to tbe rose-shaped splotches on a plague victim. Posies were little
We all fall down flowers used to ward off the evil spirit. And Achoo! means sneezing which accompanied the
disease. The last line means that they all died.
You must have experienced that if somebody in the family is suffering from a cough or cold
you often catch it. Do you know why? Because these diseases are caused by germs or
"microbes" which can go from one person to another. "Microbes" means minute organisms
or germs. They are so small that we cannot see them with the naked eye. Some can be seen
with the help of an ordinary microscope while others are smaller still and can be seen only
under very special microscopes. Certain infectious diseases are caused by worms. We will
also discuss how they spread from one perso- another.
22.4.1 Discovery of Microbes Health and Disease

The discovery of microbes and the fact that they cause infectious diseases is one of the great
advances in science, which has helped us in understanding, preventing and eradicating

various diseases. Before this no-one had imagined that such tiny creatures could create
havoc in the life of human beings.

Antonie van Leeuwenhoek (Fig. 22.1), a-Dutch, was an expert in making lenses. He was the
first person to observe bacteria about 300 years ago. Out of curiosity, he examined the water
of marshy lakes, rain water. human excreta and scraping from his own teeth and was
astonished to find tiny living creatures in them. He named them "animalcules". They spun
about like a top or darted through water like little fish in a pond. He was perplexed, and he
pondered about their origin and role. He sent his observations to the Royal Society of
London. The Queen of England also came to see these "animalcules". van Leeuwenhoek
also made another significant observation that the scraping from teeth. if examined soon
after drinking hot coffee, contained only dead animalcules. His observations could not be
explored further by other scientists because he was a very suspicious and secretive person Fig. 22.1 : Antonie van
and did not teach anyone else to make lenses. Leeuwenhoek ( 1632-1723). opened
the door to the hidden world of
Another class of microbes were observed in the eighteenth century. but scientists took them microbes when he first observed
as idle curiosities of nature, because to blame disease on micro-organisms was to break with bacteria with the help of a lens.
Although only an amateur scie-tist,
century old tradition rooted in religious beliefs and dogmas. Lceuwenhoek's keen inleresl in
optics and his diligence led him to
In the middle of the nineteenth century, a famous French scientist, Louis Pasteur showed this imponantdiscovery.
that where disease was rampant, air was full of microbes, but where the air was clean.
disease was uncommon. You have read in Unit 12 about the experiment Pasteur conducted
to show that living organisms do not arise spontaneously. He also established that diseases
were due to germs. A few years later Robert Koch of Germany (Fig. 22.2) showed that a
specific kind of bacteria is responsible for anthrax. another for tuberculosis, a tliird for
plague etc. This splendid work motivated many scientists to identify and study bacteria that
were responsible for various diseases. It was found that malaria is caused by protozoan
called "plasmodium" which is carried by the female mosquito Anopheles. Their findings
often led to posiible cures of the diseases. Thus, the mystery of disease was unfolded. It is
worth giving a thought that if the first discovery of Leeuwenhoek was followed up instead of
being ignored because it went against established beliefs, perhaps millions of lives could -

have been saved. Fig. 22.2: Robert Koch ( 1843-1910)

A brilliant German physician gave
the first proaf that bacteria actually
Another class of microbes are virus. Common cough, cold, and viral fever which afflict cause disease. He also established
.many people these days, are caused by them. They are smaller than bacteria and therefore that a specific bacteria is responsible
remained a mystery till late in the nineteenth century. Virus cannot be seen with low power for a specific disease.
microscopes; they were observed only when more powerful microscopes were invented.
Virus are strange objects because they behave like chemical molecules, and cannot replicate
outside the living cell of the host animal. They can be crystallised like sugar or salt. But on
invading the host cell, they behave like a living organism and replicate like bacteria, to cause
fever or other diseases. Early Advocate of Sanitation. Edwin
Chadwick was a lawyer in England.
During the Industrial Revolution, Edwin Chadwick (1800- 1890) demonstrated a close who in 1842 investigated sanitary
connection between disease and poor sanitqry conditions. Hence, it was clear that many conditions of the working class.
diseases depended on the conditions of living, which human beings experienced in society.
not because they had sinned and were being punished.

We distinguish microbes into four groups (i) bacteria (ii) virus (iii) protozoa (iv) fungi.
Figure 22.3 shows structure of various microbes as seen under microscopes. When a
patient's blood or spit or excreta are examined, and the microbe present is idmtified, the
disease of the patient is determined or diagnosed, and treatment can follow. In Table 22.2
we have listed some common diseases caused by different kinds of microbes and worms.

Here we have also listed diseases caused by worms. They enter the human body mainly
through unclean water or food, and sometimes by puncturing the skin. They live in the gut
and lay their eggs which comeout in faeces. Unhygienic conditions expose people to
diseases caused by worms. These worms cause loss of weight. abdominal pain and
occasional dysentery. After entering the body, they penetrate other organs of the body such
as the liver or the lungs. Millions upon millions of our people suffer from diseases caused
by worms. One child specialist said that almost 80% of her patients have worms.
Agriculture, Nutrition and

Fig. 22.3: Kinds of microbes and worms causing various diseases.

Tabk 223 :I n f a t h a LHaeaaa Csusd by Mkmbw

Bacteria Virus Rotozoa Fund Woni

Cholera Ch'kken pox Malaria Skin diseases T a p worm.

Hookworm. Pinworm
Conjunctivitis Common cold Amoebic Ring worm (disorders mainly
dysentery disease of the digestive
Dysentery Influenza
(bacillary) Sleeping
- Measles sick&; Guinea worm
Cerebro-spinal meningitis
Whooping cough

b l i c h of the following statements arc TrueFalse; indicate by putting T for true and F for
false in the given boxes.
i) If a clean person lives in a clean house, he will not catch infecfiots diseases.
ii) Diseases are caused due to fate of the inditiduals.
iii) Infectious diseases are caused by germs.
iv) vaqteeuwenhoek saw living germs from scrapings of his teeth after drinking
hot coffee.

22.4.2 &lierobes are Present Everywhere

You should know that invisible microbes are present everywhere, because they can survive
even under very inhospitable conditions. They are all around us, in the air we breathe, in the
soil, in food, ih water used for drinking or bathing and on all the objects we come in contact
with. You will be surprised to know that billions of them live on the skin of our body and in
our mouths and intestinal tracts. One third of the dry human faeces is bacteria. However,
only some of these micro-organisms cause infectious diseases. There are many others which
are beneficial and their activities are of central importance to the biosphere. Without them
life on earth would perish! Long before we even knew of their-existence, we have been
taking advantage of their activities, as in the case of making curds, and alcohol or baking
cakes and bread. They decompose dead plants and animals, as well as sewage into harmless
but indispensable chemicals like nitrogen, oxygen and carbon dioxide etc. They can also be
used as biological factories to produce antibiotics. In fact, the famous antibiotic, penicillin
was discovered from a culture of fungus. Certain kinds of bacteria live in human intestines
and provide vitamin B,,and vitamin K. Thus, though some microbes are harmful, athers are
of great service to humanity. While the knowledge of gems has grown and some of it is
used to save people from disease and death, several countries have used this knowledge for
destruction and warfare. You may have heard the word "geim warfare". These countries
have collected deadly gems which can be spread in enemy countries to pollute air or water
or even to destroy crops and forests. Such warfare, obviously, kills people, not just soldiers,
and as such it is internationally prohibited.

22.4.3 How do Microbes Enter Our Body?

You have learnt that microbes exist virtually everywhere, and hence our body is constantly
exposed to them. They gain access to our body through the natural openings like our mouth,
nose, urinary and reproductive passages (Fig. 22.4). This can happen while we breathe
contaminated air, drink impure water or eat infected or spoiled food; They reach our lips
when we touch them with gemcarrying fingers or finger nails, when we drink from glasses
or cups which have not been washed well or even while wiping the mouth with dirty and
used towels. We can get infected from other persons by contact while shaking hands, or
otherwise touching their body. Germs can enter our body through urinary and reproductive
passages during sexual activity.

Mouth /(
>& h 1
l n w t Bites

Fig. 22.4: How disease-eauaingorganismsenter the body. .

Our eyes get germs from infected air or dust. Each of these natural openings leads to a tube
which reaches other organs. Thus germs get into our body and infect our organs. The tubes
are lined with soft mucous membranes which can resist penetration only when a person is ih
a state of g d health. In case of common cold, the mucous membrane itself is attacked, and
g e n s sit and multiply on it.
Gems are invisible invaders and it is not easy to check their entry. The major physical
barrier to their entry is our skin. As mentioned earlier, a large number of them live on our
skin and most of them are harmless. Some germs do cause boils and pimples, invade roots of
hair and set up local infection. If the infection is not controlled it may spread deeper under
the skin. If the skin is cut or scraped off by injury. bacteria get under the skin. and the
Chiaka and Susruts of Ayurvcdic
wound becomes septic.
period gave vivid descriptionsof the Insects are also carriers of many disease germs. The blood-sucking insects on biting,
disease and associated it with the
bites of mosquitoes. In 1897 Ronald puncture the skin, and thus introduce germs into the body. For example, the female mosquito
Ross who was w h i n g on malaria at Anopheles injects germs of malaria; worms of filaria are also camed by a kind of
Sccunderabad (Andhrn Redesh) mosquitoes. Similarly, plague and sleeping sickness are caused by bites of fleas and a fly
confirmed that mosquitoes transmit
called the tse-tse, respectively. Many worms, such as hookworm can penetrate through the
skin and enter the blood stream. Eggs of pinworm enter through the mouth by contaminated
fingers or infected food or water. As'you know, the bite by a mad dog is almost always fatal.
This is because the dog cames germs causing rabies. Dirty and infected syringes used for
injections can also cause disease.
You may wonder how such tiny creatures can give all kinds of diseases. Their main strategy
is that they multiply in our body very fast. Every twenty minutes bacteria can reproduce by
division. In a few days, a single bacteria can produce millions of bacteria, thus, infecting
millions of cells at the site of infection.
Virus can only reproduce inside the living cells. After entering the body cell, it takes over
control and dimts the cell to make its copies. The numerous virus so formed are released in
the body, killing other cells.
'a) Which of the following statements are truelfalse; indicate by putting T for true and F for
falie in the given boxes.
j) Virus cqreproduce outside the living cell.
ii) Bacteria reproduce by fission.
iii) All-bacteria are harmful.
iv) Millions of bacteria live on our skin.
V) Malaria is caused due to a protozoa.
vi) Some bacteria help us produce useful materials.
b) Fill in the blanks
i) The major physical barrier to the entry of germs is our. ....................
ii) Mucous membrane can resist penetration of germs only when a person is. ........
iii) Germs can reach our mouth through .................. and. ..............

22.4.4 Body's Battle against Germs

You have learnt that many kinds of germs find their way to our body, then you must be
wondering why we do not fall sick more often. Lots of people are exposed to germs, but
only a few get sick. Does it mean that some people can put up a greater resistance to
First of all, the skin and the mucous membranes of our body help ys to keep out germs.
There are glands in the skin which produce oily substances to providk a protective cover to
the surface of the skin. Perspiration helps us to eliminate certain wastes and germs out of the
skin. Perspiration also contains a special chemical known as lysozyme which destroys
germs. Lysozyme is also found in tears. saliva, nasal secretion and tissue fluids. Many types
of germs which happen to reach our stomach are destroyed by strongly acidic stomach
The germs which gain entry into our body, reach our organs or survive in the stomach, take
nourishment from our body to multiply. Then they begin to destroy our M y cells and also
secrete toxic or poisonous substances. Unless their activity is checked they secrete enough
toxins to make us'feel sick. But more often they are overpowered by our body. You will be
surprised to know that our body has an elaborate defence system comparable to the defence
forces of a country. This defence system is called the "immune system" and it is spread
throughout the body as shown in Fig. 22.5. Defence force is in the form of special cells,
called White Blood Cells (W.B.C.) which circulate throughout the M y along with blood.
The W.B.C. are of various types and fight the invader in a variety of ways. During many
kinds of infection, an automatic increase in their total number is triggered. The number
might double.triple or quadruple depending upon the severity of infection. Therefore,
doctors determine the number of W.B.C. in blood by observing a drop.of it under the
When germs attack our body, special types of W.B.C. migrate to the infected site and
destroy the "invader*' germs by engulfing them. These cells are called "engulfing cells"
(Fig. 22.6a). Interestingly, when the fight is over, other type of W.B.C. are directed-lo move
to the site to remove dead germs and dead W.B.C. The pus that is generally present at the
site of infection contains a large number of dead cells and germs. Another kind of W.B.C.
produce a chemical weapon called "antibodies", which attack poisons or toxic substances to
make them ineffective (Fig. 22.6b). These antibodies also tag the invader so that it is easily
recognised by'the "engulfing cells" (Fig. 22.6~). Mg. 22.5: -Immune System". White
Blood Cells (W.B.C.)devclop in
Yet another type of W.B.C. work as killer cells and directly destroy the invader or the both the thymus and bone mamow.
infected body cell. Some W.B.C, which have for the first time encountered a specific 'Zhc newly formed WBC migrate
invader are held in reserve as "trained cells" which can work for subsequent encounters into the blood & spnad throughout
the body.
effectively. The whole body defence mechanism goes into action as soon as disease germs
enter the body and cause an alann signal to be generated.
Quite often, the body is effectively able to deal with the infection and all symptoms like
fever or inflammation subside by themselves. But at other times, medicine must be used to
supplement the body defence mechanism. After lots of research, medicines capable of
A g r b d b m N a d coping with a number of different infections have been found. It is best to consult a qualified
Haw doctor as soon as illness is discovered. Many a time people go to a doctor or a hospital when
the invading gems have already caused great damage to the body system.

Gcnn WBC.

(b) Neutdhtlon of T o h

$ 8
Tbxins Antibodies

(c) T a d d~erma


Fig.26.6: Different mechanisms by which White Blood Cells destroy the germs.

Now let us see how vaccination protects us from disease.
We have mentioned above that the W.B.Cs. produce antibodies which neutralise the toxins
produced by the invaders. These W.B.Cs. are of different kinds and each kind consists of
Edward Janerwas the first prmon millions of cells which recognise and combat a specific foreign invader. Once a class of
to dilcomMlllll POX in W.B.Cs. has encountered a particular kind of invader, it develops memory and is thus
17%. He tgted h i s vtxcine on his
own m. trained to ward off future attacks. In this way the body becomes "immune" to that infection
and the process is called immunisation.
Thus, our body regularly develops natural immunity as a variety of fighting cells are
produced by actual attacks of infectious agents. Artificial immunisation is a clever idea. It is
done through "vaccination", that is by artificial introduction into the body of a weak
infection, which triggers off a defence mechanism, and produces W.B.C. trained to combat
that particular infection.

Fill in the b U qmxs with appmp&e wadr.
i); W.B.C. destroy invdere either by. .................... or by pmducing
chemicalr known as .....................
which rmtralise ..................
ptuduood by the invader.
ii) Many dicurer rnoted by tanorilu or quack8 m acnully taken can of or cued by our
Ui) W.B.CI.wayinMoodu ..................... and .....................
thmuwt the body.
-iv) A paknr will p i n nand health if the invader is. ....................

vi) Vaccinathirrwryto ..................... our ..................... in

adwnce with a sample bf .....................
tmin, M y , defeated, gurrda mguifing, d b o d i i , toxins, makenedcirculrte,
defescc sysmll. kin@.


Now that we have learnt that infectious diseases are caused by various microbes and some
worms, let us find out how they travel from one person to hother. There are various modes
of their travel, like through air, water, food. contact. insects and other carriers.
Air Borne Diseases
A number of diseases are caused due to bacteria and virus that are carried in the air. When
an infected person sneezes or coughs, there is a noticeable spray of drops. These tiny
droplets of liquid contain germs which can remain afloat in the air for a long period. If
another person is standing by, he is likely to breathe in quite a lot of such g e p s and thus get
infected (see Fig.22.7). One sick person can thus infect a lot of others. The common cold
virus is spread in this way. In Table 22.3 are given diseases that are spread in various ways.
As listed, leprosy is also spread in similar way. But it spreads only if the Victim remains very
close to the diseased person for a long period, and it takes very long time for the symptoms
to develop. These diseases spread easily in damp closed spaces.

Infected Human \

1 Ng. 22.7: Routes by which disuses are trausrnltted.

Agriculture, Nutrition and Water Borne Diseases
Diseases like cholera and typhoid, as well as diarrhoea and dysentery, are spread through
water. Germs of these diseases multiply in the gut of the infected person and come out in the
faeces (Fig. 22.8). Eggs of worms also come out in faeces (Fig.22.9).

Fig. 22.8: Water source is made unsafe to drink as a result of people urinating, defecating or simply
washing in it.

Fig. 22.9: Transmission of hookworm

If the infected faeces and urine are passed in an open field, as is unfortunately done in most
of our villages, germs or eggs may be carried to the source of local water supply, such as
ponds or'rivers. Bathing or washing of utensils in such water, or drinking it, can infect other
people. Sornetinies in slum areas, the latrines are too close to handpumps and thus drinking
water becomes a source of disease. It goes without saying that people who are obliged to
live in such areas, or wh;have inherited a life style of using fields for toilet, are the ones .
who suffer mob! from water borne sickness.
Health and Dlsense
'The other reason for the spread of.these diseases is negligence in personal hygiene by
infected persons. If the infected persons do not wash their hands carefully after defecation or
urination, the-handsare likely to cany some germs or eggs of worms which will be In ~ u l y1988, cholera epidemic
transferred to other objects like food, utensils or furniture. When these objects are touched o m m d in Delhi due to infect*
water from handpumps which were
by a healthy person, the germs find their way to him (Fig.22.7). not deep enough, so the.sumunding
source of infection, seeped into
Food Borne Diseases them.
If the food handler, like the cook, suffers from some infection and is not careful about
washing his hands after defecation, the germs or eggs of worms will reach the food and
people will get infected. Typhoid, bacillary dysentery and other stomach infections are.
spread in this way. Flies sitting on food always deposit germs there, which they pick up
while sitting on excreta or filth. Vegetables and fruits also get contaminated by night soil
which is used as fertiliser. Food, which is exposed to flies or even air for long hours is
likely to pick up bacteria which easily multiply in it. Such food gets "spoiled and could be
a potent source of disease. In its strongest form it is called food poisoning. The common
symptoms are abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting. and diarrhoea. Generally bacteria are
killed in heated food. but toxins produced by them are heat resistant.
Diseases Spread by Insects or Other Carriers
We know malaria is transmitted by the female Anopheles mosquitoes. Dengue fever and
filaria are also caused by mosquito's bite. These insects suck blood and also inject some of it
back into the body. Mosquitoes get the germs by sucking the blood of someone suffering
from the disease, and transmit them to others when they puncture their skin or '!bitemthem.
Houseflies are also caniers of germs of intestinal diseases. Simparly many fleas also spread
diseases. Rats are reservoir of many diseases. Innumerable. outbreaks of plague were caused
by them. Lice, ticks, cockroaches, etc. also carry germs of various diseases. Guinea worm
disease is quite common in India. The adult worm is about a metre long and it migrates from
the stomach to the leg and produces larvae which are released in water as shown in Fig 22.9.

Larvae swallowed by a Cyclop

Fig. 22.10: Transmission of guinea worm.

Table 22.3: Modes of spread of some common diseases.

Air infection Water Food Contact
- -
Diseases of respiratory Gastrointestinal Typhoid Syphilis
system infecticn
Common cold Bacterial cholera Bacillary dysentery Gonorrhea
Measles Typhoid Tape worm
Whooping cough Dysenteries

.Leprosy Diarrhoea
Cerebrospinal Amoebic dysenery
Meningitis Round worm dysentery
Chicken pox Guinea worn

Write the mode of spud of fdbwing diseases

Chickell pox I

Now that we know that infectious diseases are caused by microbes, it should be possible to
prevent diseases by controlling their transmission and properly treating them.

22.6.1 Prevention in Ancient Times

Let us begin this section by analysing some of the practices adopted in ancient India which
could minimise infections. They were, for example, washing of hands before and after
meals, daily bathing, not carrying footwear into living rooms, denial of permission to enter
place where food is cooked, especially for persons who have not had a bath. These practices
myst have evolved through observation. over a long period, that certain practices helped in
preventing diseases. Isolation of mother and the new-born, soon after delivery, was a
common custom which also helped in preventing infection of the mother and the baby.
Many of these laws of personal hygiene were codified by Manu.
Excavation of Mohenjo-daro and Harappa have revealed the existence of a covered drainage
system and water supply. House drains emptied all waste water into the street drains. They
also had arrangements for proper sanitation. Similarly, ancient civilhations of Egypt, Greece
and China had medical systems. Egyptians had arrangements for public baths and under-
ground drainage. The use of mosquito nets and association of plague with rats were known
to them. Hippocrates, the mDst illustrious Greek physician of the 5th century B.C. examined
significance of climate, w&er, clothing, eating and drinking to health. He was truly a man
concerned with hygiene. The ancient Indian and Chinese system of medical care knew about
immunisation also. Inoculation with live small pox germs to prevent small pox was known
to them.

22.6.2 Modern Concept of Preventive Medicine

Now let us see how the current concept of preventive medicine came into being. The story
began only 150 years ago.
People returning from a trip to USA, Europe or Japan undoubtedly are very fascinated and
narrate modem technological advances. Another aspect they often remark on is the
cleanliness observed in their cities. Would you believe that a person who throws garbage
outside the house or on the road or even on the highway has to pay a heavy fine? Were these
nations as clean as they are today? No, in fact, about 150 years ago, after the Industrial
Revolution, working class people of western countries lived in extremely filthy conditions.
Piles of refuse in front of houses, lack of sewerage, slaughter houses full of flies, etc. were
similar to what we witness in the d d crowded areas of Indian cities and in most of our
villages today.
Till then, the western people did not know that filth was the greatest enemy of their health.
During the Industrial Revolution in Europe, a close connection between disease and sanitary
conditions was demonstrated. At that time as.many as 30 families shared one lavatory.
Outbreak of epidemic diseases like cholera was very common. It was observed that
labourers suffered a far higher incidence of disease than the middle and upper classes. As a H d t h and Dbrrc
result of these findings, the concept of state accepting responsibility of people's health
appeared, and state health laws were made and enforced by the police. A major epidemic of
cholera occurred in 1832 in England. Then the sanitary cpnditions of the working class were
investigated. It led to the belief that cholera and other diseases arose from the stinking gases
that accompanied decaying animal matter. Water was found to have a role in the
transmission of disease.
In 1848. England promulgated its Public Health Act, which defined the role of the state in In England "filW was as
!. peoples' health and led to a great awareness about sanitary matters. In 1875, the Public man's gnatcst enemy in 1842. ASa
result an anti-filth crusede known as
Health Act defined the steps for a clean environment and for clean water. Other European ..theh,-tary awalrening-
countries and America followed suit. Steps were taken to ensure clean water, smundings, began.
houses and for control of offensive trades, such as carrying of garbage or excreta.
In this way, the spread of many diseases was controlled to a great extent. Clearing away
decaying matter and dirt, removing breeding grounds for microbes which foul the air were
taken bp. However, these measures cdi~ldnot bring effective control of epidemics in urban
areas. While these environmental measures were promoting health of the people, specific
measures to prevent disease in an individual or in the community were atso being attempted.
By now, microbes causing various diseases were also identified. You have learnt about their
discovery in the previous sections.
In the fdlowingseetion we* discuss environmental controls nscessary for the prevention
of &eases.

Answer the follo\wing auestinnc hiiefly.
Give two examples of how people in ancient India took -vent diseases.

ii) Give masons for prevalence of diseases among labourers, during the Industrial

iii) Why were diseases Controlled by clearing away filth?

22.6.D Control of Environment

Control of environment is essential for maintaining good health. Environmental factors
which are basic to individual and community health are housing, water supply, unpolluted
air, and sanitation. Control of selling of exposed food is also a factor. In our country. due to
limited means, many of us have little choice in matters like, where we live, the kind of water
we drink and the surroundings we have to put up with, either at home, in the place of work
or at public places. Often. these are not proper for healthy living. Moreover, most people
lack suitable knowledge about health or sanitary habits, and there are many unhealthy social
taboos. All this is due to poverty and ignorance, in particular lack of adequate health
education. The health status of an average Indian is very poor. Unfortunately, not many of
us care to complain to the authorities against the filth around our houscs, on the roads, or in
public places. Social action in this regard is also lacking.

Housing is an important component of healthy environment. Probably you are aware that
housing conditions for the vast majority of people in India are not up to the standard for a
healthy living. Villages have hardly any lavatories, and drainage being poor, they are
sakounded by pools of uncleangenn-infected water. As more and more people move to the
Agrleultun, Nutrltlon and cities, the problem of housing becomes acute and a large.percentageof people live in slums
Hulth or on the street without shelter. Poor housing by itself does not cause disease, but it does
contribute to spread of infections and ill health. A house should be sunny and well ventilated
to ensure gentle movement of fresh air throughout the area. Proper ventilation reduces the
concentration of micro-organisms to a safe level. Communicable diseases, such as lung
infections, diphtheria, whooping cough and tuberculosis are often associated with poor
housing. In closed rooms, the concentration of micro-organisms builds up rapidly and thus
the risk of the spread of infection increases. ~ a m ~ n eand
s s moisture also help in the spread
of these diseases. A house should be kept free of pests such as rats, mice, cockroaches, ants,
houseflies and mosquitoes because they are carriers of harmful germs.
We all know that safe drinking water is essential for good health. Many of the diseases in
our country are due to lack of supply of safe drinking water. ~nfortunatel~~ only 18% of the
population in rural area gets reasonably safe drinking water. The vast majority of our rural
and urban population depends upon surface water, i.e. water from rivers, streams, reservoirs,
lakes, tanks and ponds, which generally get their water from rain. Although rain water is the
purest water in nature, it becomes impure as it passes through the atmosphere or fl,ows on
the ground. It gets contaminated with dust, soot, gases and micro:organisms. Therefore,
surface water possesses all this contamination plus additional contamination due to human
activity, such as bathing, washing clothes and utensils, or washing after passing stools. The
'water obtained from wells or tube wells, springs or handpumps is generally superior to
surface water, because this water is filtered through the ground itself and is free of
contamination, unless of course the handpump is not deep enough or is too close to e source
of infection.
Earlier, you have learnt the names of the diseases which are spread through contaminated
water. Disease rates are directly related to the quality of water supply. It has been shown that
with the improvement of water supply in some of the States in India, disease rates have bee"
drastically lowered.
Drinking water must be free of disease-causing agents or harmful chemicals. Human activity
pollutes water supply through negligence in disposing faecal matter, sewage, industrial
waste, fertilisers, pesticides and radio-active wastes. In urban areas only a small proportion
of our population enjoys the fac 3ty of sewerage system. Over 70% of the people living in,
rural areas defecate in the open fie% leading to great hazards in spreading various bacterial
diseases. Proper disposal of huma;. excreta is an essential quirement of community health.
At home, drinking water can be made safe by filtration and boiling. Filtration removes most
of the suspended impyrities. Disease-causing microbes are killed by boiling.

Air is essential for life. Hence pollution of air is detrimental for health. Respiratory
problems like chronic bronchitis and lung cancer are associated with increased air pollution.
The most common pollution of air in India is by dust and smoke. In the evenings, you would.
find little Indian villages completely enveloped and hidden from view by a cloud of dust and
smoke. The air in large cities like Delhi, Calcutta or Bombay is polluted with exhaust fiom
scooters, motor cars/trucks: You would be surprised to know that a power station like Indra
Prastha Power Station in Delhi, throws out about eight tons of ash from its chimneys
Air po,lu,tion can be controlled by prevention of escape of toxic substances into the

I environment from industries, motor cars or spraying of pesticides. Air c& be disinfected'by.
mechanical means, ultraviolet radiation. chemical vapour or special filters for air coming
into rooms.
,In residential places and offices, ventilation helps to replace polluted air. The quality of
incoming air with regard to temperature, humidity and purity is also an integral part of
ventilation, which ultimately provides an environment for comfort and is free from the risk
of infection. We know that green plants purify air. Green belt area should be increased in
big cities as they enhance the self cleaning power of the environment. A practice for
i growing green plants around the house is good for health.

High doses of radiation are very harmful for human health. Do you know about the disaster
ceated by the first atomic bombs which were exploded on two cities of Japan, Hiroshima
68 and Nagasaki in 1945?They killed thousands of people and injured many more badly. The
effects of exposure to intense radiation took years to appear as burns or cancer in human Health and ise ease
beings. After a couple of decades, the effect on babies born to mothers who were exposed to
big doses of radiation, began to show up.

Radiation is an important component of man's environment. We receive some radioactivity

all the time from cosmic rays, from terrestrial and atmospheric environment and also from
trace amounts of radioactive potassium, strontium and carbon present in the tissues of the
body. At altitudes above 20 km, cosmic radiation is much stronger. Although, we do not find
any immediate ill effects of this natural radiation on our health, one cannot be sure that they
do not have long term effects.

Then there are man-made sources of radiation in modern era which have become an
indispensable component of our life. Diagnostic medical and dental x-rays affect patients,
doctors and technicians. T.V. sets, radioactive dial watches and luminous markers etc. add
small amounts of radiation to man's environment, while nuclear power plant waste, if not
disposed of properly, is a great risk to human health. Major hazards of radiation are testing
of atomic and nuclear bombs.

Radiation, like x-rays, gamma rays, alpha and beta particles penetrate the body tissues and
injure them. The extent of damage is related to the total dose of exposure. Higher doses
affect immediately and are fatal. They affect the blood cells and soften the muscles. Acute
radiation sickness is a well defined disease. Somewhat lower doses show delayed effects.
They cause some cells to divide more rapidly than usual. 'Ibis leads to various forms of
cancer like Leukaemia or other malignant tumors. Unfortunately, some of the damages are
not recognisable within the life span of the exposed person, these will become manifest in
the coming generations.

Other factors
We must mention some other environmental factors which also affect our health.

t Altitudes: Exposure to high altitude causes acute mountain sickness characterised by

headaches, insomnia, breathlessness, nausea, vomiting and impaired vision. Acute
pulmonary oedema at high altitude is a serious condition and is observed above 4,000
metres. In this, the patient develops cough, irregular breathing, mental confusion,
hallucinations, and even coma.

I We know that temperature varies during a day, over the seasons, and in various places. It
depends on altitude. It is affected by the direction of wind and closeness to sea. However,
heat gained by the body should be equal to the amount of heat lost by it. Too high or too
low temperature causes not only discomfort, but human beings suffer from many disorders
I as a result of heat stress. Some of the effects of heat on human body are heat stroke or high
fever caused by heat, heat exhaustion, heat cramps. On the other hand severe exposure to
cold results in trench foot or frost bite. Rapid cooling of the body. i.e. chilling reduces the
body's resistance to disease organisms. That is why people catch cold through sitting in

Excessive noise not only causes annoyance and mental stress but can also result in auditory
iefects like deafness, interference with speech and adverse physiological changes

i) Ljst the diseases which are spread due to poor housing.

ii) How does cholera spread by defecation in an open field?

~ g r i d t u r eNutrition
, and iii) Write about some effects of radiation on our health.


Health status of the people is determined to a large extent by h e social, political and
economic forces existing in the country. Let us briefly hscuss the health system in India
from the ancient times to the present.

In Indus Valley period, the standards of environmental sanitation were very high. The city
of Mohenjo-daro of 5,000 years ago had publlc health facilities. Almost all households had
bathrooms, latrines, water closets and carefully built wells. Although, it is difficult to
imagine the nature of health problems they faced, the evidence surely indicates their great
concern and emphasis on preventive and promotive aspects of health care.

As you have learnt in Unit 3, during the Vedic period, m d c i n e took a momentous step
from "magico-religious" approach to a rational way of dealing with the subject. People in
those times understood that interaction between body and environment matter determines
Qseased or a healthy body.

s exactly what we understand about disease in the present time i.e. disease results
T h ~ is
from a complicated interactions between man and his environment. Therefore, we ~bserve
that there was more emphasis on environment. l%s tradition of preventive aspect of health
continued during the golden age of India.

During the period of decline of Indian science, the growth of our indigenous m d c a l
system also almost ceased. During the colonial period, there was complete disruption in the
way of life. Health practices, which we had developed over centuries, were adversely
affected. Now m d c i n e was left in the hands of incompetent people. So, the very scientific
basis of our ancient medical system was totally eroded. Besides, colonial exploitation
increased poverty and created environmental conditions detrimental to health. As a result,
the incidence of diseases increased. The western system of medicine, which had evolved
only a few centuries earlier, was denied to our people because it catered to the needs of a
small number who had money and lived in cities. The effort of western drug manufacturers
to sell their gmds exclusively in the Indian market created an atmosphere of distrust among
educated people of the InQan systems of medicine.

At the time of independence, a number of communicable diseases vlz. smallpox, malaria,

cholera etc. and malnutrition were prevalent throughout the country. Therefore, the
government framed various policies, National Health Programmes and the timetable for
achieving certain targets for improving the health status of the people. The Planning
Commission was established in 1950 and from then on started the phase of health planning.
The vital role of science in India is to There was rapid expansion of health infrastructure. Pnmary health centres were established
fight ignorance, poverty and disease,
and function as a powerful instrument
throughout the country. The focus was on free medical services to all. Since then efforts
to bring about a social transformation, have been made to tackle several areas related to health such as Population Control, Family
so that millions could live longer and Welfare, Maternal and Child Health, Rural Health, Health Education, Health Man Power,
happy life. Control of Communicable and Non-Communicable diseases, Nutrition and Community
Jawaharlal Nehru
1947 Scrence Congress
Health. The 1997 update on the heath scenano of the country is given in tables 22.4 and
22.5. Some of the programmes have been partially successful but are no where near the

Table 22.4: Statistics Showing S t a b of Population, Birth Rate. Death Rate, Growth Rate and Life
Expectancy in India since Independence.(Source: Prof. Harcharan Shgh, 1997: Paper presented at Silver
Jubilee Conference of Indian Association of Preventive and Social Medicine held at Gandhi Medical
College, Bhopal)

Year Population Birth Rate Death Rate Growth Rate Life Expectancy
(million) ( w r 1000) . . (per 1000) (Percent) (inyears) .
1947 340.5 40.0 27.0 1.3 2.7
1971 548.2
- 41.2 19.0 2.22 50
1997 960.0 28.3 09.0 1.73 62 -
The population has doubled ~njust 32 years from 480 million in 1965 to 960 million in
1997. In comparison to deqth rate which has come down to 9.0 per thousand population, the
present birth rate has come down to about 28.3 per thousand of the population.
Therefore, the annual growth rate, which was 1.3% in 1947 has increased to 1.73% (Table
22.4). India's population is projected in 2001 a billion plus and it may become the most
populated country, even more than China, in the world. It is so frightening. Unfortunately,
most of the programmes launched for family planning did not make any headway at the
grass root level.

In the area of Maternal and Child Health (MCH) services, the infant mortality has been
reduced to 74 and maternal mortality to four per thousand live births respectively. Thls
success rate is far behind when compared with western world. The Government of India has
launched special health programme to improve the quality of MCH care.

The communicable dseases continue to be the major health problems in our country. Only
a partial succcss has been achieved in their control since independence. We have witnessed
resurgence of malaria in mid seventies and again in 1994. In addtion just in a period of a
decade, the HlV infection has spread in all parts of the country. Almost the whole world is
gripped by AZDS and the disease is spreadmg rapidly. T h ~ disease
s may dilute or even erase
most of the efforts made to improve social and biological health of various communities
particularly in developing countries.

Table 22.5 : Status of Infectious Diseases Since Independence. (source: Prof. Harcharan
Singh, 1997: Paper presented at Silver Jubllee Conference of Indian Association of Preventive and Social
Medicine held at Gandhi Medical College, Bhopal)

Year Malaria TB Prevalence Leprosy Per Cholera Small Pox Diarrhoeal HIV
1947 100 NA NA NA NA
1951 75 2 NA 1,76,307 1,57,487 (1950) NA NIL
1961 2(1958) 2 NA 14,167 1,68,216 NA NIL
0.1 (1958)
1971 5(1975) 2 58 4 17,140 1,436 NA NIL
6.4 (1958)
(1 976)
I 1981 17 2 38.6 8,717 NII, 12 3 NIL
(1986) (1984) (1985)
1991 1.81 2 19 5 7,088 NIL 9.9 5,588
9 74 (1993)
L 1997 2.8 1'3 (1994) 20,800 NIL 8.0 6,600
5 --

It must be realised that spread of commurucable diseases is closely linked with

environmental sanitation. More than 70% of tfie population lives in villages. Even the safe
dnnIung water is nd available in rural and in many urban areas.

The National Health programmes could not reach the desirable targets because more
attcntion was paid to the cure of diseases than to their prevention. In other words, a
i "curative approach" based on western models was adopted to solve our health problems.
Most of our health institutions remain predominantly curative in character and there has
been neglect in preventive and promotive aspects of health care. These have proved to be
I inappropriate for the needs of our rural people. The established hospitals, well equipped
i with sophisticated equipment, have served largely to the upper crust of society rcsiding in
i! urban areas. We can see from health manpower statistics that there has been a sigmficant
increase in the number of medical and para-medical staff. In 1997, there were 4,89,189
I doctors, 19,525 dentists and 5,59,896 nurses registered in the country. At the time o f independence the doctor
i population and nurse population ratio was
1 According to 1991 census, our total population was 846 million, out of whch 218 mllion 1 :7, 165 and 1 :2,4340 respectively. In spite
, (25.6%) lived in urban arcas and 629 million (74.4%) lived in rural areas. However, the
of such a large ingease In population the
doctor population and nurse population ratio
number of hospitals, dspensaries and their bed capacity in urban and rural India is far from in 1997was l : l , 962 and 1:1.714
satisfactory (Table 22.6). From these data we can calculate that 79% of the hospitals and respectively.
86% of the beds are in the urban areas.
Agriculture, Nutrition and Table 22.6 : Medical Care Statistics in Rural and Urban sector (Source :Ninth Plan document, mimieo).
Total 1 Urban I
Hospitals , 13692 9382 ] 4310
16.323 . 11.080
-Dispensaries 27.403

In spite of great increase in number, doctors are largely urban based, and poor rural people
who stand most in need, are deprived of them. Most villages do not have potable drinlung
water supply or basic sanitation.

The integrated rural health services developed after Independence through Health
Centres (PHCs), form the institutional core of the national health services. The role of
PHCs is to deliver comprehensive health care to population. By 1997,there were 21,889
PHCs and 1,33,498 sub-centres run by doctors along with accessory para-medlcal staff such
as nurses, multi- purpose workers, health assistants, h s , etc. It was envisaged that such a
large network of PHCs spread throughout the country would be essential to acheve "Health
for All" as targeted after Alma Ata Declaration.

Table 22.7 shows health status of urban and rural India based on mortality indicators. These
results reflect inadequacy in the functioning of the health service.

Fig. 22.7: Statistics Showing Status of Health in Rural and Urban India (values per thousand of population).
(Source: Ninth Plan document mimieo).

-@!a1 Urban Rural

28.3 22.7 30.0
Death rate 9.0 6.6
8.0 48

In most states, there is virtual collapse of health mfrastructure. Health services are not free
as they were aimed to be. Most people are forcefully drawn toward private medical care,
which turns out to be very expensive for them.

The various health programmes have largely failed to obtain the participation by
individuals and the families, which is necessary for establishing a self-reliant community in '

rural area. Instead, they have tended to enhance the dependency on "curative centres",
i.e., hospitals and dispensaries. The working of our institutio~lsfor education, training and
research, and established hospitals is such that we are heavily dependent on western
countries for books, equipment, medicines, and even ~deas.
The tenn Indian Systems of Medicine
covers boththe systems. whlch
originated in India and outside but were It is very unfortunate that all along this period our indigenous medical systems were totally
adopted in India m course of time. ignored. Had these been encouraged along with modem systems of medicine the health
These systems are Ayurveda, Siddha, status of our nation would have improved. In March 1995, the Government of India created
Unani, Homeopathy, Yoga and
Naturopathy. These systems have
a new Dept. of Indian systems of Medicine and Homeopathy (ISM and H).
become a part of the culture and
trAtlons of our country. In order to involve the community to solve its own health problems, a "multi-disciplinary"
approach was also adopted. This tequired a joint effort of biomedical and social scientists.
However, many of the social scientists also presume that western practices are "modern,
good, and desirable", and they should be adopted.

In fact, a inore comprehensive social scienses approach to health services in rural areas is
reqtured. It is pecessary to know how exactly people perceive their health problems. What
do these problems mean to them socially and culturally? The programmes and delivery of
health services should be such that they blend with the existing culture of the community.
The western, the ayurvedic, unani, and homeopathic practitioners should all be h t t e d into
teams serving the medical needs of all citizens whether they live in cities or villages. Thus,
we have to work and evolve our own models for health services, especially for rural India.
The model should be such that it should promote self-reliance in health in the community.
Priority should be given to water supply, sanitation and proper nutrition within the means of
the people.
a) ..Which of the following statements are truelfalse'?Indicate by putting letter T for true
and F for false in the given boxes.

i) The level of sanitation and health consciousness among people existing in India
today are in contrast to what it was during Indus Valley period.

ii) The health condition of Indians improved during colonial period due to
availability of modem drugs.

iii) "Curative based centres" have prwed inappropriate for the health needs of our
rural people.
iv) It is necessary to give away old traditional systems of medicine, such as ayurveda,
unani and homeopathy in order to improve health of our rural people.

v) The success of primary,health centres depends upon the participation of rural

community in the health prognmmes.

22.8 AIDS
You have learnt about infectious diseases. For centuries, death from infectious diseases
was common and whole populations were often affected. One of the remarkable
achievements of modem civilisation has been prevention and control of the infectious
dlseases of the past. However, we still seem defenceless against the rapid spread of AIDS,
a deadly infectious disease of the century. AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency
Syndrome. It is caused by Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). Currently there is no
cure or preventive vaccine for it.

The first case of AIDS was reported in the USA in 1981. However, it has now become a
In India by the end of 1996, a total of
ltruly global epidemic with an estimated 22.6 million infected people. AIDS is reported 2.93 million individuals practicing
from most of the regions of the world. It is prevalent in South America, Sub-Saharan risk behaviors who were screened for
Africa, Caribbean, Southeast Asia, Central Asia-and parts of Europe. In India just in a HIV, 4,99,527 were found to be sera-
period of decade, the HIV infection has spread in alI parts of the country. It is prevalent in positive.
all states with exception of Arunachal Pradesh. About 3,16 1 cases of AIDS were reported
in India by the end of 1996. The epidemiological data indicate that the prevalence of
infection continues to increase from urban to rural area.

AIDS is fatal because the virus specifically affects our immune system and disables it. In
section 22.4.4 you have learnt that our immune system is the defence force of the body and
if it is damaged the body would lose the ability to protect itself from infection caused by
bacteria, fungi, protozoa and viruses.

A D S virus severely damages the immune system and therefore the infected person is Viruses are among the simplest life
vulnerable to other infections. Usually these secondary infections (termed as opportunistic forms that survive as obligate
infections) cause death in AIDS patient For example, AIDS patients generally suffer from intracellular parasites. This means that
viruses cannot replicate and make more
tuberculosis, which is now most prevalent infection associated with HIV. of themselves once outside the host
cells. A virus particle consists of a
A key to controlling HIV infection is to understand the routes of its spread. molecule either of RNA or DNA that
store genetic ~nfonnation,enveloped by
a protein coat. In some viruses,
The following are the modes of HIV transmission including HIV there is an additional
envelop of membrane outside the
1. Sexual contact - Intimate unprotected sexual contact between man and woman protein coat
(heterosexual) or between man and man (homosexual), when In AIDS virus the information is coded
one of the partners is HJV infected. in R N A You may know that in most
2. Blood - Transmission from an HTV infected source to the bloodstream of organisms the genetic material is stored
urmfected person (transfusion of blood or blood products in DNA. Viruses, which contain RNA
instead of DNA for storing genetic
contaminated with HIV, use of needles and syringes stained with information, are called retroviruses.
HIV infected blood).
3. Vertical transmission - Transmission from infected mother to fetus during
pregnancy (perinatcil period), during birth or during breast-
Agriculture. Nutrition and AIDS 1s not a contagious disease, but due to ignorance, several prejudices about the disease
Health .
are created. AIDS victims are being isolated and are discriminated by individual and
society. You must remember that AIDS does not spread like many other air-borne or water-
borne infections. It is important that we understand certain facts about HIV.

ITIV is quite fragile in'the external environment and the virus dies quickly when exposed to
room temperature or light. It is quickly inactivated by contact with soap and water. It is
important to understand that it cannot be transmitted through air, water or vector or casual
contact like shaking hands, hugging, dry kissing, sharing eating utensils, sharing towels,
using same gadgets or toilet seat etc. Therefore living with victims of AIDS i.e., breathmg
the sama air or eating from same plate does not spread infection.

In an infected individual HIV is present in certain cells of the blood (macrophages) which
are probably the long term reservoirs of HIV since they are not killed by the virus. They
circulate in the blood and remain in the mucosal lining of the internal urogenital surface of
the vagina and penis, the lining of the anus, lungs and throat. Therefore, for the test, M V
can be isolated relatively easily from blood, semen and vaginal, cervical secretions
(including menstrual fluid). It passes through fluid containing HIV of infected person to
the susceptible cell (usually via blood stream) of the receiver. Blood and semen are the
most infectious fluids i.e. why injection drug user and unprotected sexual behavior are
greatest risk of HIV transmission. You must note that saliva, tears, perspiration, urine and
feces are completely or nearly completely free of live cells.
Other targets for HIV infection are oral cavity and the throat since these also have mucosal
lining. However, the efficiency or transmission through oral cavity is low.

The HIV infection cannot be detected in early stages because the infected person does not
show any sign of illness right away and appears a healthy normal individual. The infection
remains latent for 5 to 10 years. The set of symptoms of AIDS appear later. Nevertheless,
such a person is carrier of infection and can transmit it to other person.

You have learnt that exposure to the virus occurs by sexual contact, blood or birth. Even if
exposure occurs by any of the above routes, this does not always result in transmission of
the virus. Only a fraction of exposed people is infected by HIV virus. However, most
infected people ultiinately develop some disease symptoms. These are the indirect result of
damage to the immune system by HIV. .As mentioned earlier that most people infected
with HIV never show symptoms at the time of initial infection. This period is called '
asymptomatic period. Some people may develop relatively mild disease symptoms such'
as swollen lymph glands, sore throat, fever, headache and s h n rash. However, these are
not specific to HIV Infection only and appear in many other viral infections. Therefore,
HIV infection cannot be diagnosed by such symptoms. Instead, HIV antibody test is
performed to detect the virus. However, this test is not foolproof.

Initial Symptoms

1) persistent swelling of the lymph gland ( Lymphadenopathy syndrome)

ii) loss of body weight (Wasting syndrome)
iii) neurological disorders - damage to brain cells, loss of mental functions
(Dementias), damage of spinal cord, peripheral nerve damage

Early Immune Failure - .-

i) Shingles (Varicella) - painful rash condtion that often occurs on the torso.
. Candida - The fungus forms white plaques in the mouth and harms other mucosal
Hairy leukoplakia - White plaques appear due to the abnormal growth of papillae
cells of the tongue.

Opportunistic Infections

1) TI3
ii) Pneumonia
iii) Fugal Infections
iv) Protozoan infection (gastroenteritis)
v) Viral Infection -.
vi) Bacterial Infection (TB like) A New York based orphan .
vii) Cancer project estimated that nearly 1
viii) Tumors of the blood vessels (Kaposi's Sarcoma) million children under 14 years
of age have been orphaned by
ix) Lymphomas AIDS in Kenya, Rwanda,

X) Cervical cancer Uganda and Zambia which may

rise to 2 million by the year
Initially AIDS was restricted to only a certain group of people termed as high risk groups 2000.
such as commercial sex workers, truck dnvers and injecting drug users, which routinely
indulge in activities that could be termed as hi& risk behaviors. But it has now spread to Scientists are trying tp find ways
to cure AIDS. So far, there is no
other strata of society infecting people not associated with high risk behavior, particularly vaccine against it. A
women who are in a faithful monogamous relationship. Although a decade ago women and combination regimen of three
chddren seemed to be at the periphery of the epidemic, they are now the centre of concern. drugs - Zidowdine (AZT), 3TC
The age group between 15-49 years is most affected. About 89% of all cases are from th~s and protease inhibitors (Norvir,
Saquinavir, Indianavir) has been
age group and these are productive and reproductive segments of the society. They are the tried that bring down the viral
supporters for younger and older generation. It is likely that the children of AIDS victims load in the system. These drugs
would become street children. No other disease affects marital harmony, human rights, are extremely costly, and thus are
employment security and family economy of those affected as does AIDS. not really a viable option for
most people in developing
countries. Besides, it is not
Although the disease is not contagious but due to ignorance about mode of transmission the certain whether low levels of
AIDS victims are discriminated. The disease has social and economic implications also. In virus will be maintained when
order to control the rapid spread of the disease it is necessary that we educate ourselves and the drugs treatment i s withdrawn.
also raise public awareness about HIV infection. Gene therapy and other special
chemicals are being investigated
to combat the virus.


AIDS in an adult is defined as who has:

a. Tested positively for HIV antibody detected by two separate tests using two
Merent antigens,
Any one of the following criterion:

1 (a) Weight loss of > 10%body weight or cachexia.

(b) Chronic diarrhoea of > one month duration, chronic cough for one month
> 1 month duration.
2. Disseminated, miliary or extra-pulmonary tuberculosis.
3. Neurological impairment restricting daily activities.
4. Candidiasis of the oesophagus diagnosable.
Dysphagia (odynophaga) along with oral candidiass.
5. Kaposi's sarcoma.

Clixiical stage progression:

Stage I HIV infection - asymptomatic

Stage I1 HIV-related diseases - symotomatic
Pulmonary tuberculosis
Stage I11 Advanced HIVIAIDS

(Spurce : Annual Report National AIDS Control Organisation, Ministry of Health and family welfare.
Government of India, Dec., 1996)

Test for AIDS - HIV Antibody Test

To see if an individual has been exposed to HIV, his serum is tested for antibodies to
HIV virus proteins.
The presence of HIV specific proteins indicates he is infected. There are potential
problems with the HIV antibody test because about 0.1% individuals who are not HIV
mfected show the test antibody positive.
Agriculture, Nutrition and '
SAQ 10
Health 111 the following statenients choose the correct altcrnative word given in the
i) A D S is caused by a (virushacteria).
ii) It is transmitted vla (sexual contact/blood/airdroplets)
iii) The vinis specifically disables (nemous/immune) system.
iv) hIV (canJcmot) survive outside the body.

b) Indicate whether the following statements are true or false? Write T for true and F for
false in the given boxes.

i) AIDS victim should be isolated in order to prevent further infection.

ii) A D S is a contagious disease, I

iii) Death of AIDS patient occurs due to secondary infections.

iv) AIDS patients suffer from fungal and bacterial diseases.

In t h s unit we have tried to show you how technological developments led to the unfolding
of mystery of disease and saved millions of lives. You have learnt that

Infectious diseases are caused due to various types of microbes.

Microbes present in the environment gain entry into the body via air, water and food
They multiply in the body and make the person sick. The sick person releases them in
greater number in the environment thus infecting many people.
Our body has a defence system which is capable of fighting against the genns. Modem
drugs assist ow defence system.
Disease results from a disturbance in the balance between man and his environment.
Improvement in the health status of our people requires clean drinking water, adequate
living conditions and proper sanitation.
Curatite approach of health care in India could acheve limited objectives. The
importance of Indian Systems of Medicine has been realised and these are being
encouraged. A comprehensive approach involving social, economic, psychological,
political and envirom~entalaspects is required to organise health care system for the
prevention of diseases in the rural areas.
The world is now faced with new deadly infectious, viral disease AIDS which has
become global epidemic The virus &sable the immune system in the body. As a
consequence the body becomes vulnerable to other infections. It is transmitted through
sexual contact, blood and from mother to foetus. The best way to escape the disease is
to restrict from actmities that are responsible for its transmission. So far no cure has
been found for this disease.

1) Write the causative microbe for the following diseases.

1 Diseases - Causative Microbe

i) Cholera

ii) Ring worm

I iii) /UDS

IV) Chicken pox

V) Malaria

vi) Conjunctivitis

vii) Guinea worm

2) Make a survey in your locality and find out which of the infectious dlseases were
preyalent during last six months. Tell us if the environmental factors were contributing
to the spread of these diseases.
.......... - ............................................................................................

3) Explain briefly how vaccination helps to resist diseases.


"" 22.11.ANSWERS, ,
Self Assessment Questions
1) i) properly, healthy ii) i n t e k c t d , emotional

2) a) i) F ii) T iii) F
b) Use Table 22.1 to check your answers.
. ,'
3) i) F ii) F iii) T iv) F

4) a) i) F ii) T iii) F iv) T v) T vi) 1

b) i) skin ii) healthy iii) food, water, germs carrying fingers.

i 5) i) engulfing, antibodies, toxins ii) defence system iii) guards, circulato iv) defeated
2ig4 v) killing vi)train, body, weakened.
6) i) air ii) water food house fly iii) air iv) air v) water vi) air vii) air viii) mosquitoes
7) i) a) Washmg of hands before and after meals.
b) Entering into the htchen only after bathing.
ii) During the Industrial Revolution the labourers were living in extremely filthy
condiuons. There was no sewerage system, piles of garbage collected in front of
houses and the slaughter houses were full of flies.
iii) Some of the diseases are caused due to bacteria which breed on filth. Clearing
away of filth removed the breeding grounds for bacteria and thus helped in control
of diseases.

8) i) Lung infection, whooping cough, diphtheria, tuberculosis etc.

ii) Cholera bacteria are passed with the faeces of an infected person. When the patient
defecates in an open field, the bacteria are carried by bare foot, rain water or by
other means to the nearest source of water supply. People get infeqed by drinking
this water.
iii) Radiation causes
a) Various forms of cancer like leukaemia and malignant tumors.
b) Injury to the body tissue.

9) a) i) T ii) F iii) T iv) F v) T

10) a) i) virus ii) sexual contact/blood iii) immune iv) cannot

b) i) false ii) false iii) true iv) true

Terminal Questions
1) i) Bacteria ii) Fungi iii) Virus iv) V i m v) Protozoa vi) Virus viii) Worm

2) Vaccination is a way'of acquiring immunity against an infection. A sample of a weak

or dead bacteria is introduced in the body to trigger defence system and produce
special WBCs that would encounter the bacteria. Such WBC develop a memory, and
are held in reserve as trained.cells, to ward off the future attack of the particular
Agricufture, N u t r i t h .nd

alpha and beta particles: harmful radiations emitted by radio active substances,
amino acid: the building blocks of protein molecules,
.anaemia: deficiency in the circulating haemoglobin or red blood cells,
antibody: a protein substance produced in an organism to counteract harmful organisms or
arid land: regions not having enough rainfall to support vegetation,
basal metabolism: energy expenditure of the body at rest in the postabsorptive state,
beriberi: a deficiency disease caused by lack of vitamin B and characterised by extreme
weakness. nervous disorders, edema, and cardiac failure,
bubonic plague: a higMy fatal bacterial disease of the blood, spread by the fleas and
respiratory secretions,
calorie: a unit of heat measurement; in nutrition, the kilocalorie is the amount of heat
required to raise the temperature of 1 kg of water 1°C.
congenital: existing at or before birth with reference to certain physical or mental traits,
critical irrigation: the essential requirement of water by a crop at a particular stage of its
growth, 1

enzyme: an organic compound of protein nature produced by living tissue to accelerate 1:

metabolic reactions,
epidemic: a rise in the number of cases of a disease in a population far above the level
normally expected,
essential amino acids: an amino acid that must be supplied in the diet to provide the body's
need for it,
gastroenteritis: inflammation of the digestive organs,
germplasm: the genetic material through which the hereditary materials are transmitted,
goitre: enlargement of the thyroid gland,
haernoglobin: the iron-protein pigment in the red blood cells; carries oxygen to the tissues,
hormone: substance produced by an organ to produce a specific effect in another organ,
kwashiorkor: deficiency disease related principally to protein lack and seen in severely
malnourished children; characterised by growth failure, edema, pigment changes in the skin,
limiting factor: a chemical or physical factor that determines whether an organism can
survive in a given ecosystem,
lysosyrne: a kind of digestive enzyme found in special structure of the cell called lysosome,
malignant: occuning in severe form frequently fatal; in tumors refers to uncontrollable
growth as in cancer,
rnarasrnus: extreme protein-calorie malnutrition marked by emaciation, especially severe in
young children who receive insufficient amounts of food,
malnutrition: general term for illnesses resulting from inadequate feeding. Usually due to
lack of one or more essential components of the diet,
nutrient: chemical substance in Foods which nourishes, e.g., amino acid, fat, calcium,
nutrition: the intake, digestion, absorption and effective use of food,
obesity: being overweight. Caused by accumulating fat to the point where health is likely to
be affected,
pellagra: a deficiency disease of the skin, gastro-intestinal tract, and nervous system caused
by lack of vitamins of B group,
protozoa: single-celled animals. Health and Disease

pulmonary oedema: presence of abnormal amount of fluid in the inter cellular spaces of the

rickets: a deficiency disease of the skeletal system caused by a lack of vitamin D or calcium
or both, and often resulting in bone deformities,
shelter beds: rows of trees and shrubs planted alongside field to reduce wind velocity and to
increase soil moisture.

1 A History of Agriculture in India, Volumes I to IV, M.S.Randhawa, I.c.A.R., 1980.
2 Fkds and Agriculture (M.S. Swaminathan and Movement of Self-reliance),
S. Ramanujam, E.A. Siddiq, V.L. Chopra, S.K. Sinha, Indian Society of Genetics and
Plant Breeding, I.A.R.I., 1980.
3 Finds and Integrated Rural Development, M.S. Swaminathan, Concept Publishing
Company, New Delhi, 1982.
4 Handbook of Food and Nutrition, M. S. Swaminathan, Abappco Publication.
5 Nutritive Value of Indian Foods, C . Gopalan, B.V. Rama Sastri and S.C.
Balasubranianian, National Institute of Nutrition, I.C.M.R., New Delhi.
6 New Guide to science, Isaac Asimov, Penguin, 1987.


Block 1 : =story of Science

Unit 1 Science as a Human Endeavour
/ '
Unit 2 Science in the Ancient World
Unit 3 Iron Age
Unit 4 The Golden Age of Science in India
Block 2 : Emergence of Modern Science
Unit 5 Science in the Medieval Times
Unit 6 Renaissance, the Industrial Revolution and After ,
Unit 7 Science in Colonial and Modem India
Unit 8 The Method of Science and the Nature of Scientific Knowledge
Block 3 : Universe and Life -The Beginning
Unit 9 Universe as a System
Unit 10 Exploring the Universe
Unit 11 Solar System
Unit 12 Origin and Evolution of Life
Unit 13 Evo[ution of Man
Block 4 : Environment and Resources
Unit 14 Ecosystem
Unit 15 Components of Environment
Unit 16 The Changing Environment
Unit 17 Natural Resources. .

Unit 18 Resource Utilisation, Planning and Management

Block 5 : Agriculture, Nutrition and Health
Unit 19 Food and Agriculture
Unit 20 Scientific Possibilities and Social Realities
Unit 21 Food h d Nutrition
Unit 22 Health and Disease
Block 6 : Information, ~ n b w l e d ~Insight
Unit 23 Mind and Body
Unit 24 Psychological Aspect of Behaviour .
Unit 25 Information and Communication
Unit 26 Modes of Communication
Block 7 : Science, Technology and Development

Unit 27 Science and Technology in Industry

Unit 28, ~ e c h h o l and
o~~ Economic Development
Unit 29 Modem Development in Science and Technology - I
. *
Unit 30 Modem Development in Science and Technology - I1
Block 8 : New Perspectives
Unit 3 1 Perceptions and Aspirations
Unit 32 Science -The Road to Development
AudioNideo Programmes
3 1 '

Audio : 1) Science and Society (Block 1)

2) Astronomical Development in India (Block 3)
3) . Measuring Astronomical Distances (Block 3)
4) Evolution of Man (Block 3)
5) The Forest Ecosystem (Block 4)
6) Population Pressure (Block 4)
7) Common Misconceptions about Health (Block 5)
8) Human Factors in Engineering (Block 6)
9) New Information Order (Block 6)
10) Technology and Self-Reliance (Block 7)
1 1) Nuclear Disarmament (Block 7)
Video : 1) Method of Science (Block 2)
2) A Window to the Universe (Block 3.)
3) The Story of a River (Block 4)
4) Green Revolution (Block 5)
5) Infectious Diseases (Block 5)
6) Jean Piaget Development sGges of a Child (Block 6)
7) INSAT (Block 6)
1I Structure
23.1 Introduction
23.2 Mind-Body Question
23.3 Functional Unit of the Nervous System-Neuron
23.4 Central Nervous System (CNS)
Spinal Cord
23.5 Peripheral Nervous System (PNS)
23.6 Hormonal System
23.7 Summary
23.8 Terminal Questions
23.9 Answers

Do you know that one of the most complex systems in the world lies within your own head?
Over centuries, the brain has been comptred to various man made machines. The most
recent, of course, is the computer. Though the activities of the computer are fast, they are
limited, in the sense that the computer works according to a programme given to it, by a
human being. No machine can rival the brain, with its billions of nerve cells intricately
connected so as to give it the ability to receive, store, recall and process informatiin and to
think new thoughts. Scientists are working very hard to create what may be called,
intelligent computers, but that is another story.
If we look through the history of human civilisation, the mind and its mental have
always been a fascinating and controversial subject among philosophers. Until fairly
recently, we did not know or understand much about the nature of the mind or its
relationship with bodify functions. There was controversy even regarding the relationship
between the mind which was considered spiritual, and the brain, which was thought to &.
In this Unit, we expose you to an elementary scientific description of the Mind-Body
relationship and to a physical description of the human nervous system and its working.
There is special emphasis on the brain which .is the seat of all thoughts we think and our
response to people, events and most importantly to ourselves. In addition, we will look a t d l
the other parts of the nervous system that cany messages to, and from the brain and the
spinal cord to the rest of the body.

Some other parts of our body that e important for understanding behaviour are certain
glands that put out chemicals calle hormones .which play a part in regulating body function.
What you study in this unit would provide a foundation for a further study in unit- 24, of
human behaviour and the development of the mind from infancy onwards.

After studying this unit you should be able to :
0 describe the structure and functionsof a nerve cell,
describe the general organisation and major parts of the human nervous system and its
identify the parts of the brain and describe how human senses, reactions and bodily
functions are associated with different parts of the brain,
recognise and define a flex reaction,
realise that hormones and the nervous system work closely together to coordinate the
internal functions of the b d y and also affect an individual's behaviour,
realise that this is a vast subiect and vour knowledee is oniv rudirnenk.
1 the Vedic times, in India, philosophers held the belief that man consisted of a r m (soul),
,anas (mind), indriyan (sense organs) and sarira (body). The sadra was taken to be the
nse for the indriyan which were located in its vqious parts. Manus was one of the 11
gans thought to be present in the body and, it was considered to be the organ for memory;
nowledge and feeling etc. The atma was capable of knowing, feeling and action but
~ithoutthe manas, indriyan and sarira, it could not function. In later times, Yoga and
Tantra came to view the brain and the nerves as the organs of the soul. The mind, however,
lad always been regarded as of great importance and all activities such as hearing, seeing,
'esiring and believing were assigned to it.
;y the 19th century, scientific explanations for the functions of the body were available,
,sed on concrete observations and experiments. Mental processes were seen to be linked to
.ivity in the brain. It was recognised that the mind cannot exist without the. body. Our
rception about the world, its sights, sounds and smells isentirely determined by our
isory system, i.e., the eyes, ears, nose, skin etc., and.the brain.
'ou can perhaps see that our description of ancient and philosophical views about the mind
d mental processes is too brief to do justice to the philosophers. But our purpose is not to
into details of what people have thought about mental processes in the course of
~usandsof years of human history. Our purpose is to give you, again briefly, what is
.cientifically known at present about the human mind and behaviour.
'he entire functioning of the human body is coordinated by the nervous system which
nsists of the brain, the spinal cord and the peripheral nerves. The working of the brain
nained a mystery for a long time. Even today, there is a good deal we do not know about
w the brain works, although a lot of information has been pieced together from observing
haviour of patients that suffer from diseases related to tumours or other physical defects in
brain. However, the properties of individual nerve cells that make up the brain and the
of the nervous system are well understood now. From these properties we can attempt to
lain the operations of the entire nervous system.
._-,.,,., ~lreulcalstudents to 23.3 FUNCTIONAL UNIT OF THE NERVOUS
dissect cadavers. The internal
systems of the human body thus SYSTEM - NEURON ---
'became known.
The human brain is composed of more than one hundred billion (100,000,000,000 or 1011)
cells called 'neurons'. This number which is comparable to the number of stars in the Milky
Way, gives us an idea about the size of the neurons also - because 10" of them fit in a
space which slightly more than a litre of water can occupy. Since these neurons are the
functional units of the whole nervous system, let us become familiar with some of their
basic features. You can see some typical neurons in Fig. 23.1.
Neurons can be categorised into the following kinds according to their functions :
a) Motor neurons : send signals from the nervous system to
muscles and glands.
b) Sensory neurons : carry signals from the receptor cells in sense
organs in the body to the nervous System.
For example, signals generated by touch or
smell or hearing etc.
c) lnter neurons or association neurons : process the sensory information received
from other neurons, and convey messages.
For example, when an insect bites, the
fingers are given a command to~cratchat
, that point. Most of the brain's neurons fall in
this category.
The neurons are specialised to carry iqformation from one part of the body to another. These
messages are referted to as nerve impulses. The nerve impulse occurs in response to some .
stimulus or event which excites them.
Notice in Fig. 23.1 that in every neuron, fhe portion of the cell with the nucleus is called the
roll hndv The thr~arlike e u t ~ n c i n n cn f rhe r ~ l that
l h r i n u c i n f n r r n a t i n n f r n r n n t h e r t v w c hf
v. mm. Puwsa, n.nm~wncupc, 3'Av 1
Insight Fill in the blanks with suitable words from those given below
i) In a neuron, ..................carries messages away from the cell body, while ....................
cames messages towards the cell body.
ii) The gap between the ends of an .................and the dendrite of the next cell is called a
111) ...................... take messages from sense organs to central nervous system.
iv) .....................take messages away from the central nervous systems to muscles and

v) Messages jumps from one nerve cell to another by means of .............=........

(glands, motor neurons, dendrite, synapse, sensory neurons, axon, neurotransmitters,
' axon)
You have studied the structure and functions of individual neurons. Let us now see how
these are organised in highly characteristic ways to form thenervous system in the body.


- ---
The nervous system can be di"ided into two major components :the central nervous system
(CNS for short) comprising the brain and the spinal cord, which you will be studying now
and.the peripheral nervous system (PNS for short) comprising individual nerves passing to
all parts of the body. These you will study in Section 23.5. The general organisation of the
nervous system can be seen in Fig. 23.3.

23.4.1 Brain
The centre piece of the nervous system is the brain which IS possibly the most organised
form of matter known. It is unlike any other organ of the body, as ~t alone can recelve,
handle and analyse information and issue necessary commands.

The human brain containing billions of neurons with their axons and dendrites, is soft matter
whlch has a folded appearance. Since the brain is a delicate organ, it is extremely well
PERIPHERAL protected by three tough membranes and floats In a special fluid which helps to absorb
shocks. The whole organ is then enclosed In a bony skull. (Flg. 23.4). The brain is very well
supplied with oxygen, whtch is carried by blood. In fact, 75% of the body requirement of
oxygen is used by the bra~n.Four ~nter-connectedarteries carry blood to the brain so that
even if two are blocked there are still two alternate passages. These four arteries are
connected to mill~onsof blood vessels called capillhries whlch reach every part of the brain.
If the flow of blood is interrupted for even 10 seconds, we become unconscious and an
interruption of a few minutes may cause permanent damage to the brain cells. These
damaged brain cells cannot be replaced as the number of neurons in the brain does not
increase after the age of five years. In fact, some neurons die every day. But, fortunately, we
have them in such large numbers that it does not make too much of a difference. This slow
but permanent loss of neurons is thought to be responsible for the loss of mental ability in
old age. Becausefhe loss of neurons is irreplaceable, diseases like poliomyelitis that destroy
neurons, lead to muscular disability, called paralysis as muscles connected to the destroyed
neurons do not receive any messages.

Even though the total number of neurons deerease, as ane grows older, the number of
connections amongst them in the brain increase. It is thought that learning involves the
establishment of new connections or circuits in the brain and once they are established, they
are relatively permanent. Persons with larger heads are not necessarily more intelligent, but
persons with more and complex interconnections are.
Fig. 23.3: Nervous system o f man
showing central nervous system and Let us now have a brief overview of the major regions and structures of the brain. It would
per~pheralnerves be best to read this section without trying to memonse all the new terms. You could refer
back to them as needed. The major regions of the brain are showo in Fig. 23.4 and Fig. 23.5.
These are forebrain, midbrain &d hindbrain. The forebrain itself has many parts which
we will now describe. .


Fig. 23.4: The human'braincut in the medial plhe showing its majy divisions. Fig. 23.5: Frontal view of brain showing the band of nerve
encased in the bony cranium and the spinal cord encased in the vertebral colunin. fibres connecting the two cerebral hemispheres.

The largest part of the brain that you see in Fig. 23.4 is the cerebrum. It consists of two
halves or hemispheres joined together by a band of nerve fibres (see Fig. 23.5). Interestingly
the crossing over of nerve fibres here causes the right half to control the actions.of the left
side of the body and vice versa. The outer surface of the cerebrum is the cerebral cortex. It
is often referred to as the 'grey matter' because of its colour. It is profusely supplied with
blood vessels.
The cortex was explored in a very fascinating way, particularly by a Canadian neuro-
surgeon, Wilder Penfield: Since 1900's it was known that the brain cpntained no pain
:ceptors and.henceit could be operated upon, without making the person unconscious: '
'ith local anesthesia, the top of the skull could be removed like a cap to expose the cortex.
Penfield did exactly this and he stimulated different parts of the cortex, one by one, by
~chingthem with an electric wire or probe. He was amazed to observe the reactions of the
dtients. On touching one part of the cortex with the probe, the patients could see, hear or
nell or feel! Patients could revive old memories. Some reported hearing the sound of a
articular song; one woman felt as if her daughter was in the room talking to her; another.
erson could actually recollect the smell of flowers! Stimulation of other regions caused
notor responses such as the movement of an a m or Ikg.
In Fig. 23.6, you see a sideview ofi the cerebral cortex where some functions associated with
specific portions have been shown.


Fig. 23.6: Sidev~ewof human cerebral cortex showing functions assignea to sevolal uoas.
for linguiscc abiliiy, mathematical and scientific p;4msolving drill.,
is responsible for artistic, musical, pcrcep:ual intuitive alnlities (
General1y analytical processes an assbt5at.d 86

'with the right hemispheres. In science both se-.

role. In executing a piece of art, dre left !ms to
cverall view and appreciation. So fhis division bf labour is nat rigid
that 0,p r ght and left half of the brain play a complementary rule in

Among other pattishawn in Fig-23.4 yoin will notice'the thalamus Whkb

for sensory signals on their way to the cecebrd cortex and ajsn for dgmS
it. The part below it catleo ~trehypo tho^
various functions of the body are in-balance an
optimum. For exampl~,it continuously monitors
of carbon dioxide phsent in the blood, the hypothaIamus reduces
rate. If your body temperature rises, it causes sweating to occur. I
and'also plsjs r major role in the control of sleep, sexual behaviouf nd
The midbrain is a small but important part of the brain. It receives inpug
organs, every part of the body and filters sensory information or deddes
should reach the concerned ngions of the brain. The midbmin plays,aiokia
and damage to it results in coma or permanent sleep.
Hindbrain $@
The hindbrain consists of the tor-ilun and brdn sten (refer Pig. 23.4). -4
like the cerebrum is divided into two halves and lies underneath the M d u

movements rather than jerky uncoordinated ones. Amxhcr function of

involves the maintenance of balance. Impulses from the eyes and b ~ r s
of your position in your surroundings. The caebellum Ehen sends mtwrpcg
are responsible for your posture to maintain balanca. You may not evm be
ceiebellum's fcnctions, as rrone of the activities it controls an volunw. 1#0111
portion of the b r i n tixat connects it to the spinal cord.The low
helps regulate respiration, blood pressure, vornitting and aher
damage to the ~ u l l a w u l easily
d lead to death.
... . .t. 4

lil t -
n ouii..., di ihe sidevie& of the human heod (Fin.
ceretrum, cerebellum. thaladcls, hypothalamus and midbrain
. 23.8): 'h,
'on; function of each of the, above stated parts of the brain,
Mid and BodJ

23.4.2 Spinal Cord

Ihe spinal cord extends downwards from the brain stem through the protecting bony rings
called vertebrae down the centre of the backbone, to the bottom of the back. Its core is
H-shaped in cross section (Fig. 23.9) and is composed of several kinds of neurons. The
s u m d i n g mattez is mostly long cables of axon fibres. The cord, too, is cwered like the
brain with thne membranes and contains fluid between the membranes.
'Ihman 3 1 pairs of spinal nerves, that branch off from the spinal cord throughout its
length, between the bones of the spine. These nerves carry sensory signals upto the brain and
motor signals down from the brain to various parts of the body.


Except for the brain and the spinal cord, the rest of the network of nerves and neurons is
I included in tha peripheral nervous system, or PNS for short. This system links the brain and
spinal cord to the rest of the body. Any message that is sent to the brain or from it to the rest
I of body, travels along the peripheral nerves. The PNS consists of 12 pairs of individual
nerves called cranial nerves, originating from the brain hence called cranical nerves (from
cranium, the skull) and the 31 pairs of spinal nerves that branch off from the spinal cord.
Each spinal nerve splits into three components soon after leaving the spinal cord. One-
branch passes to the skin and muscles of the front of the body; a second branch leads to the
skin and muscles of the back; the third branch reaches the internal organs.
The first two branches carry sensory information to the brain, and carry motor signals from
the brain to the muscles and glands. The third branch forms the "autowmicsystem" which
governs actions of the internal organs that are mostly involuntary. If you look at Fig. 23.3
r again, you would be able to appreciate the vast network of nerves that make up the
I peripheral nervous system.

1 23.5.1 Reflexes
It is of interest to +ow, that all sensory information does not have to go to the brain before
we can react to a stimulus. Our responses to certain stimuli are simpk;hnianed and quick.
For instance, if a finger is too close to a burning match, receptor cells on the skin send the
infarmation on a nerve to the spinal cord, and a 'reflex action' is taken to move the finger
away f m the fire. Such 'reflex drcuits' are well distributed and one is shown in Fig. 23.9.



23.% spinal w.and a r e f i x circuit. IN SKIN

IiVormation, Knowledge, Now let us see what happens when a pin pricks the finger.
1 The pin p-rick is the stimulus which activates a receptor cell at that point.
2 A nerve impulse is transmitted away from the skin along a sensory neuron to the spinal
3 The impulse is now passed through the inter neuron to the motor neuron and finally
passes to the-muscle which pulls the hand back from the painful event.

Part of a routine physical The brain is not normally involved in such simple reflex actions. Only after the event, is
examination involves testing a the brain informed and we become conscious of what has happened. The time gap
person's reflexes. The condition of between the stimulus and the response is about 1115th of a second and this is often
the nervous system, part~cularlythe crucial for survival. For instance, a person who is driving a car has to apply his brakes
functioning of the synapses, may be
determined by examining reflexes.
to avoid a sudden collision with another car. His reflex action timing is important if he (
In case of injury to some portion of has to avoid the accident. Similarly, the reflexes of an airplane pilot have to be fast to
the nervous system, testing certa~n avoid disaster. Human capacity to handle equipment and machines is limited by the
lrpflexes may indicate the locat~on time taken by one's reflexes.
and rrrtent of the injury. Also, an
anesthesiologist may try to iflitlate Simple reflexes have these important qualities:
a reflex to ascertain the effect of an they are inherited and not learnt. Therefore, not forgotten,
they are not normally under our control, therefore, they are automatic, though some
reflexes can be controlled by will power,
for any given stimulus the response is always the same.
Put the following in correct order for a simple reflex circuit. lndicate this order by putting 1
2,... etc., in the boxes given against each statement. We have done one for you as all
a) message travels through motor neuron n
b) message travels through sensory neuron n
c) muscle is stimulated to contract n
d) receptor cell or organ is stimulated
e) message travels through inter neuron

23.5.2 Autonomic System

The autonomic nervous system gets its name from the fact that it relates to autonomous*or
self-regulatory activities such as digestion and circulation, which continue even when we are
asleep or unconscious. Impulses from the brain and spinal cord travelling along the
autonomic nerves, cause blood vessels to dilatwr contract, digestion to slow or speed up,
body temperature to rise or fall, all according to the changing requirements. The autonomic
system consists of two sets of nerves:
The sympathetic nerves which stimulate the body to react in a situation of stress or
danger by increasing the blood pressure, heart beat rate, breathing and flow of blood to
the muscles, and by decreasing the flow of blood to the digestive organs and kidneys. All
these reactions are a preparation for a sudden expenditure of energy in either fighting or
The parasympathetic nerves which prepare the body for relaxed functions. The
autonomic nervous system does, however, interact with conscious nervous activity. For
example, it is well known that anxiety and mental tension can affect digestion, they tven
cause peptic ulcers or high blood pressure. A child's dislike for school may make him
sick every morning, without his being conscious of the connection. Under certain
conditions, with lot of practice, some people have found it possible to consciously control
heart beat, or blood pressure, or body temperature or breathing rate and oxygen intake;
others may regulate the feeling of pain or even correct malfunction of an organ. But these
are extraordinary and excepticnal abilities ckveloped with tremendous expenditure c&
time and effort.

I st
. i) :interacts with con ious nervous activity to affect the body functions
ii) controls activitied that are volunta~
iii) controls act~vitiesthat are involuntary and self- regulatory M'-d and BOay

iv) 'activates the body in a situation of stress

V) all of the above.


Most of us are not even aware that another system works constantly, along with the nervous
system and the muscles, to direct our bodily functions. The system depends on chemical
substances called hormones that are released by special glands called endocrine glands.
These glands have no opening or ducts but release their secretions directly into the blood
stream as it passes through their.tissues. You can see theirlocation in the body in Fig. 23.10





Fig. 23.10: Location of some endocrine dlands. The figure shows both ovaries and testes for convenience.

Each hormone acts on a certain organ in a specific way. Many of the effects of hormones are
long term changes, for example, the changes that take place in the body during growth and
sexual maturity. However, some of the changes may be quick like the ones that occur when
the heart rate and breathing rate is increased or decreased. l

A lis of some of the major endocrine glands a!ong with the hormones they secrete is given
in Ta le 23.1. You are not expected to remember each of them. The information is provided,
in case, you are curious to know more about these glands.

You can see that these hormones are vital for the proper functioning of the body. They
regulate the chemical reactibns in the body and consequently play a critical role in
maintaining n o h a l physical conditions or homeostasis. If hormones are to serve a
regulatory function. they must be produced at the proper time. in proper amounts. This. is
controlled by the brain, receiving information from all parts of the body and giving
appropriate signals to the glands. This feedback system is very much like a thermostat that
controls temperature in a machine. Any break in this feedback system leads to severe
consequences. For exainple. the thyroid gland produces thyroxine which controls.the
metabolic rate in the body. Oversecretion tends to make a person thin, overactive and
anxious while undersecretion makes him over-weight and sluggish. Thyroxine deficiency, in
fact, causes mental as well as physical retardation which can be prevented if the deficiency
is discovered sufficiently early and the right amount of the hormone is given.
The hormones work in close coordination with our nervous system. For example, in a
situation of danger or fear, the sense organs convey the information to the central nervous
system and the autonomic system is activated within seconds. The adrenal glands arc also
activated to release a hormone called adrenaline. When adrenaline reaches the alimentary
canal and the skin. their blood vessels conwact, diverting the blood supply to the muscles;
the pupils of the eyes are dilated and glucose is released in the blood to speed up the rate of
breathing. All these changes help a person who requires increased activity such as running
away or fighting. You would be able to identify all these actions with those initiated by the
autonomic nervous system that you have studied in sub-section 23.5.2.

Some major Endorrim Chnb and their F u w h w

GhnQ Horlnom Functlona

Hypothalamus Group of n l w i n g or Stimulates b inhibits pituitary
inhibiting factors
Pituitary '' Antidiuretic (ADH) Inhibits urine production
C . u v utrine conhPCtions in delivery and
production of milk
Growth hormone CMes growth of bones, muscles and glands
- ~drcnocorticotropich o m ~ m(ACTH)
Thyroid stimulating honnone (TSH).
Parathyroid Parathormone lncnuss blood cakjuh level
Thyroid Thyroxme Incream metabolic nte
Cakitonin Lowem Mood calcium level
Adrenal medulla Adrenalin ~heutuwtmpirationntcr.Mood
supr kvol stc.
Adrenal cortex Group of hormones .

Sex hormones
Pancreas Insulin W e s body to metrbolile nu*, nph
Glucagon hcrmcs level of sugar in blood
Ovaries Estrogen Regulates functions of u W . pwnasl
secondary r e x d chuacten

Testes Testosterone

Nervous control evokes these reactions very rapidly in the time of danger; hormones provide
a backup that maintains the response after the initial shock is over. This explains the state of
'nervous energy' that remains even after the final exam or a performance is over.
Often we see that in combination with the nervous system, hormones can change the
behaviour of a person. Some of the abnormal behaviours shown by an individual may well
be due to over or tinder secretion of certain hormones. ~ d d athe~ ,science of biochemistry
has made it possible to synthesise hormones, which can be administered to the body by
means of injections or given orally, if the glands are unable to produce the right amount
needed at different times. The most common example is that of insulin, which has m a
diabetic people live a longer and normal life.
Tickemark the correct alternative from the words given in each parenthesis.
i) The effect of hormones is (slowerlfaster) than nervous action.
ii) Hormones are (vitallunimportant)for the proper functioning of our body.
iii) Hormones (cannotican) be supplemented externally if the body is not able to
produce them in adequate amounts.


ksming, m&ory intelligence. .,

is divided into the Cenaal Nervous System. consisting of the brain
the Peripbd Nervous System, consisting of all the nerves in the
snd functions of the nervous system are summarised in the table

The H w N m a u System
( * Functions

Centre of thought, memory, intelligence, initiates

voluntary actions: interprets sensations; controls emotions.
Associated with forebrain and hindbran, nceives and
filters smsory information before sending it to the
Relays messages between brain and spinal cord, controls
involuntary functions like respiration. Coordinates
equilibrium and movement.
C d s infomation between brain and peripheral nervous
system. Pan d,reflex circuits. , ,

, Take messages from sense organs to CNS.~Aluntary.

. .
, . control of muscks:
.: I ' .
D involuntary control of internal organs Respond to
emergencies, ~ncrcarchean rate, d,l: r pupils, increase

nervous rca%on that does not involve the brain. The s~mplest
a 6emmy neuron, an inter neuron and a motor neuron connected

qWem ~aIhighly
I integrated sys&mcapable of coordinating and
8 e~hievean enonnous range
MBYM#W b d 8 ~ to - and choice of responses.

md. thc wcntd by them are vital for the normal

irtisnct m d grwth of an individual. Some of these: hormones work
witb rhe nervous qs#m to affect behaviour.
Jr%vnation, knowledge, 2 People who suffer damage to the cerebral hemisphere are mentally impaired but alive, \
Insrght people who suffer damage to the brain stem, especially medulla, almost always die
within a short time. What aspect of brain functioning do you think accounts for this

3 Keeping in mind the properties of simple reflexes. explain briefly whether coughing is
a reflex or voluntary action.

4 Describe briefly the differences between coordination by hormones and coordination

by the nervous system. You should write your answers keeping in mind:
a) The route of cortduction of messages,
b) The speed of conduction, and
c) The speed and duration of response.

5 Tick the correct statements in the boxes provided alongside the statements.
i) The right half of the cerebral cortex controls the left side of the body and vice
ii) Only the left hemisphere of the cerebral cortex is specialised for language. -
iii) Motor areas of the brain control the voluntary muscle activity.
iv) The central nervous system consists of the brain and spinal cord.
V) The millions of possible inter-connections between the nerve cells in the brain
are responsible for complicated actions. learning, memory and intelligence. .
vi) Hormones secreted by endocrine glands work as a separate system of

Self-Assessment Questions
1) i) axon, dendrite
ii) axon, synapse
, iii) sensory neurons
iv) motor neurons, glands
v) neurotransmitters
2) Compare the labelling with Fig. 23.4. ~ i n and
d Body
Cerebrum - thinking, speech, taste and other complex responses
Cerebellum - coordination of movements; maintains balance of body
Thalamus - relay centre for incoming sensory messages to the cortex
Hypothalamus - controls thirst, hunger etc., maintains homeostasis
Midbrain - decides which stimuli should reach the concerned parts
of the brain.
3) a) -4
b) -2
c) -5
d) -1
e) -3
4) Correct statements are (i), (iii) and (iv).
5) a) slower
b) vital
C) can

Terminal Questions
1) a) 4 cell bodies i) of pain receptor cell
ii) of sensory neuron
iii) inter neuron
iv) motor neuron
b) 4 synapses i) between pain receptor and dendrite of sensory neuron
ii) between axon of sensory neuron and cell body of inter
iii) between axon of inter neuron and cell body of motor
iv) between axon of motor neuron and muscle cell
2) Damage to cerebral hemisphere affects voluntary actions, while damage to medulla
disrupts body functions that are vital to life like heart beat, breathing, blood pressure.
These functions are involuntary and must go on if life hss to be sustained.
3) It can be both. You can cough deliberately but normally it is a reflex action.
i) because it is an involuntary response when the throat is imtated or if food
accidentally goes into the windpipe.
ii) The response to such situations is always the same. One does not forget them.
4) a) messages travel along nerves and nerve fibres while hormones are secreted directly
into the blood which takes them to the target organ.
b) Messages are conducted much faster by nervous system within a second while
action of hormones is slower-from 4 few minutes to days.
C) The response for nervous impulses is immediate while for hormones, the response
may be over years.
5) True statements are: (i), (iii), (iv) and (v).

24.1 Introduction
24.2 Learning
Stlmulus and Response
Reward and Punishment
Cognltlve Leamlng
24.3 Intelligence Quotient
24.4 Creativity
24.5 Adolescence
24.6 Aspirations, Conflicts and Frustrations
24.7 Aggression
Instlnct or Leamed?
B~ologrcalBasls of Aggress~on
Aggress~onas a Learned Response
24.8 Human Factor Engineering
. 24.9 Experiments with Man in Space
24.10 Summary
24.1 1 Terminal Questions
24.12 Answers
In the previous Unit we studied the structure and working of the brain and the nervous
system. We found that all our behaviour is conditioned by the activity of the brain, the ,
nervous system and the endocriie system or the ductless glands which secrete various ,
ho$hones. But because of the complexity of the human brain and the hard-to-define nature
of such activities as "thinking", "imagining" or "intuition", there are still large gaps in our
knowledge of the functions of the brain. In many ways, therefore, it is more practical to
study the behaviour of the brain and the nervous system in terms of the signals they receive
and the response they show, rather than the internal working of the brain. This Ieads us to
discuss some aspects of psychology and human behaviour. Several other questions such as
the stages of mental development, and the role of learning, creativity and personal
characteristics will be briefly explained.
We also give you a brief description of human factor engineering, a science that takes into
consideration the capabilities and limitations of the human body while designing any
-machine, tobl or place of work. T+e desire to understand how human beings adapt to
unusual environments leads to various experiments with them in space. We will try to make
you aware of some of the observations that were-made during such explorations.
After studying this unit you should be able to :
describe three foims in which learning takes place
distinguish between intelligence and creativity
identify some physical and behavioural changes that take place during adolescence
explain whether aggressive behaviour is instinctive or learned
give reasons for developing the principles used in human factor engineering
describe some psychological experiments performed on man in space.

When we talk about learning, we usually mean acquiring a new skill, new info6atioRor
new ideas. For instance you may be learning to ride a oicvcle or play a game or swak a new
language. Coming to think of it you have learnt numerous things in the course of your life-
from learning to walk and talk, to the learning of history or geography etc., and again to the
learning of social behaviour and ideas about right and wrong, just and unjust. In fact, all
your attitudes, y&es a d beliefs, all that distinguishes y6u as a person different from others
is a result or continuous learning. Everyone of us is exposed to new situations and Psychological ~ s p e c t of
experiences everyday and all of us are constantly learning from them. Our behaviour Behaviour
strongly depends on the learning we have gone through either by way of training, study or
experience. Of course, it does not mean that all behaviour is rational or reasonable. As a
child, a person may have picked up unhealthy habits, like not keeping his or her body and
clothes clean, or being lazy and slothful. Wrong values are also "learnt", sometimes from
family and friends, like considering other people untouchable, or worth despising, simply
because they speak a different language or profess a different religion. However, some
behaviour is "instinctive", i.e. belonging to human species, even without learning one would
do certain things-for example, a mother protecting a child from injury.

24.2.1 Stimulus and Response

Scientists concerned with human behaviour and attitudes, namely psychologists, have tried
to understand the basic process of learning, starting from simple models and situations. The
simplest model is that of stimulus and response. The Russian Nobel Prize winner, Ivan
Pavlov in early 1900s canied out some experiments on dogs which were perhaps the best
examples of a stimulus producing a certain kind of response. While studying the physiology
of digestion in dogs he wanted to measure the flow of saliva. For this he inserted a tube in
the cheek of the dog and placed a bowl of meat in front of it and the dog began to salivate
(seeFig.24.1). .

:b 24.1: PAVLOV'S EXPERIMENTAL APPARATUS. One of Pavlov's famous dogs stands surrounded by the
apparatus devised by the Russ~anscientist to test learned reflexes. Saliva canied by a tube to beaker, acttvated a lever
connwted to the pen beyond the screen at left. Each dmp of saliva was registered by a mark on the revotvtng drum.
The dogs evidently learned to enjoy their work, hopping up onto the platform without being asked. +
This, of coutse, is a natural response of any dog. He begins to salivate when he gets his
food. But a strange thing happened. The dog began to salivate at the sight of the apparatus or
the experimenter even before the food was placed in front of it. Pavlov could have treated
this as an experimental nuisance but being a scientist he started asking questions.
Pavlov knew that salivation at the sight of food was a natural reflex action. It happens in every
dog since birth, but the other reaction was something new, what we can call a learned reflex.
Now he decided to investigate if the dog could be made to associate food .with other stimuli.
In a typical experiment, a bell was sounded just before the meat was given to the dog. This
was repeated several times. Pavlov noticed that the dog now began to salivate as soon as the
bell was rung even if food was not given. The animal associated the two stimuli, food and
bell, therefore, one could be substituted for the other. Table 24.1 shows the steps in this
training process.
Table 24.1
Steps in Pavlov's Experiment
Stimulus Response
B e f o e training Bell Attention of the dog but no sal~vatton
Food Salivat~on(Natural Reflex)
During training Bell and fqod Salivation
After tralnlng Bell abne Sal~vat~on
(LedrneJ Reflex)

Even human beings learn things according to this simple niodel. If a person has done good
to you many times, you may begin to associate goodness with the person. Sometimes, cheats
use this technique to first gain your confidence by a few simple acts, and then when your
trust has grown, they might run away with your belonging!
Table 24.2 Psychologlral Aspects of
- Behavhnr
Developmental Stages of the Child 3

Stage Behaviour associated with each stage You are adnseo 1 6 see the vidm
programme entitled Jean Piaget-
Sensorimotor Period This is the time to coordinate sensory information with motor responses Developmental stages of the
Birth to 2 yrs Sights. sounds and smells are at first signals associated with feeding, \child.
cuddling and all good things. But soon the infants struggle to judge
distance and catch things with their hands. Already they discover by
about 10 months of age that if a thing is hidden from view it still exists.
This is known as 'object permanence'. They will search for a face or a
toy that is hidden frpm them. They learn to walk, and begin to talk. The
ability of babies to put words in reasonable grammatical order and to
make sensible sentences is a subject of considerable wonder among
Preoperational Period Soon children begin to use symbols and ,language, bur they are
2 to 7 yrs of age preoccupied with themselves and cannot see other people'b viewpoints.
They consider themselves as the centre of the world. Their reasoning
ability is very limited. They cannot understand that the amount of
something will remain the same even if the shape changes. F& example.
a child will understand that glass containers A and B which have similar
shape (see Fig. 24.2). have the same amount of liquid but if the liquid Fig. 24.2
from B is poured in a narrow tall glass container C. he will say t h a ~C
contains more liquid. Children at this age can have very good memory;
they can memorize easily. but they also forget unless memory is
Concrete Operations Thought processes become logical. Children will not befooled by the tall
7-1 1 ,yrs glass now. However, they can deal with only theconcrete and immediate.
Parents and teachers may get frustrated if they try to teach children.
things far removed from their actual experience or abstract concepts like
'justice' or 'integrity'. Children also acquire the ability to compare two
things on a dimension such as weight and size, e.g.. if A is taller than B
and B is taller than C, then they will say A must be taller than C .
Formar operations Children can begin to think in abstract terms now. They can reason and
I I yrs upwards find out the elements of a problem. In the next few vears, adult thinking

You have to remember that all these are based on general observations on children in
Switzerland. Our country provides different type of family life to children and hence our
children may not exactly conform to these average situations. Again, individuais can be
widely different because of biological factors-some children may be ahead of averages and
some may be behind. If you have children around you, you may try to find out for yourself
some of these stages in their mental development.
Onsthe other hand, the course of mental development from the youngest to the age of 12-15
years shows that there are limitation to what children can learn at different stages of their
lives. This is a fact of great significance for educationists who design courses of study. If we
do not pay any attention to this fact and try to give abstract concepts to a child who hasn't
developed the mental ability to handle such concepts, it will have no option but to memorise
answers and give a false impression about his learning. Unfortunately, this is very common
in our lives and memorisation or rote-learning has become more important in the practice of
our schools and colleges, then the learning process as a whole.

S4Q 1
a) Fill in the blanks usmg words from the t en list.
i) Any behaviour that is specific and not affected by practice is ......................
ii) ..................... decreases the probability that a response will be repeated.
iii) Feelings of revulsion at the sight or smell of certain foods because of bad
experience with those foods is a ......................
iv) Training a dog to help the blind involves learning mostly through ......................
v) Learning and remembering information in a text book involves
learning, learned reflex, instinctive, rewards)
Not too long ago, however, it was believed that intelligence was fixed at birth and
unaffected by anything in later life. But studies conducted on different groups indicate that
inadequate nutritional conditions before birth and during early years of lifq, not only dwarf
the body but dull De mind too.

What is the missing number ? What are the missing letters ?

7 11 15 19 ?

1 2 3

Find the odd figure.

4 5
Find the odd word.

ITCQb =T 11 -
Draw the m~ssingfigure.

1 2 3 4 5

What is the missing number ? e--- EE ?

t +

Find the odd Figure.


1 2 3 4 5

Fig. 24.3: Sample Intelligence Test Problems

Tests for general intelligence correlate highly with achievements in school and to a lesser
degree with achievements in later life. For example, a most successful businessman, or a
cricketer, or a politician need not necessarily have a top level IQ.
To do well in a typical intelligence test, the subject must be able to recall and to recognise,
and to solve a problem in an analytical manner but he need not necessarily be able to invent
new things--such as write poetry, paint a picture, invent a new kind of engine, or create a
new theory. These latter abilities are involved in "creativityw-which we will discuss next.

The ability to come up with novel ideas, is not entirely based on reasoning.- because
reasoning will lead every person to tread the same path, and reach the same conclusion. One
has to go beyond reasoning to state a new idea, which then may be tested for its usefulness.
Sirvlilarly an artists paint a new pieture, not because of geometrical considerations but
because of an impulse to create something beautiful. Imagination is said to play an important
role in creativity. People who are able to fluently think of many, and even unusual
alternatives in a given situation are said to possess fluency and flexibility of ideas, which is
conducive to creiitivity. It is this rather unusual ability, different from reasoning, analysis
and synthesis, which is the source of major advances in our understanding of the world, and
equally of great works of art which have been universally admired. Newton and Einstein are
examples from science, Tagore and Tansen from the arts, and Marx and Gandhi from social
Information, Knowledge, It has been found that those who excel in generating uncommon ideas are also not rigidly
Qsight bounil'to many traditions and rules, they are more independent minded, free thinking and
unconventional in their ways. Students who show such qualities are not always the
favourities of their teachers, and schools prove even a hurdle to their careers. Since creative
people make a large contribution to advancement of society, we should be keen to develop
education and schooling so as give them a chance to show their worth.
A sample of the types of tests which have been evolved to measure creative potential is
shown in Fig. 24.4. Several such tests were devised to find a relationship between the
intelligence and creativity of a person. The results showed that there was only a low
correlationship between IQ and creativity.
If a person has a low IQ his creativity was low too.
If creativity was high then IQ was above average.
But high IQ did not necessarily mean high creativity.
Within a group of subjects with bbove average intelligence, there was no relationship
between.creativity and IQ.

1. In five minutes, see how CONSTANTINOPLE

many words you can make
out of the following.word.

2. In five minutes, list all the

things you can do with a
paper clip.

3. Trace the figure onto

a blank piece of paper and
draw a picture, incorporat-
ing the figure into it.
4. Find ten coins and arrange
them in the configuration 8
shown . By moving
only two coins, form two
rows that each contain 6
coins. 0

Fig. 24.4: Shows a sample of the kind of test administered to

measure the creativity o f a person.

Before proceeding further tr)l this SAQ to check what you have learnt in the above section.
a) Tick mark the correct statements in the space provided against them.
i) Measuring IQ is really measuring a person's mental age.
ii) Economically deprived people are bound to have\ a low IQ.
iii) IQ tests used in Amenca are the best to use in India.
iv) Highly creative people must have an IQ of 140.
V) A student's ability to reason,,analyse and synthesise depends
on his .or her schooling.
vi) Intelligence is to find a single solution to a problem, and creativity is
to look for many possible solutions.
b) See Figure 24.4 and try to complete the creativity tasks indicated there.

In Unit 23, Mind and Body, you have already studied that certain hormones are essential for
proper physical development of an individual. Around the age of 12, starts a period when
special hormones are secreted in the body and transition from childhood to adulthood takes
place. This is kndwn as adolescence, a period of very rapid physical growth, accompaniqd

by a gradual develbpment of reproductive organs and secondary sexual characteristics such Psyehdogicd k s p c c t ~of
as beard for men and breasts for women. The age limits of adolescence roughly extend fnnn .BehovTollL.
around 12 to about 18 years when physical growth is nearly complete.
During adolescence, not only is physical growth rapid, but its sex-related character changes
the social position of the individual. Cognitive development and knowledge base also
reaches a point when a person is able to formulate his or her ideas, fairly clearly, about
various questions in life. People are able to develop a world outlook or an ideology of their
own, and hence personality. At the end, they are no more boys or girls, but they are men and
women, generally able to stand on their own. The five or six years of adolescence stage are
very crucial for everyone, and since they generally correspond to classes 7th or 8th to 12th
or first year of college, they are important for teachers to keep in mind while dealing with
'theit students. The transition can be clumsy and confusing, too aggressive or too timid for
the young person, but it is also a wonderful experience to grow out of childhood and face the
world as a c o n f l d e n e @ - d y to cnatfge it.
Choose the correet-#rord from those given below to fill in the blanks.
i) ........................... is a, time of transition from childhood to adulthood.
ii) Hormones produced by testes and ovaries are responsible for the ...........................
........................... seen in boys and girls.
iii) Adolescence is often a period of stress and emotional instability because it involves
a search for ...................:...................

( Secondary sexual characters, personal identity, adolescence)


In the previous section wt: discussed that durlng adolescence, an individual has to adjust to
new physical and mental conditjo$sr We often have to make decisions and choices about
hdw to spend our time, money and energy. Sometimes the choices are simple like whether to
wear a blue dress or a green one. At other tlmes conflicts may put us in a dilemma, such as,
whether to go to the cinema or to study at home? In other spheres of life, such as marriage,
religious beliefs, changing jobs, conflicts may be severe and persistent, which may lead to
anxiety, or even frustration We often aspire to be something or attain some objective or
position, but such aspirations or goal may be limited by several factors which may relate to
the family, nature of job or place of work, or other social and personal circumstances. A
potential source of tension is a situation when there is a conflict between two goals. You
may want to become an athelete, at the same time you may want to attain the maximum
marks in your class. For both these activities you must have a lot of time. You would have to
make a decision. Failure to find a solution or compromise between conflicts can build up to
serious psychological or mental disorders.
What happens when you are frustrated? You are upset and angry, which may lead to other
types of behaviour that are irrational, unpleasant or abnormal. We shall look into these
reactions later. But a feeling of frustration is a signal that there is a problem to be solved.
Usually, the problem is not clearly identified, and the first struggle is to identify it. One has
to search.0ne.s intentions and preferences, and examine where exactly do the impediments
lie. But once we do that, we can make a realistic decision about our options. It is through
these kinds of experiences that our mental growth takes place. For example, a student who
did not do well in the examination, fails. He is frustrated, but when he can identify what was
it, that caused the failure, whether it was other interests that prevented study, or friends who
proved to be a distraction, or if the teacher didn't explain well etc., he can try again in a
modified situatipn. Unresolved frustrations can lead to a peculiar behaviour whicKis called
"aggres~ion'~, or aggressive behaviour.

We often k v e difficuliy hdealing with our a g e r and hostile feelings and this leads to
pggres+.,We he& to define what we mean by that. Aggnssion is often described as the
intention to injure another person either physically or verbally or to destroy property. Notice
I tncbrmation, K&C, the word intention has been italicised. If you accidently step on someone's foot in the crowd
I and apologise immediately, the act would not be termed aggressive because you did not step
on the foot intentionally.

24.7.1 Instinct or Learned?

Having defined aggression let us tryyo analyse if it is a basic instinct or a learned behaviour.
Some psychologists believe thar aggression is a natural instinct and give at least two kinds of
arguments for it. Firstly, that it is so widespread. Our history is largely a history of wars and
we hear about the violent acts that take place daily in our society. Secondly, we know that
aggressive behaviour in animals is observable at every stage, we can even breed animals
selectively fbr their aggressiveness, for example bull dogs, hounds and terriers are more
aggressive than othtr dogs, say poodles. Such dogs are trained for hunting and as police
dogs. In the older days, the kings and nawabs bred and trained rams, cocks, eagles etc., for
fighting matches. The pedigree was maintained for their aggressiveness. On the other hand,
another group of psychologists believe that aggression is a result of frustration and conflict
and is a learned response and i t must find an outlet. We will explain this later.

24.7.2 Biological Basis of Aggression
Studies show that mild electrical stimulation of a specific region of the hypothalamus
I produces aggressive behaviour in animals. When a cat's hypothalamus was stimulated by
' . implanting electrodes in the brain and passing an electric current, it's hair stood on end; it
hissed and arched it's back and would strike at anything that was placed in its cage.
In higher mammals like monkeys this instinctive pattern is not observed. Their behaviour
was seen to be more controlled by the cerebral cortex rather than mere stimulation of the
hypothalamus. The hypoth;~llr~nus may send a message to the cerebral cortex that its
aggressive centres have bcen stimulated, the cortex then chooses the response considering
what is going on in the environment, and what has been stored in the memory from past
We too have centres in thc brain that can make us behave aggressively, but thefactivation is
under cognitive control. Some brain damaged persons may react to stimulation with
aggressive behaviour, which would not elicit any response from normal persons. In such
cases, it was found that the cerebral cortex was the damaged area ot the brain. In normal
persons. we can say that aggressive hehaviour is determined largkly by social influences and
personal experiences.

24.7.3 Aggression as a Learned Response

- Reading through the previous \ection must have given you an idea that aggression is not just
an instincr In mall. A per\on who I \ frumated by a blocked goal may or may not behave
aggress~vely,depend~ng0 1 1 hou he has learned to cope with stressful situations.

Fig. 24.5: ,Frustration1s one of the causes for Fig. 24.6: Aggression is instinctive in
76 aeeressive behaviour. ' animals.
e further, let us assume that you are preparing for an exam or reading
~ o d a b r a t this Psychological Aspects o f '
something that requires concentration. Your neighbour plays his radio at full volume. You Behaviour
would probably first go and request him to lower the volume. If he refuses, you have to
think about what to do.
you could get very angry and exchange some harsh words or,
you might even beat him up,
another alternative would be that you let your temper cool off, or move away to a quieter
place. This might enable you to take up the matter with your neighbour when both of you
are in a reazonable mood.
Out of these three, the response chosen by you would be one, that has been the most
successful in the past in a similar situation.
Unpleasant situations often lead to aggressive behaviour. In a study involving two groups,
one group was made to work in a stuffy and hot room while the other was maie to work in a
cooler and pleasant room. A person was made to behave aggressively with each group. The
reaction csf the group work~ngin uncomfortable circumstances was significantly more
aggressive to this person than the group that was' working under comfortable conditions.
Children, too, learn to respond aggressively by imitation of elders. In some studies, children
who watched an adult behave aggressively learned to imitate him and thus behaved in a
more aggressive fashion like, hitting each other or pushing one another around. While
another groups of children who hadn't been exposed to such adult behaviour showed no
increase in their aggressive attitude.
Aggressive behaviour is learned through observation and is often reinforced by its
consequences. For instances, if adolescent who is larger and has more muscle power than
other boys sees that he can get what he wants by threatening or beating smaller boys he will
repeat this act as often as he can.
.'id Sometimes we can't t e e out our aggression directly on whoever is the cause of our
frustrations. What happens then is a case of displaced aggression. For example, a boy of 15
or 16 wants to go out with his friends for a weekend and his parents refuse to give him
$; 6

pe-mission. The boy may not be able to do much about it but may, in anger, break a few

things in the house or bang the door or go and quarrel with the neighbour.

Sodetimes, this displaced aggression can lead to much more serious consequences than
what we are suggesting in ourexample. A group of striking students or workers may go on a
rampage damaging public property, and may hurt even innocent bystanders, just because of
frustration in their attempts to cause ham-to the authority eo&erned.
F Match the term on the left with'correct phrases from the list on the right.
.;,;I a) Frustration
b) Aggression
i) Indirect anger
ii) Caused by blocking or confusing of goals
C) Conflict - iii) Intention to hurt another person or object
d) Aspirations - iv) Having to make choices
e) Displaced - v) To want to reach a goal . '



With the advances in science and technology, we have to constantly interact with machines To get a better perspective of&
and engineering systems. The range is wide, whether it is a worker in a factory, or a driver subject you are advised to listen tc
the audio programme - 'Human
of motor vehicles or a farmer using farm implements like threshers and tractors or an Factor Engineering'.
individual using a sophisticated computer. In each case it is important that the machines and
manner of their operation should be suited to human abilities, if the maximum work output
is to be realised. The study of the efficiency of a person in his working environment is called
human factor engineering or ergonomics. The people who are trained in this branch of
applied psychology are known as human factor specialists.
How was the importance of suitable working environments and machine designsrealised?
During World War 11,457 US Air Force accidents took place in a 22 month period. An
Infornlation, Knowledge, analysis of these accidents showed that pilots confused between two control levers, one
ldlght related to landing and the other to wings. Often they didn't even know if they had enough
petrol to complete their missions. Soon it was realised that selection and training alone
. would got produce efficient pilots. The equipment itself needed to be redesigned.
For the first time, design engineers started working in collaboration with psychologists to try
and ensure that the machine systems will suit human requirements and abilities. The shapes
of the controls for landing gear and wings were so designed, that the difference between
them was obvious and chances of mistakes were eliminated. Similarly, the markings on the
fuel gauge were changed to indicate fuel quantity as FULL; HALF FULL; EMPTY
instead of in actual gallons. You must have noticed this in present day buses and motor cars
etc. Thus, the esseiitial job of human factor specialists is to see that machine systems are
designed with the user in mind, so that they can be run with maximum efficiency and
minimum error. For this purpose, they study the effects of work environment such as
ventilation, noise and illumination. This leads to improvement in the design of the work
place, to make it more comfortable, safe, and conducive to performance. The duration of the
shifts is also studied in relation to production, to see how long a person can work with full
concentration. The speed of the workers' reflexes and motor movements has also to be taken
into consideration.
The result of human factor engineering may not always be obvious, especially if the effecs is
of convenience rather than safety. The telephone instrument is one machine that can be easily
operated by men, women and children alike. So every change in design is preceded by elaborate
tests and calculations. For example, in 1937 a new handset was designed and 2000 male and
female heds were measured before they decided on the dimensions indicated in Fig. 24.7.

(1 IN = 2.54 CM)

Fig.24.7: Dataofan average telephone user's head. Such data is known as

anthropomeaic data. Each of the shades near the mouthpiece represent the
ear to mouth distance of 20 per a n t of the populafion.

Almostlall of us use the chair for varied lengths of time during the day. Some of us use it for
more than 8 hrs. a day. May be you are sitting on a chair while muling this unit! Jiro Koharo
of Chiba University in Japan has studied how chairs affectaur body. He found h a t if the
seat of a chair is too high or too long it may disturb the cirCulation of blood in the thigh
blood vessels. If the back of the chair does not support the spine properly, abdomenal and
back muscles get tired and cause discomfort. Soft cushions in chairs cause the maximum
discomfort because they do not help the body balance, so muscles must work continuously
to maintain the balance of the body.
Psychological Aspects d

Fig. 24.8: Relating chairs to body mechanics. Suppon for the spine. X-ray photograph of an office Worker
showing where the back rest of the chair presses. After seeing the X-ray, it was suggested that the backrcst be -.
lowered by 2.5 cm. to make sitting more comfortable.

We often do not realise it, but most of the things we use in our daily life have been designed
keeping the human abilities and conveniences in mind. The slabs or shelves inrhe kitchen
for example, are of a particular height so that the user is least tired while working.



We have already discussed the usefulness of space flights in Blocks 3 & 4. One is able to
make astronomical observations from satellites; get meteorological information; Obtain
invaluable data on resources of the earth and the condition of crops and forests. The human
urge to know the unknown and, if possible see what the conditions on the moon or planets
are like, has also been a great factor in space exploration. Human ingenuity and creative
power have given us the opportunity to cany out much of this research and exploration with
the help-of instruments which can be controlled from the earth. For example, samples of soil
from the moon have.been brought back to earth by automatic machines and rockets, without
Actual human presence on the moon.
Nevertheless, there is nothing like a human eye observing the panorama of the moon, and
describing the scenery-beyond what a camera can do through a picture. But, space travel
for human beings is a very difficult proposition, and in order to make it possible, lot of
research has been done by sending up other biological organisms and animals, such as virus,
bacteria, mice, dogs and even monkeys.
Human beings hate to travel in h e most unnatural circumstances-if there is a single
astronaut, he has absolutely no company for as long as he travels, and most unfamiliar
scenes-looking out of the window, he sees nothing except stars. This loneliness, and !
absence of sensations from outside has been found to be a source of great mental stress.
Man is a social animal, and he has to receive sensations through his eyes, ears, nose and skin
etc.. to feel normal. Travelling in a satellite, one feels "weightless"-if you turn a glass
Infop~1.tlon;Knowkdg. upside down the liquid aoes not rail out! So, food also does not naturally move down the
htstght throat--even water is not easy to swallow. It seems our whole body-(digestive system, and
even blood circulation) is accustomed to earth's gravity, and if it is nullified, we cannot be at
ease. Even movement of muscles is difficult. The air inside the space vehicle is kept under
artificial pressure, because outside the vehicle there is near absolute vacuum and no sound of
any kind can reach the space craft. Of course, there are great problems in washing, or taking
a bath or in passing stools. Obviously any space traveller would feel out of sorts - but that
is a mild word, he or she can feel absolutely confused, lethargic and psychologically
But practice is a great help. Modern astronauts go through a long period of training. If they
know what to expect in space, they are mentally and physically prepared for it.
Weightlessness is also simulatd so that a space man or woman can be adjusted to its
peculiarities. Communication iinow much better, the travellers can receive television
pictures and can make telephone calls. They are made to take exercise. It is now the practice
to have a group of men, or men and women in space rather than single persons. That is how,
in one Soviet space craft, people have spent more than a year at one stretch without adverse
effects. The tasks of control and communication are also numerous for the spacemen and
hence a team is needed.
All this shows that our body and mind are attuned to live under normal conditions of
pressure, gravity, sensations and communication. Abnormal physical environment puts our
system under great stress, which shows serious physical as well as psychological effects. But
many of these aspects have come to light only because space had to be conquered and
human beings had to get adjusted to new living conditions. If a colony is made on the moon
or elsewhere, there will be other conditions to be experienced, and hopefully man will prove
equal to the task.

24.10 SUMMARY - -

In this unit, you have learned the following:

Learning is a relatively permanent change in behaviour that can take place : through
training, where a given stimulus produces a response; through reward or punishment;
through cognitive learning that involves memory, reasoning, analysis and synthesis.
Cognitive development proceeds in an orderly sequence and is related to physical
development as was suggested by Piaget.
Performance in cognitive development is measured in terms of the IQ, while the ability
for original thinking is measured in terms of the creativity of an individual. However,
there is low correlation between IQ and creativity.
Adolescence is the period that bridges the gap between childhood and adulthood. It is a
time of rapid physical growth and of uncertainty, trials and experimentation with new
Aggression is a behaviour that is intended to harm another person or property.
Aggression is instinctive behaviour in animals while in human beings it is mostly learned.
It is often the response to stress, conflict or frustration.
Human factor engineering is concerned with study of the efficiency of a person in his
working environment. This is accomplished through the design of equipment and york
Possibility of space travel led to experiments with human beings in space.
Weightlessness, isolation and having to work in a confined environment leads to stress
and disorientation of thought processes.


1 In this unit we have discussed three ways in which learning takes place. Can you give
one example to illustrate each kind?

Psychological Aspects ~i

2 Sudha who is 12 years old, always comes first in her class. She was tested for
intelligence and creativity both by her school psychologists. The score on the IQ test
was 15 points while that on creaivity test was rather low.
a) Calculate her IQ.
b) Why do you think she did not score well in the test for creativity?

3 Listed below are examples of changes that occur during adolescence. Indicate whether
each change is physical, mental or social.
a) Fifteen year old Ramesh sings very well and used to sing and show off before
groups. Lately he blushes and cringes when his parents ask him to sing for their
b) Thirteen year old Mohan has been asked to withdraw from the group song to be
sung in his school function because he seems to be out of tune with the rest of the
C) Now that Krishan is 16 years old, he seems to be more understanding. He has
begun to understand individual human rights and dignity.

4 There is a society in New Guinea where aggression and conflicts within communities
are virtually unknown. Adults are extremely cooperative and have a spontaneous urge
to help and share food, affection, trust, work etc. Among children, even accidental
aggressive behaviour during play does not persist or get encouraged. What would you
deduce from these observations? Is aggression instinctive or learned behaviour.

5 Give some examples from your experience where you think human factor engineering
has benefited the user and has improved work output.

6 k h a t are the three main factors that affect the psychological stability of an astronaut in

Self-Assessment Questions
1 a) i) instinctive
ii) punishment
'hiormation, Knowledge, iii) learnPedreflex
iv) rewards
V) cognitive learning
b) a) matches iii)
b) matches i)
c) matches iv)
d) matches ii)
2 a) i T
ii) F
iii) F
iv) F
v) T
vi) T
b) There are no 'correct' answers to the task in Fig. 24.3. Creativity involves finding
novel answers!
3 i) adolescence
ii) secondary sexual characters
iii) personal identity
4 a) matches ii)
b) matches ' iii)
c) matches iv)
d) matches v)
e) matches i)

Terminal Questions
1 a) Stimulus-Response
Commercial advertising uses the model of stimulus-response. They pair their
products with attractive places or people. Repeated viewing of such advertisements
causes favourable response from the customers when they see the products.
b) Reward and Punishment
Recruits in the armed fofces learn to maintain discipline through the principle of
reward and punishment.
c) Cognitive Learning
If you go to a new place and have to remember your way back, you use cognitive
learning to do so because you will make a mental map of the way, remember the
road signs or landmarks etc., and then recall all of it when you come back along
that way. You can, of course, think of many more such examples toillustrate the
three forms of learning.
2 a) Sudha's IQ is 125
b) because high IQ does not necessarily indicate high creativity.
3 a) mental
b) physical
c) social
4 In human beings aggression is generally considered to be a learned response. As the
children never encountered aggression they did not learn it.
5 You can think of several other examples to illustrate the principles of human factor
engineering. We have given these two:
i) The typewriter's keyboards have been designed so that the letters that are most
often used are easier to reach.
ii) Brooms with long handles do not strain the back as much as short handles.
6 Isolation, lack of sensory stimuli and weightlessness.


t 25.1 Introduction
25.2 The All-Pervading Communication
25.3 Functions of Communication
25.4 Role of Communication in Creating Awareness
Role of Communicatbn in the Economic Development
Political Role of Communication
Social Role of Communicat~on
The Twenty Point Programme and Cbmmunication
25.5 Role of Communication in Promoting ducati ion
Media and Educational Environment
t Media and Distance Education
Broadcast of Lessons by AIR and Doordarshan
Education and the Media in Future Plans
25.6 Role of Communication in Cultural Understanding
Medial Religion, Language and Culture
Media and Scientific Outlook in Culture
Media and General Cultural Awareness
Evolution of Composite Culture
25.7 Summary
25.8 Terminal Questions
I 25.9 Answers

In the two previous units you have studied the relationship between mind and body and
various aspects of psychology and behaviour. In this Unit, we shall discuss the role of mass
media in social, economic and political awakening in the broad framework of priorities set
for national development. We shall also discuss the role of media in promoting education
I among our vast illiterate masses. reaching out to larger number of people and diversifving
education to make it more meaningful. India is a country of great cultural diversity; where
i media can play a very positive role in mutual understanding and appreciation between
i different cultural groups and in the evolution of a composite culture. In the next unit, we will
describe various modes of communication.

After studying this unit, you should be able to describe the role of media in :
creating social, economic and political awareness,
promoting ed~icationby reaching out to broad masses of people and helping in making
education more meaningful,
promoting understanding among different cultural groups and in evolution of a composite


In the earlier units of this block, it ha5 been our attempt to acquaint you with the
interdependence of mind and body. To put it briefly, mind is where all kinds of information
is processed, and on its basis, all kinds of thoughts and ideas are generated. It has centres
which regulate the working of the body, and govern its movements. On the other hand, the
body not only supplies the energy needed for the mind to function, but also all the
information which the mind uses. The five senses supply a great variety of sensations: if a
single hair on the human body is touched, a message goes to the brain-in fact, the mind has
to learn to ignore a lot of information which the various sensors continuously supply to it.
Yet the ears and the eyes are, perhaps, the most important connections which the body and
the mind have with the external world. All that you read and all that you hear, puts you in
touch with other people's thoughts, ideas and minds-it also enables the mind to get to
fntormation, Knowledge, know our past, our culture, our hopes and aspirations, and our problems. You habe also seen
i'nslght that when man is deprived of these contacts with the external world, when he receives no
signals from outside, when he can see nothing, hear nothing, smelLand taste nothing, and
when the hair on the skin also receive no information,man is ready to have a nervous
breakdown. Truly, communicating with the outside world is as important for human
existence, as the supply of food, water and air.
Of course, the mind is not a passive machine merely working on received information from
the senses--even though eyes and ears give access not only to sights and sounds, but also to
written and spoken ideas of great cortrplexity. We have already discussed the power of the
mind to continuously learn from all kinds of experience and to originate ideas of its own. Irr
other words, it receives diverse information, it generates mixtures of its own, some of which
have a new flavour. In the course of years, each person's mind develops its own rules of
processing information and &awing conclusions. One may refer to them as attitudes and
values. Some may accept or believe all that they read or hear, others may critically check
and examine before accepting any ideas. Some may be "open minded" and flexible, others
may be rigid or fanatic in holding their views. Some may evolve an outlook or an ideology
of their own, others may remain pragmatic.
The fact that it is natural for the mind to receive information, sensations and ideas from
outside- and that human behaviour, to a large extent. depends on this process, creates very
interesting possibilities, when seen in the light of the great chain of educational institutions
where an individual spends a number of years "acquiring knowledge", or it is also true when
seen in the context of millions of books and magazines which are published in all languages,
or again when examined in relation to the "mass media", i.e., television, radio, films.
newspapers etc. Obviously, civilization has created a tremendous communication network
which converges on the mind of each individual. It is possible to "educate" a person so that
he has access to broad and varied kinds of information, so that he learns not to ,& gullible.
but to question everything before accepting it, and so that his competence to deal with the
family, fellow human beings and the work he does is improved. It is equally possiblel~give
a one-sided picture of the world and to encourage blind faith, unquestioning obedience, &
even fanatism. It is possible to make people believe untruth simply because they may be
exposed to nothing else. This happened in Germany before the Second World War, when
their government's propaganda machine spread the idea of Germans belonging to a superi6r
race and Germany being invincible. It is possible, with the help of mass media, to create
demands for certain kinds of goods and to sell the products advertised, even though people
may not really need them. Lots of propaganda is done in favour of the policies pursued by
governments through radio and T t , and sometimes through newspapers. Books for general
reading, and even text books, contain lots of distortions deliberately introduced to confuse or
divide people in the interests of ruling groups. People in America often believe that Indians
are strange people clad in dhoties or turbans climbing poles or ropes, displaying snake$
believing in a lot of abra-cadabra. We in India have strange notions about Africans or white
wople, or our own tribal people. There are vicious possibilities of building up passions and
&kjudices. Let us examine a few facets of this pervasive communication in which we are all

l i

~ : b a d the
~ ~ main
, role of communication in a social system is :
Receiving and conveying.information which may be facts, messages or op~nions;this
may take place in discourses, debates or discussions.
Motivating a person receiving the message, whether through an individual or through a
medium of mass communication like radio, television, newspapess/journals, books or
films, towards a course of action. This can extend from adopting a method of family
planning, changing one's food habits, to working for a social or political cause.
Providing education and culture; from a class-room situation where knowledge and skills
may be imparted, to dissemination of cultural heritage and values as well as cultivation of
artistic interests.
Entertaining, whether for personal or collective enjoyment through public music, drama
or sports.
Influencing opinion to serve certain economic or political interests.
These are some broad functions of communication. Most of our activities fall under one
34 category or another.
$. -
Informqtipn and
In this section we would discuss the role of oommunication in the economic development
and political and social awakening in.our country. But before we take that up, a few broad
facts may be useful to recall.

25.4.1 Role of Communication in the Economic Development

India today is a country of nearly 800 million people. This is as much as one-sixth of the
world's population. In the year 1981,446 million Indians were illiterate, i.e., they could not
read or write. The literacy percentage was about 36%. There are 15 major languages
recognised in the Constitution, but the number of subsidiary languages and dialects may be
in thousands. Nearly 75 per cent of the population lives in 5,75,000 villages. AS you have
learnt in Block 5, a high percentage of the population is not able to get proper food, clean
drinking water, adequate shelter, health care and clothing.
These figures lead to two conclusions in relation to the role of communication in our
country. First, all means of communication should be used for economic development, i.e.,
to increase production and national income and to improve the living standard of the people,
particularly those sections which are under-privileged. Second, since such a large number of
persons are illjterate they will have to be reached by means other than that of the printed word.
It is for these reasons that India chose to develop its economy through a planned system. The
Five Year Plans are, broadly, intended to accelerate development in industry, agriculture,
etc., through exploitation of the national resources in a manner that the benefits go to people
as a whole: and not only to further enrich those w h o y e already affluent. That is why the
rolc of communication, in this regard, was emphasised in the very First Five Year document
in 1952. In Chapter 8 on "Public Cooperation in National Development" it said, "An
understanding of the priorities, which govern the plan, will enable each person to relate his
oq her role to the larger purpose of the nation as a whole. The plan has, therefore, to be
carried irlto every home, in the language and symbols of the people, with the as'sistance of
creative writers and artists, which have to be specially enlisted. All available methods of
communication have to be developed and the people approached through the written and the
spoken-word no less than through radio, film, song and drama."
It is in this context, that All lndia Radio (AIR) and Doordarshan become the two most
important media of communication. They cut across the baniers of illiteracy and claim to
cover ~ d # number
~e of peop1.e. AIR broadcasts can reach nearly 95 per cent of the people,
*andDoordarshan 70 per cent, of course, if the people have radio and television receivers.
'IJle,Ministryof'lnformation and Broadcasting has other media organisations, like the Films
Division ?nd the Directorate of Field Publicity, which are also trying to reach large sections
of the people in remote and distant areas. The objective of the Ministry of Information and
~roadcasti@,as defined, "is to inform, educate as well as entertain with a view to creating
a&enessknong the people about the nation's potential for development and its problems,
widening their horizon, and soliciting their participation in the implementation of the policies,
plans and programmes of the ~overnmentfor bringing about the economic development and
social change, achieving national security and promoting national integration."

"Inform! Entertain! Educate!"

Fig. 25.1:

The State Governments have their own field units and extension services to promote state
~ e v e l o ~ m ebogrammes
nt and schemes,arrdto m.oti'vatepeople to actively participate in them:
Information, Knowledge, Here, we cannot evaluate the efforts either of the central media or the proaarnmes of the
state governments The point is, that the role of communication in economic development
has been recognised in this country since Independence. It has also been realised that multi.
media combinations, i.e., utilising not only broadcasting through radio and television but
also video and tape cassettes, slides, films, hooks and inter-personal commur cation. are t a ,
be employed to help economic developine: -
- +

Would you like to try and tist at least two areas each fbr the rurk and urban populatibn;
where cbmmunication can help in economic activity?

25.4.2 -fstittear;'Roleof Communication

Communication hhJ an Important role in political and social awakening. During our freedom
struggle, the leaders communicated with the people directly. They had no access to the A.
India Radio because it was controlled by the British Government, which was, in fact, trying
to underplay and suppress the freedom struggle. There was no TV. Newspaper reporting
varied. Only a small number of dailies defied the government of the day. But through
personal contacts and mass meetings, besides the use of national symbols like the tri-colour,!
the charkha and patriotic songs, our leaders were able to stir the conscience of our people all
over the sub-continent. Mass contacts and inter-personal communication were at their best.
They proved as the most effective means of inspiring the people to participate in the
freedom movement and to make supreme sacrifices.
After Independence we, in our Constitution, accepted the pri~cipleof adult franchise. Every
adult has the right to vote in elections to local bodies, state legislatures and the Lok Sabha, "
Thus, every citizen participates in the election of people's representatives to these bodies
which formulate.programmes and policies, They enact laws. The governments, whether in
the states or at the centre, have to get their programmes and enactments approved by the
At the time of elections, each adult can decidewhom to vote for. Hc or she can vote in
favour of a party candidate or an independent. The parties and individual candidates launch
election campaigns during which they explain their stand on the most important public
issues. They also make several promises. All this constitutes political communication and it
enables the voter to make his choice.
The two related questions to ponder about are :
How much, and in what ways, does politics influence communication?
How much, and in what ways, can communication influence politics?
We, in this country, enjoy freedom of speech and expression. The media of mass
communication are partly the means of exercising this right. Of course, it has to be ensured
that no law of the land is violated. Newspapers and journals are privately owned, i.e.. they
are not controlled by the Government. Even AIR and Doordarshan, which are controlled by
the Central Government, are governed by a code, under which they have to be objective and
non-partisan on political issues. Since 1977, the two media have been giving equal lime of
broadcast to each recognised political party during election campaigns. Even outside the
campaign period, the government may use the two media for national purposes and not for
party propaganda.
Thus, communication has an important political role of informing and enlightening the
people, in order that they. participate in political processes. In fact, it would be correct to say,
that democracy and communication, which means freedom of expression, discussion and
debate, are totally interlinked. Without unfettered communication there could be no
You may like to try out the following SAQ related to the political role of communication.
%AQ2 . Infono86bn @
Fill in the blanks with suitable words given below. Communication
i) . Our Constitution has accepted the principle of .....................
ii) We ej o y freedom of ....................and .....................
iji) During the freedom struggle much of the communication was through ....................
iv) The media controlled by government have to be .................... on .....................

(interpersonal communication, adult franchise, objective, political issues, expression,

. speech.)

25.4.3 Social Role of Communication

Social relevance of communication follows from the economic and political role of
communication. We, in this country, have often talked about using media to bring about
social change. What does social change mean? It is obviously difficult to give a precise
definition. But a very general statement will suffice here. Our country has great disparity in
incomes, a vefy small minority is affluent, but the vast majority is poor. Therefore, our
policy is not merely industrialisation or development of agriculture, but it is to extend the
benefits to all strata of our people. Thus, development with social justice is our aim. This
amounts to moving towards a new kind of society. Our country is inhabited by people who
profess different religions, speak different languages, and enjoy different kinds of culture. In
the past, most of us were victims of deprivation under a colonial govemment which
encouraged sections of our people to blame each other for their problems. Now, it is our
policy to develop all cultures, languages and communities, and to bring them closer to each
other. This will consolidate or integrate our nation and allow us to concentrate on working
for a better future. But this again means a vast social change-we say we want to move
towards unity in diversity, and we wish our state to be secular where religion doesn't divide,
and decisions of the state are rational rather than emotional and partisan. In a democracy,
where the citizen is sovereign, we have to go forward on the basis of persuading people to

ccept certain ideas and programmes, and therefore, there is a crucial role for
ommunication in bringing about a social change. Social role of communication is to build
'dges of understanding among these groups whose objective interests are the same. This,
id fact, is the crucial challenge before media in the country.
In the social context also, communication is ex$cted to serve the immediate interests and
needs of individual citizens. People have to be served with information about their rights,
which under the law of the land, they are expected to enjoy. There are several benefits to
which people as citizens are entitled but, if they are not aware of these beneficial provisions,
how do they make their claims? To illustrate this with an example, not very long ago, the
Indian Institute of Mass Communication conducted a study in selected rural area in the
Khanna dismct of Punjab. This was to find out whether the agricultural labourers knew that
I there was a minimum daily wage fixed for them. The investigators went to several villages
in which the labour was engaged in harvesting of the crops. The lakurers were mostly
migrants from Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan who come to Punjab year after year for
employment during the season. To their utter surprise, i~vesfigatorsfound that hardly any
one of the labourers knew that he or she could ask for the minimum wage.jried by law. This
information never reached them. Obviously there is a section which profits by the ignorance
of the labourers. They w'efe, in fact, being paid much less than what they were entitlgd ro.
Labourers were mostly illiterate and had no means to get information +om radio. Eveh when
they had any access to radio listening, such information was not broadcast. This resulted in a
clear case of social injustice and economic exploitation. If this was the situation in Punjab,
whichis a prosperous state and where the cor~manicatibnsystem is reasonhbly satisfac~ry,
one can only imagine the state of ignorance in backward and remote areas.
Even in urban centres, lack of information can deprive the citizens of social benefits. Certain
sections of the community, women for example, are often more ignorant of their social
nghts than others. Even after the much discussed !d*vc regarding divorce or separation, how
many of the affected women, in fact, know of their .:ghts or obligations? The question calls
for a study in both the urban and rural areas.
The role of communication in social and economic development in our country has, .
thefefore, to be seen against the state of our economic development and social diversities
and inequalities. The communication system has also to give priority to political education
in order to strengthen the institutions on which our democratic system is based. In all respects,
the media, whether under govemment control or privately owned, have a national responsibility.
m11form8tion,Knowledge, SAP 3
1-t Give social relevance of communication in the following areas:
i) rights and privileges of women
ii) national integration

25.4.4 The Twenty Point Programme and Communication

In view of what we have discussed above, it may be useful to have a look at the Twenty
Point Programme (1986), which the Government of India has placed before the people as an
agenda of national priorities. The points are briefly listed in the margin. As would be seen,
Twenty Point Programme besides their thrust on economic development in various spheres,social needs of minority
1 Attack on Rural Poverty groups, whether women or children or people living in slums, form a part of the agenda.
2 Strategy for Rain-fed .
Agriculture Communication, as defined above, is an important element in'the implementation of the
3 Better Use of Irrigation Water Twenty Point Programme. People have to be informed and they have to be motivated for the
4 Bigger Harvests success of the programme.
5 Enforcement of Land Reforms
6 Special Programme for Rural
7 Clean Drinking Water EDUCATION
8 Health for All
Two Children Norm Transmission of knowledge and information, which is the first step in education, is
Expansion of Education obviously possible only through communication. This happens in a classroom situation, in a
Justice to Scheduled Castes factory, a workshop or even in a group-discussion. It is through the process of
and Scheduled Tribes communication, that the knowledge is transferred from one person to another or to a group.
Equality for Women The training in skills and the technique of doing a job go through the same process. The
New Opportunities for Youth availability of media, radio, TV, films, slides, charts or other illustrations, has supplemented
Housing for the People books and teachers in the task of transm'itting knowledge as well as skills. A vastly larger
Improvement of Slums number of persons can now be benefitted through the use of mass media. The media like
New Strategy for Forestry TV, films and video, which have hearing and seeing components, can create impact as well
Rotection of the Consumer as understanding, which is sometimes not possible in a class-room situation. The mere fact
Concern for the Consumer of providing illustrations through moving pictures on a TV set or video screen gives to such
Energy for the Villages media great potential.
A Responsive Administration
25.5.1 Media and Educational Environment
Some recent technological developments in media, have opened up new horizons. Besides,
increasing use of media, to support and expand education, has created what may be called an
"educational environment". In this new environment, both young and old may learn all the
time. In a wider sense, new opportunities of intellectual development have been created.
Media have also extended the benefit of knowledge to deprived men, women and children.
These sections may not be enrolled for formal education in class-rooms but may have access
to radio and TV, perhaps at community centres. Thus, communication through media has
created a climate in which a new human personality, with a much broader vision, is
developing. The simple reason is that the source of information and education are so
expanding as to provide knowledge on a large variety of topics and to large numbers.

25.5.2 Media and Distance Education

The role of media in distance education needs a specific mention. It is impIied that teaching
is done from a dbtance. It is also understood that education is imparted through
correspondence, audio-visual aids, like radio, teIevision and telephone, besides personal
contacts. As against a university, which enrolls students of a similar age, has definite time
schedule, and is confined to a geographical area or campus, an 'open university' can cater
to all kinds of students--of various ages, living in different and even far places, who wish to
combine education with employment or work at home. It can provide a great variety of
courses. Even the pace of learning would be different for students enrolled in the same
course. The Indira Gandhi National Open University is envisaged as an institution for the
'fitire country. One ot the pnnclpal objectives of this University is to provide education to
those who have been denied opportunity for higher education, either because they live in
remote and rural areas or because of any other handicap, including financial constraints and
family obligations. The 'study centres' with audio-viial and library facilities are an
important part of the University. Here, students can meet their academic counsellor and
discuss their difficulties. Support from radio and television is also important in distance

25.5.3 Broadcast of Lessons by AIR and Doordarshan

The electropic media, AIR and Lloordarshan have played a supplementary role to education
at different levels by supporting classroom teaching, They have experimented with the
broadcast of lessons, which are syllabus-based,particularly in school education.
Doordarshan also organised, what may be called, "enrichment" programmes, primarily for
college students, with a view to supplement classroom teaching and thus, widen horizons of
learning. Such broadcasts are not directly related to classroom lessons but their contribution
is not small. Apart from college students, the general public can also benefit from such
broadcasts. This has been a very useful experiment in higher education, sponsored by the
University Grants Commission. Since TV programmes from a single station cannot be
received all over the country, the help of a satellite, with special equipment, is taken to carry
them to all parts of the country.
All India Radio broadcasts educational programmes from 74 stations. In all, about 8 per cent
of the total time devoted to 'spoken-word' programmes is taken by educational broadcasts.
The TV medium is quite obviously more effective than radio, in education, at all levels. The
communicator, in this case the teacher, can be seen by the students even though they are not
able to ask questions. But the TV lesson, if prepared with the understanding of the medium,
should anticipate and answer the questions. More than that, visual presentation of
experiments, photographs and models is a potential &ailable only to television. Thus, TV is
a very effective medium for education. ,

Doordarshan started with syllabus-based lessons for school children in Delhi, in 1961. The
in~tialaim was to improve standard of teaching, particularly in science subjects, because at
that time, even in Delhi, not all schools had laboratory space, equipment or qualified
teachers. Since then, educational programmes, whether for children or for adults or for other
groups like farmers, have become regular TV features. It has been noted that AIR or TV
- programmes provide not only direct learning and broad awareness, but they also'create a
desire to know more and tend to improve the atmosphere in the classrooms. Thus, they play
a doubly important educational role.

25.5.4 Education and the Media in Future Plans

Underlying the need for media support to education, whether related to cumculum or to
enrichment, the National Policy on Education and the related Programme of Action
approved by Parliament in 1986, call for maximum utilisation-ofradio, television and video.
Among the recommendations made are :
Provide maximum Educational Television and Radio programme coverage for reaching
out to school children, illiterate adults, women, scheduled castes, tribal areas etc., in all
major language zones,
Establish radio stations in selected universities and colleges,
Provide a separate channel on television for educational needs of various groups,
Create a.dedicated satellite system for educational needs in the long-term,
Provide radio receivers and TV sets in all primary/elementary schools, and
. Establish a National Centre of Educational Information.

.SAQ 4
btscuss briev tke role ofmedia-inany two of the follow~ng:
i) Extending educational opportunities
~nfdrmation,Kmwledge, ii) Enrichinn learning experience

iii) Creating a learning environment


In the area of cultural promotion, commun~cationmedia can be used to meet the two
fundamental needs. Firstly, the media like radio, cinema, and above all television, can
provide information, spread-awarenessand create motivation to appreciate the
characteristics of our varied culture. These characteristics may be of artistic forms like
music, dance, literature or of knowledge of history and mythology pertaining to different
regions and peoples of our country. Even traditions as well as taboos have fascination of
their own in appreciation of cultural heritage. Secondly, apart from creating knowledge
about culture, the media can be used in the preservation of the heritage. Cultural identity,
i.e., pride in one's cultural heritage, is today an important factor for keeping the people
together. This can happen even in a small community like a tribe which has common
attitudes, customs or ceremonies, or at the national level through bonds of history and
sharing of values. In fact, a sense of belonging and ofnational integration can be created
through the use of media. The media can be used to foster and to deepen loyalty to the
nation. Preservation of culture is, therefore. an important national task.
- -

25.6.1 Media, Religion, Language and culture

Ours is a multi-lingual and a multi-religious society. To a large extent, the states within the
Indian union are organised on the basis of a common language. The many cultural
diversities that we have, need to be related to this background. Each region or language
claims to have its own cultural characteristics. Some of these characteristics are quite
distinct, i.e., they have features which are not shared by other regions. Many of our literary
traditions and festivals belong to this category. There may be an undercurrent linking the
various festivals throughout India but in many ways, they are only regional or social.
Several of our cultural expressions also emerge from religious beliefs. Although religions
are different yet in centuries of living together in a common environment, even these
cultural expressions have been influenced by each other. At philosophical level, each
religion stands for humanism, tolerance, justice and other civilised values. Thus, in spite of
the fact that religious communities here and there adopt a course of conflict and
confrontation, religious diversities and religious regard for each other is a part of our
composite culture and tradition. Therefore, the media, with their power of carrying messages
far and wide, and also straight to the heart, have a unique role to play in India's unity and
25.6.Z-Wia and Scientific Outlook in Culture
Apart from sharing of deeper values through history and continuous interaction, the
contribution made by all sections of the people in our struggle for freedom needs to be
emphasised. Under Gandhiji's leadership, people belonging to all faiths and coming from
different parts of the country, participated in the freedom movement. Gandhiji himself was a
deeply religious man but he @so symbolised tolerance and faith in one nation. In. fact, he
was a symbol of our composite culture. Jawaharlal Nehru had a vision of modem India. In
his vision, the people of India with all their cultural, social and religious diversities had to
develop a scientific outlook (refer to Unit 8) in their personal lives as well as in the affairs of
the state. Communication media have important contribution to make in creating
knowledge of each other's beliefs, in emphasising the common bonds of history and in
developing an objectwe.-not a prejudiced; a rational,-not an obscurantist and an open
minded,-not a rigid or fanatical attitude of mind.
25.6.3 Media and General Culttlral Awareness
How do the media help expand knowledge of the various regional and social groups in the
country or bring about a synthesis? Even :oaay, in several regions, people come to know of
each other only through the media. Th: valley of Kashmir, for example, is surrounded by
mountains. The valley is linked with the rest of the country through air or through road
'transport; there is, as yet, no rail link. Besides the geographical isolation and the lack of rail Infwmation and-
link, there are cliniatic reasons, why people of Kashmir do not very frequently travel outside Communication
the valley. It is not surprising, that their knowledge of other regions in the country has been
inadequate and vice versa. Since early 70s, however. the introdution of television in the
valley has made a tremendous difference. Kashmiris are now able to have glimpses of all
parts of the country and an understanding of the cultural mosaic of the entire people. It is,
therefore, not difficult to imagine that Doordarshan programmes would have helped create,
among the people of Kashmir valley, a vision of India as a whole. What is true of the people
of Kashmir valley, is also true of people living in many parts of the country, who live as
isolated communities in distant locations.

25.6.4 Evolution of Composite Cdlture

The All India Radio, Doordarshan as well as films have the capability of speeding-upthe
process of national awareness. National programmes of music, dance and of drama on the
broadcast media, i.e., radio and television support the concept of composite culture and of
exchange of literary and artistic forms between one region and anotner. The influence of
media, in the evolution of a composite culture, may have been subtle, but it is an important
Comment on the following very briefly.
i) Media can help create a serla. bf belonging and national integration.

ii) Through understanding and appreciating each other's culture, we can help evolve a
composite culture.

iii) Cultural isolation leads to p~ejudice.


In this unit, you have studied the importance of information and communication, especially
the role of media in :
providing information and creating social, political and economic awareness which is so
necessary for the democratic process:
extending educational opportunities, creating an educational environment and making
education more meaningful.
promoting mutual understanding and appreciation of each others' culture, leading to
national cohesion and a national composite culture.

I What are the h c t i o n s of communication in a social, system?



Describe the role of AIR and Doordarshan in education.

Briefly comment on the following :

i) Freedom of expression is a prerequisite for democracy.

......... ............................................................................................. ..........- .....................................
ii) In order to participate in the political process, people need information.


iii) Mass contacts have their own in communication.


Information and
25.9 ANSWERS Communidtion

Self-Assessment Questions
1 Rural-in banking, raising loans etc.; in the use of adequate fertilisers; formation of
Urban-consumer rights. You can expand the answer further.
2 i) adult franchise; ii) speech, expression;
iii) interpersonal communication; iv) objective, political issues.
3 Hints
i) communication through discussions, newspaper articles, could help women become
aware of their rights to obtain education and equal job opportunities.
ii) communication can play a major role in national integration; in spite of belonging
to different religious groups and communities, people still have a common thread
connecting them.
4 You could talk about the role of communication in :
i) extending educational opportunities through distance education; open universities
air. examples.
ii) enriching learning experience by means of radio and TV programmes.
iii) creating a learning environment by extending knowledge to deprive men, women
and children of all ages on a large variety of topics.
5 Hints
i) for example people in one part of India can know and see diverse cultural groups
on TV and realise the great diversity and unity in our cultural heritage.
ii) by appreciating each other's culture we can leave out the undesirable features and
adopt the good points of other cultures. The exchange of literary dnd artistic forms'
between diverse groups can lead to a composite culture.
iii) for example if two religious groups do not interact, each group has a very wrong
idea about the other's customs. This often leads to severe conflicts of various kinds.
Terminal Questions
1 You could discuss your answer:

The main role of communication in a social system is receiving and conveying

information to individuals or groups of people through various modes like TV,radio,
newspaper, public meeting etc. It helps to motivate individuals or groups towards a
course of action, provides entertainment; influences public opinion; makes people
aware of their rights and privileges and helps them to improve their economic and
social conditions.
2 For instance, AIR and Doordarshan broadcast educational programmes for genera1
awareness as well as syllabus based programmes for schools and colleges. They
broadcast adult education and agriculture-based programmes for the rural population.
They also help to create a desire to know more and thus tend to improve the educational
3 i) For example, if a citizen does not have the freedom to discuss important issues and
to elect the person, that he or she feels capable of doing certain jobs, then how can
a democracy function?
ii) Part of the political process is electioneering. For instance, if you want to vote for
somebody you must have information on their past records, policies and promises
before opting for them. This shows how important information is, for the whole
process to function.
iii) For example, to communicate ideas about a particular form of dance or music,
lecture demonstration can be held at mass meetings. This form of contact' appears to
be a useful method of communication.
26.1 Introduction
26.2 Mass Communication
A Historical Perspective
Media of Mass Communication Today
Effective Media in the Indian Context
26.3 Technological Advances in Mass Communication
State of Communication in the Past
Communication Revolution
26.4 Social and Economic Impact of Modem Communication Technology
26.5 New World Information and Communication Order
The Old Order .
How the Concept of the New Order Developed
Controversies Around NWICO
Relevance of NWICO in Our National Context
26.6 Summary
26.7 Terminal Questions
26.8 Answers

In the previous Unit, you have studied the role of mass media in national development. In
this Unit, we shall describe various means of mass communication in their historical
perspective and also the role that technology has played in making media available to the
vast masses of our country. We shall also discuss the impact of information technology on
culture; as well as in the social and economic spheres.
Information plays a very important role in international relations. With proper
communication between peoples of different countries, information can be an instrument of
understanding and sharing of knowledge. However, the collection and dissemination of
information is, today, in the hands of a few international h s , leading to unequal sharing of
information. Hence, the need for a New World Information and Communication Order,
which would make it possible to have a balanced and equitable sharing of information
between the developed and the developing countries. Taking note of the relevance of the
'New Order' in our own context, we would discuss how we could improve our national
communication order, leading to better understanding between different groups and sections
of people, and to the emergence of a composite culture.

After studying this Unit, you should be able to :
understand the historical perspective in which these media grew and their role and
effectiveness in the Indian context,
describe the role of technology in mass communication,
appreciate the impact of il~formationtechnology in socio-economic and cultural spheres,
realise the importance of balanced and equitable sharing of information and the relevance
of New World Infomation and Communication Order.


The well-known exponent of the role of mass media in development, Dr. Wilbur Schramm,
who headed a team of experts to advise the development of infrastructure of information in
~ndiaand the establishment of thg Indian Institute of Mass Communication had a meeting Modes of
with our first Prime Minister, Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru, in 1962. Later, Schramm described the
meeting in these words: "This was on an afternoon when Mr. Nehru was relaxed, happy. He
asked me, By the way what is this mass communication? I do not think 1 understand it very
well' and I said 'But Mr. Prime Minister, you are the chief mass comrllunicator of India'. I
mentioned the crowds of hundreds of thousands, books and broadcasting. He threw back his
head and laughed, 'Oh that' and said, ' I guess I do know something about it'. Nehru poked
fun at the electronic system, the loud-speakers that would not work or gi7 out of order before
half of his long speeches were over. Then he said something that I never forgot. He said,
"Thiswill help us to talk together"
Wilbur Schramm, later, underlined the words-'this will help us to talk together'. The
words are important, because they bring out the meaning of inter-personal communication in
Indian society and indicate the emergence of mass communication, i.e., communicating with
a large number of people.
As you perhaps know, mass communication in India began without the use of electronic
media, like radio and television. The beginning can be traced back to communication within
a social group. For example, a village panchayat has been and continues to be a centre.
Similarly, religious gatherings, whether at a place of worship or when organised on special
occasions have, from time immemorial, functioned as centres of communication. Then, there
are any number of fairs and melas where people in large numbers gather together to ,
communicate on a variety of subjects (see fig. 26.1).

Fig. 26.1. A puppet show-traditional means of communication

26.2.1 A Historical Perspective
Role of communication during our freedom struggle has been briefly discussed in the
previous Unit. But it must be said here, that Gandhiji was the greatest communicator the
country has produced. Those of us, who were there to attend some of his prayer meetings,
will recall the influence his addresses at these meetings exercised on the minds of the
I people. He was not an impressive public speaker, in the conventional sense. He did not
indulge in rhetorics, bqt used popular language. His language and idiom were the same, as
of the oidinary people of India. He shared his th~nkingwith his audience; he did not appear
to impose his ideas. Above all, he spoke with conviction and with genuine concern for the
welfare of all human beings. Sincerity and simplicity characterised his communication with
the people. Gandhiji's message reached the length and breadth of the country. It may be
called that during his satyagraha, Gandhiji was able to involve ordinary men and women
from all walks of life. Take the 'Salt Satyagraha' in 1930. Salt is consumed in every home.
When Gandhiji decided to launch a satyagraha against the tax on salt and to make salt from
sea-water, it was a unique strategy in communication, of which there are few parallels in the
world. The peoples' boycott of the British goods brought into sharp focus the economic and
political aspirations of the people and strengthenedtheir resolve to fight agaifist the foreign nllr.
Infotmatbn, Knowlcdgo. SAQ 1
~nslght Classify the following as p e ~ n acommunication
l (P)or as mass communication (M).
i) Your discussion with your friend regqrding the performance of India in a
cricket test match.
i *
ii) lndira GandhilNational Open University sending study mat)erials to the
iii). Gindhiji's address in the prayer meeting.
f v l Editorial of a newspaper.

26.2.2 Medh of Mass C o ~ u n i d i o R - T d a y r

Today, while the inter-personal communication continues to play bn impfhnt mk m aro.
- country, we have a developed media system. In the media of mass comm'~icrtion,we
All India Radio, Doordarshan, newspapers and journals and films in various lPnettryler A
brief reference to the role of each medium may be in order. '1'
, '
All India Radio
All India Radio has had a history of nearly 60 years. Today with 91 broadcastiqg stathas
and 167 transmitters, AIR'broadcasts can reach nearly 95 per cent of India's ptpulat@ .
What is called the transistor revolution in early 60's, was largely responsible for e x p d l q
the effectiveness of radio broadcasting, because it made receivers cheaper and really . .
portable. The daily programme output from all the transmitters is more thhn 15.00 ~ Q W )
day, in all national languages and in many dialects. Programmes for women and the ~d
listeners are carried by more than 60 stations. A 'large number of stations brosdcaet
programmes for youth, children and other special groups. Since there is no licenaiq d m
sets now, an exact figure of the number of radio sets in the country is difficult to give. ' .
Perhaps the total number of radio sets in the country is apund 50 million. It hm ban '
claimed on behalf of All India Radio,'that the number of people listening to radio
programmes is over 200 million (see fig: 26.2). The radio sets are comparrti* .

~ Flg 26.2 Even today the d i o is om of h e must effective Md pquhr wdium d

inexpensive and for their operation they do not have to depend u p the avaWiM$af' .
haasehald power supply, many of them work on dry cells. All them factors make AH
Radio as the most extensive medium of mass communication in the counb.
- ,
Doordarshan began only in 1959, as a small experimental set-up. It ured Db hrva*jl$r)
programmes in a week for one hour every day. Till 1972, the only TV c%!ntmin t b'
was in New Delhi, with a coverage of about 60 km.radius around the station. TV centres in . Modes of
Bombay, Srinagar and Amritsar came in 1973 and 1974. But the year 1975 turned out to be Communication'
a land mark in the development of TV in India. Centres were set-up in Calcutta, Madras and
Lucknow. More importantly, during this year, the satellite mode of transmission of TV
programmes was first used in India. The idea was to transmit a TV programme to a satellite
which appeared stationary to an observer on the earth; it went round the earth in the same
period of 24 hours as the earth took to turn on its axis. The satellite received these
programmes and transmitted them back to the earth so that large areas could receive them.
I Since the programmes were educational in content the whole arrangement was called the
II Satellite Instructional Television Experiment (SITE). The programmes cou!d be received
by special sets installed in six states in the country with approximately 400 sets in each state.
The states were: Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Karnataka. Orissa, Gujarat and Rajasthan. An
interesting feature was that the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) was made
responsible for the transmitters as well as for the setting up and maintenance of the sets.
Since the whole experiment was carefully monitored, like a scientific experiment, many
important things about the language, the presentation and the content of the programmes
were learnt.
The next milestone in the expansion of TV was the coverage of the Asian Games in
November 1982. In order to provide opportunities to people in several paks of the country to
view the games, 20 low power transmitters were installed. Again a satellite was used to
enhance the coverage. In the same year, Doordarshan started colour transmission for the first
time. India's own multi-purpose satellite, INSAT-lB, was launched in August 1983. At the
time of launching of the satellite, the then Prime Minister, late Mrs. Indira Gandhi said: "We
are launchink our satellite and developing our television network to take advantage of TV to
entertain and enlarge awareness. Radio and Television, particularly in a national network are
both ideal media to reinforce national integration. At the same time, they have immense
potential to put new life into regional art forms. Communication poses a major challenge
and opportunity to us. We need people of imagination to take this up" This, in a way, sums
up the role assigned to the TV medium, to inform, educate and entertain, besides creating
national awareness.
The availability of INSAT-1B and the use of low-power transmitters and direct broadcast
receivers in some places determined the future TV expansion. In July 1983, the Government
of India sanctioned a gigantic scheme for the expansion of the network involving 680
million rupees. Before the scheme was launched, there were only 45 TV transmitters,
potentially covering 28 per cent of the population. The expansion plan raised the number to
180, and a potential coverage to above 70 per cent. By the end of the seventh Five Year Plan
(1990) the number of transmitters and coverage will be further enhanced.
1 Films
Films are an important medium for communication. We produce over 800 films every year
and are, probably, the largest producers of films in the world. The Films Division of the
Government of India produces news reels, news magazines and documentary films, while
commercial films are ~roducedin the private sector. Commercial films claim to have social
themes, but, in fact, most of them are entertainment, and that too of not a very high standard.
1 Themes dealing with violence and sex in pictorial presentation may attract the audiences for
I the moment but do not bring about "a social change" or awareness. This may be a

, controversial statement and you can have your own views on this subject. However, there is
yet another constraint in the effectiveness of films as a medium of mass communication and
that is the limited number of cinema houses in the country. The number is estimated to be
I .only 12,000. For a population of 800 million this is, indeed, very small.
Newspapers and Journals
Newspapers and journals have an important role in o w communication system. The number
uf newspapers and periodicals in various languages was about 22 thousand in 1984 and their
total circulation was about 6 million. However, there are two points to be considered in
assessing the effectiveness of newspapers in communication. First, only the literate
population can take advantage of the newspapers, even though in certain situations, the
literate persons also share information with others. And, secondly, the reach of newspapers
in distant and remote areas is restrained by problems of transportation etc. Circulation of
newspapers is still largely confined to metropolitan towns and other urban centres. However,
the credibility of the printed word in o w society is very strong. People are more gullible than
discerning in this respect. Also, the newspapers and journals are mostly free from
gQvemment control and.claim better acceptance by the people. This statement, can be

Information, Knowledge, challenged because a number of newspapers indulge in sensational news and views which
Insight may attract the readers, but may not f&lp hkEi to understand news and views in a larger
perspective. The essence of the matter is that whether it is radio listening, or TV viewing or
newspaper reading, the receiver of the message, that is people in this case, has to have a
critical judgement of its own.

SAQ 2 '

Choose any two media of mass communication described in the text. Discuss their
advantages, and limitations.

UNESCO stands for United

Nations Educational Scientific
26.2;3 Effective Media in the.Indian Context
and Cultural Organisation. What then is the most effective and suitable system of information and communication in
India? Perhaps a simple answer is that each medium should expand evenly to reach even
more vast audiences, and besides providing entertainment, should have social relevance.
The view is important, because in the present spread of media, there are imbalances and
inequalities. Certain regions are served better than the others. States like Bihar and Orissa,
which are economically backward are also inadequately served by the media. There is a
noticeable variation between the urban and the rural population. The media of mass
communication are centred primarily in the urban areas. The number of radio and TV sets,
newspapers and the films, all have a high concentration in towns. The rural population, i.e.,
70 per cent of the population of India, have much less share in all these media. This is also
the reason for an urban bias in the approach and content. A much higher percentage of
programmes, writings and themes concern the urban population.
If we go by our experience, the ideal system of communication may be a combination
between the media of mass communication and what has been referred to as inter-personal
communication. Let us cite an example. AIR had launched a UNESCO spqnwred
experiment of Radio Rural Forum in the State of Maharashtra in L956. Under this
experiment, groups were organised in a number of villages. The groups or forums, as they
were called, brought together some enterprising farmers to listen to the radio programmes
especially designed for them by AIR, Pune. The participants discussed the contents and
interacted among themselves. They sent their reactions to the broadcasdng station.
According to a study report, the most significant aspect of the experiment was "the stirrings
it aroused in the minds ofthe people and the ring of sincerity and the note of inquiry it lent
to their voice". Organised group discussions, on an equal footing for all participants, were
an entirely novel experience for these villagers. It was only after first two or three meetings,
that the age-old convention was broken off, allowing only the elders and the so-call9d
respectable persons to participate in discussions.
The stimulating atmosphere of group listening enabled the participants to assert their rights.
The hundreds of decisions taken, the wells dug, the pure-bred bulls and Leghorns bought,
theparketing societies and balwadis established, all bear witness to the effective role of the-
radio community forum.
The radio programmes were supported by discussions, as well as printed and visual
materials on the same theme. The experiment was a great success. The conclusion, that a.
modem medium; supported by inter-personal communication and other aids like posters,
slides etc., can be most effective. clearly stands out.
Name two important factors which should be considered while choosing effective media of
mass communication in our country.
Modes of-
Technology has contributed to major advances in mass communication. Let us see what was
the state of communication in the past and what are the possibilities today.

26:3.1 State of Communication in the Past

Those of us who have experience of life in remote villages, far away from urban centres, are
familiar with such features as poor roads which often become impassable during the rainy
season,unreliable.and irregular postal services, non-existence of telephone facilities and a
very small number of individuals who can read and write. What could possibly be the
communication links for such a village with the outside world? The answer would perhaps
be, the radio and visits of extension workers. The radio is also not available in every
household. In such a situation, it is not surprising, if the people turn inwards and become
apathetic or even fatalistic about their economic and social life. Clearly, for a developing
country like ours, this is not a very happy situation. Does this situation exist even now?
The scenario is undergoing change. Most of our villages have their own institutions like
Panchayats.and schools which sometimes function as community centres. A number of them
may have the facility of a telephone connection and if they are electrified, they may have a
TV set at the community centre or even in a few households. Even so, the traditional forms
of communication like folk music or folk drama, and communication from person to person
still dominate the communication system. These traditional media can also be utilised for
economic development and social awakening.

26.3.2 Communication Revolution

It is in this background, that communication revolution is being ushered in ou: country. In
the recent years, the rural people who have access to TV viewing, might have seen on the
T V screen, Doordarshan's coverage of landing of man on the Moon. They are all too
familiar with the Doordarshan's simultaneous transmission of national events like the
Independence Day and Republic Day celebrations, i.e., they are watching the programme, at
the same time, as the events are taking place in the national capital. But the viewers are
scarcely aware of the transmission mode through satellite which makes such a thing
Satellite transmission is one important symbol of revolution in communication technology.
Besides transmitting picture and sound over long distances, it has revolutionised
telecommunicaiion, telephone, telegraph etc. (Fig. 26.3). Already, from a number of towns
in India, we can make long distance telephone'calls not only to other towns within the
country but also to several towns in other countries through direct dialling, i.e., without the
help of a telephone operator. In fact, for remote places like Leh, Port-Blair and Aizwal

Fig. 26.3: INSAT-I System Utilisation

which are separated by Jea or difficult terrain, satellite transmission offers the only viable
afid feasible means of linkage. The Satellite Instructional Television Experiment (SITE)
conducted in our country during 1975-76 was possible only with the help of an American
satellite, but in 1978, Government af India decided to launch its own programme of
Information, Knowledge, multi-purpose satellites for expanding the communication network in the entire country.
Insight INSAT- 1A was launched in 1982, but it developed technical snags. INSAT- 1B was then .
launched in 1983, and INSAT-1C in 1988. These satellites have been providing widespread
coverage to the media, in addition to many other services like in the fields of mete~~ology,
resource surveys, telecommunication,and research etc. (Fig. 26.4; 26.5)


,. - -n

Fig. 26.4: Disaster Wamidg System Concept.

\ @.


Fig. 26.5: Satellite Based Rural Telegraph Network (SBRTN).

The other most important component of communication technology is the computer. The
computer, which started as a "calculation machine", is today called the "electronic brain".
The area of its utilisation had been vastly extended. Simply put, a computer receives, stores
and analyses almost any kind of data, and in vast quantities. It can process information wiih
incredible speed. Computers can accept or reject messages, reduce or expand them, file
them, index them or answer back with their own messages. In fact, the computer has '
transformed man's access to ana use of information on any subject. The price of computers
has come down due to new technologies of manufacture, and they are already finding places
in offices and homes.
Broadly, it is the convergence and integration of telecommunication technology, computers
and satellites which have brought about a revolution in communication systems. The three
together have transformed broadcasting, telephone system, business operations and even the
social and personal life of individuals.
Modes of
P W d ~Grn-tion Techniques Co#hmunication
SWleSwleof.the novel services which are being introduced in coimmes like the United States
a &pan;b which may be used on a wider scale in the next decade or so afe as follows :
a ~i&wphonts for W n g on phone, where picture will be carried in addition to the sound.
. ifanep m p u t e ~which would help in buying all necessities sitting at home after the
rrrcosmellt of prices and availability in shops, transferring funds, buying and selling
, &afe,.knowing all the latest information of weather, transportation, schedules of
&dines, trains, etc.; hotel reservations and so on.
0 , Tektex which is the enhanced telex services at high, eeds, transferring whole texts
, Jling both uppcr and lower case letters.

Videotext which is the two-way interacthe computerised data retrieval service using
$lightly modified television receiver and telephone line (Fig. 26.6).
1 Users'



I tekvision

W: V-xt is a W~-wr?ysystem allowing subscribers to get ~nformationvia telephone cables,

uble n,
or a combination of the two. Subscribers can also respond via a home computer.
Tdetext which is a one way system used for the transmission o f limited number of pages
by television stations, receivable or ordinary television sets, with a suitable plug-in
&@or (Fig; 26.7).
7 --
- I


& Data base

%% 'bbtext b 8 laviain which provided to subscribers from the source via television signals.
. Rw rubrribers m i v e the data on theu television sets.
T@efaxwhich is an electronic mail service used to transmit documents from one
' hc&dc (pictun) system to another via the telephone network.
r)#ukxwhich is a digital high speed facsimile service over the public data networks.
?his includes error connction and automatic opemtion.
?lmc tire all the possibilities within reach in some of the developed countries. It will be
@b s o d h e befon deveI+g countries can think of uslng these techniques. However,
- teletex), is k i n g &on a limited scale in India. .
Fm-4- ;
In- tvdme two ways in which INSAT-IB has enabled you to get information which would
not have been possible &wise.
hformation, ~ n o w l e d ~ e ,
b) Which of the future communication techniques would be most useful in the lndian ,
context and why?



Quite obviously a society which will utilise advanced communication technology in the
ways mentioned above, would develop an entirely different social and economic system. It
would be a transformed society with an entirely different life style. Besides the impact on
industry, administration, public institutions and social services, even family life would
undergo change. Using new technology, newspapers are already being published
simultaneously from many cities, railway and airline bookings are being made by computers
that carry booking information updated every moment, doctors in one country can treat
patients in another, conferences can be held with people sitting in their own offices; these
are wonderful developments. We have mentioned, in Block 3, how communication and
remote control of devices have made it possible to land a craft on the moon and to fly it back
with a sample of moon soil, entirely automatically. Entire factories are being run
automatically, by robots in the advanced countries. All this communication revolution is
there, but the main question, however, is whether the advance communication technology
will, in fact, benefit all countries equally and all sections of our people equally. There is
already reason to believe that the advanced countries not only have q monopoly of
technology of communication, but also the power to'distort and display information in the
way they like. Moreover in any one country, those who already have greater access to
information are likely to benefit more than the others-probably making the rich-poor
divide sharper. A simple example is advertising on TV or other media, which can create a
demand for things we do not need, or promote a culture of superficial westernisation. Of
course, it allows the bigger firms to beat smaller ones which cannot spend equally on
The impact of information technology on our traditional communication system has also to
be considered. In other words, what impact will the new'communication technology have on
our traditions and culture? In our country, traditional forms of communication have been
used for such purposes as dispellirig superstition, outmoded perceptions and unscientific
attitudes. These have been found effective and acceptable to the people because people are
familiar with them. Practitioners of the traditional media use a subtle form of persuasion by
presenting the message in artistic and yet all too familiar forms. Examples abound where
song, drama, dance groups and thelike are used to campaign against social evils or for
advance in farming, health, nutrition and family welfare.
The task before our communication system is touse the traditional media whether they are
local folklores, ballads and story telling or even such proverbs which have their origin in our
mythology. Jatra in West Bengal, Burrakatha in Andhra Pradesh, Villuppatu in Tamil Nadu,
Tamasha in Maharashtra or Alha and Qawwali in Utter Pradesh, all have the capability of
being used for eradicating social evils and for encouraging peoples' participation in
development programmes. Some of these forms were effectively used in our freedom
struggle to awaken national consciousness.
We have to examine the implications of the effect of sophisticated communication
technology on these forms which, besides their effectiveness, are an integral.pafl of our
cultural and social life.
SAQ5 .
What are the other functions ot traditional media aDart from entertaining the masses?
................................................................................. :..-............................................................ Modes 01


It is quite obvious that information plays an important role international relations. As a
means of communication between the peoples of different *unties, information can be an
instrument of understanding and sharing of knowledge. It can bring about amity through
appreciation of problems of the people living in different societies. To mrform this role,
information dissemination should be multi-directional,multi-dimensional and equitable. In
other words, information through mass media like radio, television, newspapers, journals,
books and films should have a free and balanced flow around the world, between countries
and between one region and another.
But, if only a few international firms, or transnational organisations are in control of
collecting and disseminating information, or a few powerful radio and television networks in
the world control flow and choice of information, the flow of information can neither be
balanced nor equitable. It will then tend to serve the interests of those who control the

26.5.1 The Old Order

Let us look at the present position. Almost 80 per cent of the world news-flow emanates
from the major transnational news agencies like the Reuters. Associated Press, United Press
International and Agence-France-Press. These agencies which are based in UK, USA and
France devote no more than 20 per cent of news coverage to the developing countries where
two-thirds of the people of the world live. Moreover they distribute news q seen by
American, British or French eyes! The imbalance in other information resources is equally .
flagrant. In the distribution of the radio frequency spectrum between the few developed
counties and the many developing ones, the situation has been equally disturbing. The
developed countries control nearly 90 per cent of the radio spectrum. The countries which
arrived late in utilising radio thus discover that the ground is already occupied by those who
arrived early! In television software, the western domination is reflected in yet another way.
A number of developing countries still do not have the capacity to produce television
programmes of their own, and they are obliged to broadcast a large number of western
programmes which are culturally discordant. In book publishing too, the picture is similar.
Even in a country which has great material and intellectual resources, most of the books and
journals which are used in universities are in English and naturally represent a particular
manner of understanding and interpreting reality. If you think merely changing over to
Indian languages will help, you should think again. What really needs io be done is top class
thinking and research on our problems, our society and environment. Only then suitable
books can be written in our own languages.

26.5.2 How the Concept of the New Order Developed?

This realisation of western media domination, and a growing sensitivity to the way the Third
World counties are projected in the western media, have together formed the basis of a call Bandung is a city in Indonesia. The
for a New World Information and Communication Order (NWICO). conference which is famous for
enunciating the five principles of
The call for the 'New Order' gathered momentum during the 1970's even though its co-existence "The Pmcheheel" w k
beginning can be traced back to the origin of what may be called the "Third Worldism". The held at the initiative of leadus of
five countries : Nehru (India),
dissolution of the old colonial empires after World War 11, was also the beginning of a new Suliamo (Indonesia), Nasser
awareness in the Third World countries. The Bandung Conference in 1956 was the first (Egypt), Chou En Lai (China). and
forum at which information and cultural imperialism practised by a few western bigpwers Tito (Yugoslavia).
was questioned by many participating counmes:At this confekence, it was surmised that the
western media, which were powerful and pervasive, were highly biased against the interests
and needs of the people living in the developing countrieswhether independent or still
struggling against the colonial rule. It was strongly felt that the reporting in the western
media was negative and unsympathetic to the aspirati6ns of all these people. There wrts
, Lnf~rmsti~n,
Knowledge, resentment against the western media which were and continue to be pbately-owned. These
, Insight media were used both to support the commercial interests of the media organisations and the
global political and economic interests of the big powers.

In 1973, the Non-aligned Summit Conference at Algiers, for the first time, called for co-
operation in the reorganisation of communication systems with a view to establishing direct '
and fast communication between the non-aligned countries. The Summit suggested mutual
exchange and dissemination of information through national and regional channels which
would remove or at least reduce the reliance on the transnational agencies. This was rather a
mild expression of an otherwise deeply felt resentment against the domination of the western
media. Therefore, at that time, the western powers and media controllers chose to ignore it.

Over the years, however, this stand of the non-aligned countries was further amplified. A
more specific concept of cooperation was developed and the non-aligned countries decided
to set up an ~nst~tution
for exchanging of news among themselves. In 1976, the first ever
conference of the information ministers and representatives of news agencies of the non-
aligned countries, was held in New Delhi. The Conference expressed its determination to
rectify the imbalance and concretise arrangements for effective cooperation in all fields of
information, mass media, social and cultural information. Also, for- thefirst time, a linkage
between political and economic dependence on the one han4and the information monopoly
on the other, was sought to be established. The demand for a new Iliternational Information
Order, through collective endeavours, to safeguard their political and economic
independence was thus set forth. The Colombo Summit, that followed, ratified the
recommendation of the New Delhi Conference. The Summit also gave a call to all non-
aligned and developing countries to co-ordinate their activities in this regard in the United
Nat~onsand other international forums.

UNESCO's involvement in formulation of the New World Informa~ionand Communication

Order needs to be viewed against this background. The General Conference of UNESCO, at
its nineteenth session held in Nairobi in 1976, instructed the Director-General "to undertake
review of all the problems of communication in the contemporary society, seen against the
background of technological progress and recent developments in international relations,
with due regard to their complexity and magnitude". In 1977, the Director-General,
Mr. Amad-Mahtar M'Bow set up a "brain trustt, the International Commission for the Study
of Communication Problems under the presidency of Mr. Sean MacBride. The MacBride
report, as it came to be called, was sent to UNESCO Director-General in 1980, although its
Interim Report had been submitted in 1978 to the twentieth session of UNESCO's General
Conference. The Interim Report itself generated some controversy, but what brought
UNESCO into focus was the Mass Media Declaration of 4978 -"On Fundamental
Principles concerning the contribution of the Mass Media to Strengthen Peace and
International Understanding. The Promotion of Human Rights and to Counter Racialism,
Apartheid and Incitement to War".

Article VI of this Declaration rays: "For the establishment of a new equilibrium and greater
reciprocity in the flow of information, which will be conducive to the institution of a just
and lasting peace and to the economic and political independence of the developing
countries, it is necessary to correct the inequalities in the flow of information to and from
developing countries and between those countries. To this end, it is essential that their mass
media should have conditions and resources enabling them to gain strength and expand, and
to cooperate both among themselves and with the mass media'in developed countries."

Some of the Western countries expressed strong reservation about another resolution which
recommended a direct involvement of UNESCO in international communication. However,
the 1980 General Conference of UNESCO held in Belgrade approved the Final Report of
the MacBride Commission. The Resolution on the New World Information and
Communication Order, which w'as accepted after hard and protracted discussion covered a
wide range of issues, such as:

elimination of the imbalances in information flow,

elimina6on of negative effects of monopolies,
* removal of internal and external obstacles to free and wider flow of information,
0 freedom and responsibilities of journalists,
improving the capacity of developing countries to improve their own infrastructures.
Besides, mention was made on protecting the cultural and social diversities and identities of Modes of
world public. The point to be underlined is, that while the Resolution called for freedom for Communication
all professionals in fhe media, it reiterated that freedom is inseparable from responsibility.

Give two reasons which led to the demand for a New World Information and
Communication Order.

..,-. --

26.5.3 Controversies Around the NWIG0

The definition of the New World Information and Communication Order given above has
been objected to by some of the Western countries. In the United States particularly, there
has been a strong reaction against it. Their interpretation is that the Resolution imposes
restrictions on the activities of journalists, that it hampers the "free flow" of information as it
has come to be established and that it legitimises control of government on information.
Hardliners have called it as "interfering with the fundamental right to be freely informed".
This interpretation, quite obviously, is not correct. The view of the Third World and
SocialiSt countries is that the NWICO only challenges the monopoly enjoyed by the western
media, and the projection of their political views, for example, on peace or cold war; biases,
sometimes racist biases and propaganda, plus painting a negative and prejudiced picture of
happenings such as floods, famines, political and social problems in the developing
countries, without any regard to either the achievements or sensitivities of the people in '
these countries. On this point one may quote from Mrs. Indira Gandhi's address at the
Namedia* Conference (1983). She said, "In the media of the West, or indeed in our own, Namedia was inaugurated by Mrs.
Gandhi in 1983 at the time of non-
there is hardly any news about the developing countries unless it be of disaster or
aligned meet in Delhi. The
disturbance. The stupendous task of development, the changes coming about in our villages, organisation deals with problems of
towns, amongst our women, might as well be non-existent. Editors and media managers communication of the developing
seem attached to the Northcliffe formula that power, position, money and sex make the news countries including India. It has
and that virtue, normality, hardwork and humility don't. The meek may one day inherit the undertaken different research
projects and has discussed problems
earth, but not the headlines".
of communication both at national
The controversy about NWICO became so sharp, that the US Government cited this as one and international levels.
of the three reasons for their decision to quit UNESCO in 1984. They held UNESCO
responsible for pushing through the NWICO. Great Britain also withdrew from UNESCO, a
year later, for the same reasons. The withdrawal by USA and UK has resulted in a combined
loss of over 30 per cent of UNESCO's budget. But all this shows what a powerful
instrument or weapon information is for progress and social change.
Progress in the implementation of NWICO has, indeed, been slow. UNESCO's capacity to
provide help has been considerably reduced. Some of the other western countries continue to
oppose it. On the other hand, there .is some progress in improving channels of
communication and mutual cooperation among the developing countries and there is
realisation on the part of the western media, of the strong resentment in the third world
against their style of reporting. This has brought about a slight change in their attitude.

26.5.4 Relevance of NWICO in Our National Context

If removing world imbalance in information flow is the primary objective of the New Order,
we need to examine and improve the situation within our own country also. The conditions
prevailing in India are in some ways typical and in varying degrees they are also shared by
other developing countries. Nearly 75 per cent of our population lives in villages where the
literacy rate is much lower than the national average of 38 per cent, and yet the media
concentration is in the urban areas. The number of radio receivers may now be around 50
million. but three-fourth of the total number are located in urban areas. Distribution of TV
sets would be even more imbalanced. Besides, a high percentage of Radio and TV
programmes are meant for the urban population and taste. The same story is repeated in the
circulation of newspapers and the availability of cinema houses for public exhibition.
Newspapers and filins also largely cater to the urban population.
Information, Knowledge, To remove these imbalances and to make the media available to @e entire population on an
Insight equitable basis, a new communication policy needs to be evolved. As a part of the policy.
the media.should cater to the needs of all sections particularly the sections which are under-
privileged. Information relevant for them and useful for them'ought to be made available in
educative as well as entertaming programmes, with a high artistic sense. Removing
ignorance, superstition and prejudice of all kinds ought to be a task of high priority.
Programmes to motivate people to organise action in order to meet their multifarious
requirements, rather than to depend on the Government for everything should be given
priority. National objectives of socialism, secularism and democracy must be constantly
presented in a great variety of formats, not crudely and directly but in subtle ways known to
writers and artists. Thus, our own communication order would make a mighty contribution
to India's resurgence.

In this unit, we have :
defined what mass communication is and described various means of mass
described the role technology has played in the communication system and stressed that
the benefits of mbdem information technology should not remain confined to a small .
section of urban people, thus widening the gap between the rich and poor or the urban
and the rural. Technology should also not damage our traditional forms of
communication which are the symbols of our regional as well as national culture.
discussed the need for balanced and equitable flow of information between the developed
and the developing countries which has led to the demand for a New World Information
and Communication Order; and the ways in which NWICO can help in mutual
understanding at the national and international levels.


1 How does modem information technology affect the life style of individuals and the

2 What, in your opinion, are the rights and responsibilities of the communication system in
our country at present?

3 Why is it important to have a balanced and equitable flow of information?Why was the 'Old
Order' not acceptable to developing countries?

Self-Assessment Questions
1 i) P ii) P iii) M iv) M
2 For example, if you choose newspaper as a medium of mass communication the advantage
would be that it has circulation in different 1anguages:It usually contains infotmation not
controlled by the government. So it is more acceptable to general masses, The
disadvantages, however, are that it is useful for t@ literate people only. It may not reach
remote areas. So the circulation is not as wide as some other medium would be.
3 a) The medium of communication should be able to reach all groups and sections of the
b) It should be cheap so that it is accessable to every one, for instance radio.
4 a) i) For example, live transmission of events to all parts of the country over television.
ii) Long distance calls without the use of operator
iii) Disaster waming systems.
b) Home computers or telefax could be very useful in my opinion, you could of course
5 You could think of these functions.
Social awakening; campaigning against social evils; for adult education.
6 Because of western media domination and a growing sensitivity to the way the Third
World Countries were projected in the western world.
Terminal Questions
1 Hints: The individual is better informed about his rights and privileges and
opportunities that are available. For example, 'Employment News' publishes about job
Better information about health care on radio & TV.
High profile advertising is affecting the life styles of rural and urban populations,
creating demands on their home ecanomy which might be difficult to meet.
2 Hints: Unbiased, free flow of information, helps in creating a new social order; helps in
economic development.
.3 Refer to sedtion 26.5.

abra cadabra:'magical words.
, anaesthesia: artificially induced insensitivity to pain by some substance.
cadavers: corpse, or dead body.
charkha! spinning wheel.
cognition : the process of perceiving, learning, remembering, using language, solving ,
problems, thinking..
cortex: outer part of an organ like brain, kidney, adrenals.
frontal: front view.
instinctive behaviour: unleamed patterned behaviour characteristic of a particular species.
interpersonal communication: direct interaction between communicators on a one to one
1 basis or in small groups.
1 learning: a relatively permanent change in behaviour as a result of practice or experience.
1 learned reflex: learned or acquired response to a stimulus that normally did not pmduce the
t responseoriginally.
mass communication: public communication transmitted by electronic ormech&ical
means to people who are wjdely dispersed.
medial: middle section.
medulla: central part of some organ.
object permanence: the understanding that objects or peqple continue to exist even if
hidden from-view.
operations: a set of rules for transforming or manipulating information.
receptor: a cell that responds to an environmental stimulus which may be chemical, sound.
light etc.
response: behavioural result of stimulation in a person in the form of movement or secretion
in a gland.
sensorimotor: the first of Piaget's stages in which cognitive development is acquired
through exploration of the worlwrough sensory perception and motor skills.
- -

sense organs: eyes, ears, nose, tongue and skin.

stimulus: any situation or event that evokes a specific functional ,reaction.
union territol.ies: Delhi, Chandigarh, Pondicherry. Andaman & Nicobar.Islands. Dadar
Nagar Haveli. Daman Diu.

p -
p -

1 Biology-A Text book for class XI-XII, part one, NCERT, 1988.
2 Child Psychology-A Text bWk for class XII, NCERT.
3 Psychology: An Introduction to Human Behaviour-A Text book for class XI, NCERl
4 'Text hook of cliild Behaliour and Development', P. Kuppuswamy. Vani Educational
Books (1 984).
5 'Communication Media Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow', P.N. Malhan, Publication
Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Govt . of India (1985).
6 'Communicating', A. Taylor, T. Rosegrant. A Meyer, B. Thomas Samples, Prentice-
Hall, Inc. Englewood Cliff, N. Jersey, 07632 (1977).

Block 1 : History of Science

Unit 1 Science as a Human Endeavour
Unit 2 Science in the Ancient World
Unit 3 Iron Age
Unit 4 The Golden Age of Science in India
Block 2 : Emergence of Modern Science
Unit 5 Science in the Medieval Times
Unit 6 Renaissance, the Industrial Revolution and After
Unit 7 Science in Colonial and Modem India
Unit 8 The Method of Science and the Nature of Scientific Knowledge
Block 3 : Universe and Life -The Beginning
Unit 9 Universe as a System
Unit 10 Exploring the Universe
Unit 1 1 Solar System
Unit 12 Origin and Evolution of Life
Unit 13 Evolution of Man
Block 4 : Environment and Resources
Unit 14 Ecosystem
Unit 15 Components of Environment
Unit 16 The Changing Environment
Unit 17 Natural Resources
Unit 18 Resource Utilisation, Planning and Management
Block 5 : Agriculture, Nutrition and ~ e a l t h
Unit 19 Food and Agriculture
Unit 20 Scientific Possibilities and Social Realities
Unit 2 1 F&od and Nutrition
Unit 22 Health and Disease
Block 6 : Information, Knowledge, Insight
Unit 23 Mind and Body ,

Unit 24 Psychological Aspect of Behaviour

Unit 25 Information and communication
Unit 26 Modes of Communication
Block 7 : Science, Technology and Development
Unit 27 Science and Technology in Industry
Unit 28 ~kchnologyand Economic Development
Unit 29 Modern Development in Science and Technology - I
Unit 30 ~ o d e r nDevelopment
' in Science and Technology - I1
Block 8 : New Perspectives
Unit 31 Perceptions and Aspirations .
Unit 32 Science -The Road to Development
AudioNideo Programmes
Audio : 1) Scieilce and Society (Block I)
2) Astronomical Development in India (Block 3)
3) Measuring Astronomical Distances (Block 3)
4) Evolution of Man (Block 3)
5) The Forest Ecosystem (Block 4)
6)-' Population Pressure (Block 4)

7) Common Misconceptions about Health (Block 5)

8) Human Factors in Engineering (Block 6)
9) New ~nf&mationOrder (Block 6)
-' 10) Technology and Self-Reliance (Block 7)
1 I ) Nuclear Disarmament (Block 7)
Video : 1) Method of Science (Block 2)
2) A Window to the Universe (Block 3)
3) The Story of a River (Block 4)
4) Green Revolution (Block 5)
5) Infectious Diseases (Block 5)
6) Jean Piaget Develdpment stages of a Child (Block 6)
7) INSAT (Block 6)
27.1 Introduction
27.2 The Indian Context
27.3 Technology in Industry
27.4 Economic Development and Self-relrance
27.5 Research and Development in Industry
27.6 Summary
27.7 Tzrrninal Questions
27.8 Answers

A look into the history of mankind tells us that science WAS being put to practical use,
consciousIy or unconsciously, through the centuries. But it was not until the mid-eighteenth
century that the Industrial Revolution in Britain showed what a profound effect advances in
technology can have on.everyday life. The harnessing of energy gave a-boost to
industrialisation. The Industrial Revolution in Britain triggered off similar revolutions in
various other countries,.and the resultant economic progress of these countries has
encouraged the remaining ones to take up rapid industrialisation.
The dominating feature of the contemporary world is the intense cultivation of science on a
large scale, and its application to meet a country's requirements. It is only through the
scientific approach and method and the use of scientific knowledge that reasonable material
and cultural amenities and services can be provided for every member of the community.
And it is out of a recognition of this possibility that the idea of a welfare state has grown.
,.In this unit, we shall take a look into the interdependence between science and industry. We
shall also see how the two together can help us create a welfare state.

After reading this unit you should be able to :
discuss the current status of science and technology in India;
describe the role technology can play in improving productivity, leading to economic
development, I

explain the need for mobemisation of our industrial machinery and processes,
summarise the importance of R & D in industrial growth, and national development,
interpret natibnd devel4mejt hfokation and suggest an approach to solutions of some problems in
tius field.


Science and technology have totally transformed life from what it was in the beginning of
this century, when there were no cars, buses or aeroplanes, no telegraph, telephone, radio or
television, and when medicine and surgery.had not advanced to raise haman life expectancy
to over 50 or 60 years. This has been possible through the gdowth of scientific knowledge,
and related skills, as also by the or anisation of the production of numerous goo&&?As the
Scientific policy Resolution ad^ ted by the Government in 1958) says, such high levels of
production of the basic W a l s needed for a reasonable standard of living for all, have
made it possible to think of a "weJfare" state-which involves management of distrib&on
of goods so that every one can benefit from them. Our Constitution, indeq, s aks-of
socialism which involves "distributive justice" and equality of opportunity to a 1. Without
the help of science and technology, we shall not be able t~ produce enough goods for our
needs. For example, we all know that with the help of a tractor a farmer,can plough far more
Science, Technology and land than shehe can with the help of an ox. ~echarusationincreases the area of ploughed land,
and thus improves human productiv!ty. P

One aspect of the development of science and technology is fuller utilisation of the wealth or
resources with which a country has been endowed. Without science and technology, neither .
could'electricity be generated from the water running in m r r i m s , nor could theoil resources
buried deep under land or sea be tapped,. nor even could our books and newspapers be prhted
on the paper obtained from the forests that we have. Science provides the key for unlock~ng
the wealth of our natural resources.
When we study science, we look into the laws of nature which, in their turn, indicate the
methods of utilising the natural resources of the cQuntry for the production of the necessities
of life and for their efficient distribution. Mere indication of the methods is, however, not
enough. To implement the methods indicated, one has to do work, and here again science
comes to our aid. Science provides power, machines and tools for doing the work; devices of
all types-those for work involving only muscular effort,for work demanding manipulative
skill and, in recent years, even for work requiring briiin & ~ t (Fig. 27.1). Without such aids;
the rate of production would be extremely low and the country would not be able to produce
enough to be wealthy by any standards.

(a) (b) (c)

Fig. 27.1: Dev~cesfor work involving (a) muscular effon ( b ) manipulative,skill (c) brain power

We look at India with about 35% of its people living under the poverty line. The reasons for
tne poverty of the masses In India are:
1) Methods of product~onare out of date by and large. In recent years, however, some
remedial measures have been taken.
Aperson is saidto live underthe 2) Since 2/3rd of the work force in agriculture
- and industry is illiterate, the knowledgeand
poverty line if shehe is not able to skills are very poor. This factor affects production.
provide 1SO0 calslday for herself
or himself. 3j In India, where 70% of the people are engaged in agriculture, the use of methods to
lmprove production i s m the soil and to protect crops 1s not In keeplng W I L ~the actual
4) In agriculture' the small means at the disposal of a farmer and small holdings make it
impracticable to use modem technology.
5 ) Industry, in gqeral, and private industry, in particular, has been unwilline to invest its
profits in modemising the machinew. A typical case is €hatof the-jute industry, which is in
\rev bad shape now.
6) The lndustrial Policy Resolution, which had been adopted at about the same time (1958)
as the Scientific Policy Rebolution. has not been implemented effectively due to a number
of socio-economic and political constraints.
Again, even where the proauction methods have been sought to be upgraded, our unit cost of
production of many items, for example, steel. is much higher. This is mainly due to the low
levels of skill and managenent in our industries.' For instance, Japan and some other
countries import iron ore from India. They have high labour cost but because of the
efficiency of their production systems. thtir unit cost of production is lower than ours.
. . .Further. a curious phenomenon is noticeable. We have imported technology for alloy steels
some 30 years back. But we have been unable to keep pace with the modem developments in
the production of alloy steels through our indigenous efforts. As a result, we still have to
imnort werial steelc from develnned co~~ntriec
But what is a developed country? Try to solve this SAQ and match your answer with the one Science and Technoio@f~ '

given at the end of this unit.
Which of the following countries would you call a developed country? Make a tick mark in
the appropriate box.
i) A country rich in natural resources.
ii) A country with a high per capita income.
+ ...
111) A country with advanced health and social security schemes.
iv) A 'country with a high per capita productivity.
Lead Times of Scientific Development
When we compare the current status of scientific development and technological fall-out
from the same, we find that the lead time of scientific discovery and its applications is much
shorter in the developed countries. This is because of thelr constant efforts of research and
development for technology upgradation which, unfortunately, have been lacking in our
country. It is to be admitted that e v y in developed countries there is a wide variation in the
lead times of different discoveries. These lead times may be quite long in certain cases and
quite short in others. For example, aluminium was first obtained in pure form in 1825 and lt
was only in 1886 that the process of its large scale production was finali5ed. The lead time
in this case was 60 years. On the other hand, the process of hydrogenation of oil in the
manufacture of vanaspati originated in 1905, and by 1911 Procter and Gamble Company,
U.S.A. had placed its hydrogenated cotton seed oil, which is s~milarto vanaspati, on the
market. As you can see, the lead time in this case was very short: only 6 years.
Fig. 27.2 gives us an idea of the lead times of certain inventions.
1953 ,1955 2 yrs Solar battery
8 1951 3 yrs Trans~stor

942 10 yrs Nuclear reactor

1913 18 y rs X-ray tubes

1915 33 yrs Vacuum tube

6 56 yrs Telephone

1886 65 yrs Electrlc motor

1 I

1700 1800 1900 2000

Fig. 27.2: Interval between drscovery and appl~cat~on

m physical sclence (after Ell Grnzberg, "Technology and
Socral Change", Columbra Unrvers~tyPress. 1964).

The lead times of scientific discovery and its applications in the field of computers have
been among the shortest. One can, therefore, say that the application of any scientific
. discovery relates to the needs, or compulsions of the situation. It is also a fact, that this
depends, to a large extent, on the state of industrial d~velopmentof the nation and the
priority given by the nation to that particular area. From the Indian example we can say, that
in such sophisticated areas like nuclear science and technology and nuclear power
production, our lead times have been very short. This was possible as appropriate facilities
were created, resources were made available, and scientific responsibility clearly given to an
, organisation. On the other hand, in agricultural technology, India is one of the

backward countries in the world, in spite of the fact that 70% of our population llves on
agriculture and our primary products are our major foreign exchange earners.
Science, Tcchnokgr and Now, if you have understood the points discussed in this section, you will be able to solve
Dcvclopmcnt this SAQ.

Do you think we have been able to take advantage of the benefits of science and technology?
Give reasons for your answer in 4-5 sentences.


One aspect of technology is that the latest scientific methods are used in prduction. This, in
turn, depends on the availability of the-right type of scientific manpower. We shall e x k i n e
in the next unit (Unit 28) how deeply the question of buying technology or developing it
within our own country is related to the whole question of economic and political
independence. But at this stage it is sufficient to mention that it might seem simple to impon
technology from the developed countries and use it in our own processes of production, but
it is not, in fact, so. It is seen very often that a country from which a technology waS
imported had access to raw materials of a particular type which may not be available in our
country. In other words, it is often necessary, in the absence of a particular raw material, to
substitute it by another, or to modify the process.
To give a common example, earlier the composition of vanaspati, the well-known cooking
and edible fat used to be 95% groundnut oil and 5% seasame oil. About 30 years ago,
groundnut oil was available abundantly. For the last decade or so, both due to paucity of
supply and increase of demand abroad. Indian manufacturer$ had to switch over to other
oils, and in recent years more of these have had to be imported. For example, we now have
dils such as soyabeanoii, Canadian rapeseedoil (Canola) or palm oil imported from U.S.A.,
Canada and Malaysia respectively,as the maor raw material for the vanaspati industry. But
the quality, appearance and other properties of vanaspati have been kept the same, because
of stringent government regulations. So research and development efforts had to be made
by Indian scientists for this adaptation.

Similarly, imported tallow, which was once a major raw material for our soaps and
detergents has been totally banned. Indian scientists had to adopt other oils for preparing the
same quality of soap, and many processes have' been developed. For example, stearine and
tallow substitutes have been prepared from castor oil, (one of our industrial oils) by chemical
reactions. Such examples can be multiplied from other industries. Further, it would not have
been possible to effectively utilise imported technology in many other important industries
without the help of skilled human resource. In this resDect, trairiing of slulled human resource and
maintenance of research laboratones ana organisatlons have played a major role.
From our first five year plan onwards, efforts have been made to increase scientific and
technical human resource by creation of engineering and technology departments in our
universities. We now have about 200 such institutions as against 21 before independence. In
addition to the university departments, six Institutes of Technology (IITs) have been established
qt Kharagpur, Kanpur, Mumbai, Chennai, Delhi and Guwahati. The first five were set up with the
help of developed countries, such as U.S.A., U.S.S.R., U.K. and West Germany. Even before
independence, the three old universities of Calcutta, Bombay and Madras, the Indian Institute of
Science, Bangalore, engineering colleges like that of Roorkee and Bengal Engineering College,
the National Council of Education, the present Jadavpur University, had created many
engineering departments.
However, in practice, industries have retained a lot of dependence on imponed technology.
Often industry prefers to have "turnkey" technology, that is, technology and machines which
can be installed and can start producing on turning a key or pushing a button. Thus, the pace
and character of their development have reduced job opportunities for engineers and
Sclence m d Technology in
technologists who are being trained in our institutions. The result is that many of our skilled ,
technical personnel and scientists have to seek opportunities abroad in developed countries
like U.S.A., 0rU.K. This is called "brain drain". Our ~ o u n ~ ~ l o s e s ~ c rofo rrupees
every year, as the expense incurred o n themining of these persons, and the much needed
technical h u m resource is lost to India.

Technology in Small Scale Industries

Many people have a misconception that application of science and technology is important
only for big industry. Since India consists of more than 600,000 villages, we cannot ignore
the relevance of village and small scale industry for giving employment to a large number of
our population, who are now dependent on primitive methods of agriculture. Science and
technology are equally important in .the ha~dicraftsand small scale Industry. Agriculture,
also. has been moderni5ed with the help of machines like tractors, power tillers, mechanised
harvesters, etc. Bot these attempts have not been very successful, because of educational and
financial constraints, size of land holdings and soc~alstructures.
Improved technology results in improved productivity in terms of cap~talInvestment and
human resource requirement. A t h e same tune it r e d u c ~ the
s job opportunities of a larger number-
of people. We are faced w ~ t ha paradox that, whereas on the one hand we need more jobs for
the bulk of our population who are jobless, on the other, modem mechanised and automated
industries would result in utillsing less tradi~onalhuman skills. Now, how do we resolve this
paradox? One way would be to organlse a network of small or medlum scale i~idustnesand vi!$ ge -
level industries. Then, this network can be used to feed raw materials or intermediates to
large scale industries.
The use of electric power and electronics in small scale and village level indust:ies can make
efficient quality production possible, as has been demonstrated in Japan. There has to be,
therefore, a planning process to make the production methods in village level industries
more efficient by the use of appropriate devices and to use the produce from these industries
as the feed material for large scale production units. This has been dnne partially in India, in
states like Punjab and Haryana in the engineering industry and also, to a smaller extent-; in
other states. The role of technology in improved productivity will always be a major role
and there will be a need for slulled human resource for this. But a part of them may be deployed
in training human resource forthe village'level industries, miniaturisation of machines, and using
the right type of electronic or other devices for working them.
Maintenance of machines in such industries, as also in large scale industries, has always been.
3 neglected area in our country. We have to be very careful about maintenance at all levels.
Infrastructure for creation of skilled human resource already exists in the formof Industrial
Training Institutions, Polytechnics and the training centres of different industries. These
have to be strengthened and re-oriented to serve the present-day needs.
Paucity of capital is one of the difficulties in establishing industries, particularly for small
and medium scale entreprenellrs. However, after the nationalisation of banks and creation of
financial institutions such as lndustrial Development Bank of India (I.D.B.I.), State
lndustrial Development Corporations. Industrial Credit and Finance Corporation, Unit Trust
of India and other financial institutions, nowadays institutional finance is available in the
form of loans to any creditworthy industrial enterprise. Both the Stqte and the Central
Governments are strengthening these institutions through various savings programmes. The
developmeit of such programmes as Science and Technology Entrepreneurship Parks
(STEP) in which new entrepreneurs are helped in testing a new technology on a smaIl scale
through a pilot plant, to gain confidence before they go in for large scale production by
themselves, is also very encouraging. These programmes are assisted by banks. Therefore, a
beginning has been made in the right ditection.
Such improvements in production methods as automation and use of robots have been
demonstrated to be very effective in reducing production cost and, improving the quality of
production. Unfortunately, apart from their being capital intensive, they oppose labour
intensity and create lesser job opportunities. In our country, we have ro have a balanced
approach. We should keep automation for selected areas, particularly, for our export
or;ented areas, and use somewhat older, but still efficient, methods of production, which are
labour intensive, in other areas. So, while the advantages are there, the implications in the
context of our country have to be kept in view and over-mechanisation and over-automation
at this stage of our development need to be avoided.
Science, Technology and TV studio equipment have also been licenced to different industries. This is just one example
of our research programmes leading to industrial growth in related fields. In every field of
scientific activity we find that innovations have paved the way for setting up of new
industries and also the growth of the existing ones.
In fact, the example of Japan can, to a great extent, be a model for us. In the beginning of
this century Japan was a comparatively le5s developed country. They tried to modernise
themselves by importing technology but then they improved the imported technology by:
creatlng R & D facilities for adaptation and further improvement of the imported
creating and sustaining the improvement of technological efforts through their own
scientific manpower originally trained abroad, and
creating a base of sc~entifichuman resource to improve their educational system and training
In 1946. the late Sir Winston Churchill. In a v e y well publicised speech, stated, "The rise'of the
Soviet Union as a super power has been mainly due, not so much to their political system
which might have helped hut to the creation of the right type of institutions for
manpower training. " Japan has again provided an example of how, from a comparatively
undeveloped technological base, they could rise to be one of the most modern technological
nations, offering technology not only to the developing and undeveloped countries, but
even to the developed countries like U.S.A. and U.K.
Therefore, for international competitiveness, and even for survival, there is-need for
nod ern is at ion through our own research and development efforts and with the help of our
own research organisations. One can think of close cooperative effort between government
research laboratories, like those under the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research and
the research laboratories of universities and higher technological institutions.
Our government has realised the importance of indigenous research to promote profitability
and international competitiveness. A number of policy measures were taken to provide
incentives to induce industries to set up in-house R & D units. m y are given certain
facilities for import of raw materials, equipment etc., besides some financial incentives.
These policy measures seem to have worked well, as you can see from Fig. 27.5.



Fig. 27.5: Trends in national expenditure on R & D. (R & D srat~slics1984-85. Dep~.of S & T)
You can alsp see from the charts that a major share of the R & D expenditure in our country
is borne by the government. This situation is different from the one we find in the developed
countries. In those countries a large amount of R & D work is'carried out by the private
industry. The capital spent in financing R &.D units is seen as a good and necessary
investment towards future economic progress of that industry. In India. industry spends a
very mihor fraction of total money spent on research. In Table 27.1 you will find that only Science and Technology in
I1 leading industrial groups account for 86% of the total expe~iditureof R & D incurred by
industry in our country.

Table 27.1 : R & D expenditure by industrial sector 1YU4-85

SI. Industry Group Public Sector Private Sector Industrial Sector

Nu. of R&D Exp. No. of R&D Exp. No. of R&D Exp.
Units (Rs. Iakhs) Units (Rs. lakhs) Units (Rs. lakhs)

I . Electricals & 15 5050.40 11-0 3310.02 135 8360.42

2. Defence Industry 7 5772.63 - - 7 5772.63
3. Fuels 5 56142.12 8 92.27 13 5734.39
4. Chemicals 7 67 1.21- 124 3074.17 13 1 3745.19
(other than
5. Metallurgical 14 ' 1922.62 51 1222.04 65 3144.66
6. Drugs and
7. Industrial Machinery
' 8. Telecommunication
9. Transportation
10. Fertilisers
I I. Textilea
12. Other Croups

Total , 80 23575.50 682 20106.67 762 43682.17

There have also been a number of cooperative research associations in our country. The first
such institute was set up in 1950 in Ahmedabad for the textile industry. There are many
rnoperative research associations now in fields like jute, rubber, tea. wool. c a s h e ~ n u tetc.
Since small industrial units are not able to bnance a complete R & D set-up on their own,
such cooperative efforts are the best way out.
A developing country like ours aims to reduce its technological dependence on other
countries. We shall be able to achieve this by increasing our R & D efforts. Products and
procesges developed in our own country will be based on local raw materials and will take
into consideration other local factors such as weather. In the process, we will also have the
requisite manpower for maintenance as well as further improvement of technology. We
should match our R & D efforts with the objectives and policies of.our country. Apart from
the government laboratories, private industry should take roore and more active part in
research activities. The commercial application of scientific discoveries can be carried out
more easily if there is a direct link between the laboratory and industry. In other words. it
would be better if industrial units have an R & D set up within themselves.
Our indigenous R & D units should try to reduce the threat to our environment through
innovations in industrial proce_sses. Pollution of environment by industries is a very serious
menace in the developed countries. As you know. most of our big indubtries were set up
before the oil prices sky-rocketed in 1973. As a result they rely heavily on oil as their source
of energy. With the unprecedented rise in oil prices, and also taking itito conhideration the
limited world reserves of oil. we should try and look for alternative source\ ot' energy which
will increase our profitability in the long run. Some experiments are being done with holar
energy, and it has a ~ s dbeen put to use in some places. But we haven't yet t.~ppedits full
I t may be noted that the concept of modernisation is integrally related to thc Improvement of
processes and products. But modernisation as mere gimmickry. for cxiunplc.. to introduce
i,computers where one can do without them. or installing remote control co~nmu~iication
systems and'the like can only increase overheads and lead to handicaps in trade. A balanced
approach to modernisation xemb to be the need of the hour. and w e need to \trengthcn our
own-,R & D efforts for this. See if you can do this SAQ now.
Science.Teekmlogy and won't be able to Compete in the international markets. The use of technology also helps
us produce goods on a large scale. This mass production helps to bring down the cost
per unit. If our goods are reasonably priced, they stand a better chance in the
international markets.
3) India should follow the example of Japan. If we keep importing the latest technologies
and do not strengthen our base of R & D, we shall always remain dependent on other
advanced countries. And unless we become self-reliant, we shall have to bow down to
the wishes of these advanced countries even though they go contrary to our ideals. At
the same time we cannot remain isolated. We have to imbibe the latest technology to
fulfil the basic needs of the entire population and to abolish poverty. If we try to acquin
the latest technology entirely through our own efforts, it will take a very long time, and
we may not be able to catch up with other nations.
If some other countries have already developed modem technologies, we should try and
import them to revamp our industry. But once we have imported these technologies we
should keep them up-to-date with our own R & D efforts.
4) There are many reasons for our productivity being lower than the acceptable norms. o n ~
reason is that our industry does not use the latest technologies because of the heavy
investment needed to install modem machinery. Even where modem machinery has
been installed, it is nat being properly utilised since the workforce is not adequately
Sometimes entrepreneurs do not realise the importance of constantly adapting their
technologies and refuse to finance R & D programmes. This adversely affects their
productivity as their counterparts in other countries are able to achieve'a higher
productivity by the use of new production processes.
28.1 Introduction
28.2 Technology Policy
28.3 Technology Transfer
Import of Technology
Lab to F~eld
Export of Technology
28.4 Current Technological Developments
Energy Sector
Some Key Industries
28.5 Limited Access to Technology
28.6 Summary
28.7 Terminal Questions
28.8 Answers

When the Second World War ended in 1945; the political situation changed considerably.
Many colonial countlies that had been struggling to achieve independence got their chance.
Our country became independent in 1947 and, since then, many large and small countries
have won their freedom. The economies of these nations had remained backward due to
exploitation by the colonisers. On achieving independence the question that has faced them
is how to rapidly develop their economies and reform their societies so that their people
have a decent standard of living, and access to basic education and culture. In India also YOU can listen to our audio

there has been considerable debate about what basic policy to adopt in order to ensure rapid programme "Technologytransfer'
at your study centre.
economic and social progress.
As a result of this debate, the Scientific Policy Resolution was drafted and adopted by the
Indian Parliament in 1958. (We have already discussed some aspects of this policy in Unit
s l u t i o n clearly stated that "the wealth and
27) T h ~ m of a nation depends on the
effective utilisation of its human and material resources through industrialisation". The same
resolution further said that "national prosperity depends upon the effective combination of
three factors, namely, technology, raw materials and capital. Of these factors technology is
perhaps the most important". The reason given in the Resolution is that "the creation and
adoption of new scientific techniques can, in fact, make up fm adeficiency in natural
resources and reduce the demands on capital. But technology can only grow out of the study
of science and its applications." In our country numerous steps have been taken to promote
education and science, but a clear statement of our technology policy was made only
in 1983, a full 25 years after the Scientific Policy Resolution.
The Technology Policy Statement is again a clear formulation of tbe realities of the national
and international situation with regard to technology, because, just as technology is essential
ror industrialisation and proper economic development of the country, it is also the field
where interests of many countries clash. For example, to establish our economic strength, we
may need to obtain technology which may already have been developed abroad. But why
should the developed countries, which maintain their economic superiority on the basis of
their technology, help us to cut loose from their intluence and hold? In order to intelligently
follow the crucial problems of our social and economic development, it is necessary to
understand the main features of our technology policy and the situations in which transfer of
technology from one country to another takes place.
In Section 28.2, we discuss 1ndia' policy. 111Section 28.3 we describe the
problems of technology transfer. The current technological developments in some industries
Scknee, Technology and in India is given in Section 28.4. Finally, in Section 28.5, we make a case for making
technology accessible to all levels of our society so that India can really progress as a whole,
and be counted among the developea nations in the future.
After reading this unit you should be able to :
give reasons for the need for developing our own technology,
discuss the aims and objectives of our technology policy,
explain the different aspects of transfer of technology,
list some recent technological developments in a few important Indian industries.
give reasons for the benefits of our technological development not reaching all strata of
our society.


In Unit 7 we discussed the colonisation of India and explained how the ruling country,
B$tain, was able to develop its science, technology and industrial potential to become a
"developed" nation of today, while lndia remained undeveloped and economically
dependent on Britain.
Other colonial nations faced similar situations. When they won freedom, they discovered that
their economies were very strongly bound to those of their previous masters. For buying and
selling their products they were dependent on the "world market" where pricing of goods
was not in their hands, and where numerous discriminatory practices existed. Technological
progress, of which they had been deprived, enabled the indusmalised countries to offer
superior goods at lower prices. And when these ex-colonies wanted to upgrade their
technology by their own research and development effort, or even by purchasing foreign
technology, the response from most of the developed countries was not helpful. Obviously,
'technological superiority ensured dominance over the markets, and hence, technology could
not be given to the colonial countries just because they needed it! On the other hand,
technological deficiencies of the newly independent countries, prevented them from raising
productivity and meeting even the basic needs of their people. This often made the
governments of these countries weak and unstable.
The question of technology has, thus, become a crucial question for all developing countries.
There seems to be only one answer, and that is to develop our own technology, suitable for
our needs and fitting into the pattern of our natural human resources. This requires
identifying our priorities, and steadily pursuing the path that will help us achieve them. A
clear national technology policy is needed, from which there should be no deviation,
irrespective of pressures from the developed countries or the corrupting influence of their
trading partners in our own countries.
Put T or F against each of the following statements depending on whether they are
true or false.
i) Our technology policy should ensure that every Indian's food, clothing and
shelter requirements are met.
ii) A technology policy is the first step towards not being dependent on other nations
for essential goods and services.
iii) A nation's technology policy should be designed to make best use of its human
iv) India should have a technology policy so that we can soon be in a position to
dominate over other nations. '0
In 1983, a Technology Policy Statement was issued by our Government and its very'first
sentence is "Political freedom must lead to economic independence and the alleviation of the
burden of poverty". A crucial paragraph produced below neatly summarises several
important aspects of the Policy:
"The use and development of technOlogy must relate to the people's aspirations. O w w n
immediate needs in India are the att$nment of technological self-reliance, a swift an$
tangible improvement in the conditibns of the weakest sections of the population ana the
speedy development of backward regions. India is known for its diversity. Technology must
suit local needs and, to make an impact on the lives of ordinary citizens. must give constant 'Technology and Economic

I thought to even small improvements which could make better and more cost-effective use of
existing materials and methods of work. Our development must be based on our own culture

I and pe-cnv.lity. Our fgture deynds on our ability to resist the imposition of technology
which is obsolete or unrelated to our specific requirements. and of polic~eswhich tie us to
systems which serve the purposes of others rather than our own, and on our success in
dealing with vested interests in our organizations: governmental, economic, social and even
I intellectual, which bind us to outmoded systems and institutions."
The paragraph mentions "attainment of technological self-reliance" as our immediate need.
This refers to the competence of our scientific and technological personnel,who should be
well-versed in modern knowledge and "know-how". They should be able to innovate
I technology accordiiig to our need. and develop new technology. For example, they should
be able to harness sources of energy. such as solar energy, in which our country abounds: or
they should be able to effectively use the raw materials that we possess in plenty.

...and lastly, I must thank a11 the foreign collaboratorh, foreign technicians
and toreign advihers who put up this great plant which is truly a national
achievement ... !

Fig. 2 8 ~ 1

Technological self-reliance also implies capability in our institutions to support technology

develop~ncntthrough theil infrastructure and skilled manpower. Self-reliance means, we
should be able to foresee rind forecast our nee&\ .so that development work can be
undertaken at buitable centres.'lt, means, we ihould not be helpless watchers of new
technology emerging from other countries. If it is decided to import new technology, we
shoutd be In a position to develop it further i l l ordr: rc: r. :I!:- i ol:nlr> frt:!~? importing
similar technology again after a few years. Self-reliance implies existence of industry to
produce the goods we need.

So you see that "self-reliance" is a \imple word, hut. in practice, i t means developi,ng our
own capabilities through planning, coordination. education and resear-h.
Science, Technology and We now give another excerpt from the Technology Policy Statement, in which its aims and
objectives are listed.
"The basic objectives of the Technology Policy will be the development of indigenous
technology and efficient absorption and adaptation of imported technology appropriate to
national priorities and resources. Its aims are to :
a) attain technological competence and self-reliance by making the maximum use of
indigenous resources, to reduce vulnerability, particularly in strategic and critical areas;
b) provide the maximum gainful and satisfying employment to all strata of society, with
ernpha~i5on the employment of women and weaker sections of society;
C) use traditional skills and capabilities, making them commercially competitive;
d) ensure maximum development with minimum capital outlay;
e) identify obsolescence of the technology in use and arrange for modernisation of both
equipment and technology;
f) develop technologies which are internationally competitive, particularly those with export
g) improve production speedily through greater efficiency ahd fuller utilisation of existing
capabilities, and enhance the quality and reliability of performance and output;
h) reduce demands on energy, particularly energy from non-fenewable sources;
i) ensure harmony with the environment, preserve the ecological balance and improve the
quality of the habitat; and
j) recycle waste material and make full utilisation of by-products."

Thus, we see that the policy stresses attainment of self-reliance in technological development
and utilisation of our own resources for indigenohs technology.

The aims of the technology policy also show the government's concern for the

Environmental considerations include the folloivigg:

i) Making the air less polluted: This can be done by controlling the combustion
processes. One should ensure the complete burning of coal-or other fuel. Where
combustion takes place, the chimneys must be high enough to ensure that the gases don't
spoil our environment. These chimneys must also be fitted .with pollution reducing

ii) Disposing of solid waste: For example the ash from thermal power plants or the waste
from cement factories should be properly disposed of.

iii) Treating industrial eftluent: Effluents, that are discharged from chemical factories into
rivers or oceans should be appropriately treated to make them free from toxic materials.
A Ganga Pollution Control Authority has been creited by the Gbyenunent of
India forcleaning the river Gangathroughout its stretch by using appropriate treatment

iv) Prevention of soil erosion: Through social forestry farm forestry, grassland and
wasteland development, measures must be taken to control soil erosiori, which' has many
untoward consequences (see Unit 15).

The Department of Environment was set up in 1980. It conducts research, creates public
awareness and runs training programmes related to the environment.
For implementing the Technology Policy Statement, a Technology Policy Implementation
Committee (TPIC) was constituted by the Government. A special plan to provide funds to
institutions of higher education on a se~ehivebasis is now being implemented by the
University Grants Commission. The aim is to enable the institutions to strengthen and
, modemise their infrastructure for undertaking work in front line areas in science and
technology. The Department of Science and Technology (DST) has been the focal
organisation for supporting research of a multi-disciplinary nature. Many of the States have
been persuaded to set up sepgrate councils of science and technology. The DST has been
providing secretarial support to the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Cabinet since
, March, 1981. The researcc programmes supported by the DST are being utilised to improve
actual production processes.
Having read about the Technology Policy of the Government, see if you can solve this
SAQ now.
SAQ 2 Technology and Eeonomic~
Match each of the following sentences with an aim of our technology policy that it
represents. Indicate the aim by putting the :orresponding letter (as on p. 20) in the box
i j Utilise all our human resources.
.ii) Uses should be found for waste material.
iii) Develop to the maximum extent at least cost.
iv) Achieve development without creating ecological imbalance.
V) Replace, by suitable development, outdated technology, machines and processes.


In the section above we have discussed our technology pollcy. We stressed self-rehance and
mentioned that sometimes it becomes necessary to import technology from other nations.
Import of technology is one of the forms of technology transfer, a term that we will discuss
in this section.
There are three ways in which we can transfer techno;
import of technology,
Transfer of techno1og);lfrom the laboratory to the field, and
export of technology from India.
Although India's aim is to be technologically self-reliant, In the init~alstages.^: our
development we may have to depend heavily on imported technology in certain carefully
determined fields. We must generate our own technology, but we must also have the ability
to absorb imported technology and build on it so as to advance more rapidly.
Let us see what the features of the import of technolbgy are

28.3.1 Import of Technology

This form of transfer involves transferring the essential expertise associated with the
capabilities of more developed nations to the lesser developed nations, dho require it for
accelerated industrialisation.This can be done in several ways: through licensing, jolnt
ventures with foreign firms, direct foreign investments, etc. Its efficiency depends on many
factors like the supplier's ability and desire to transfer, the recipient's capacity and desire to
absorb, the recipienr's socio-economic and cultural environment and communications
Clearly, technology impo*could be advantageous. A major gain is that it would help to save
considerable time, money and energy by skipping the stages which other countrtes had to
pass through to achieve the present level of development. But, in practice. the import of
technology has a lot of problems and disadvantages. Here we spell out some of these.
The buying of technology may be very expensive. Take, for example, the buying of the
latest defence aircmft from France. Though we have saved money bn going through the
various stages of research and development, we still have to pay large sums of money to
buy these aircraft outright. This is because the price includes the developmental
expenditure that France incurred in this connection! So, we end up paying for research
.nd d.cvelopment, and that too, in foreign exchange. Further, the R & D structure within
the country also remains undeveloped.
Table 28.1 may give you some idea of how expensive foreign technology is. It shows that
royalties and the cost of technical know-how a& increasing year by year. These have to
be paid in foreign exchange also.
Table 28.1: Remittances by Indian enterprises to organisations abroad
Year Royalty Technical know-how
Ols. miUml (Rs. million)
Science, Technology and Imported technology often comes with restrictions or "political strings" attached to it by
the supplier. For example, India used to import enriched uranium from the United States
to use in its fission reactors. A time came when the US Government insisted that we sign
the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty, otherwise they would stop the supply. India refused
to do so and argued that this was not a condition in the original agreement. However,
India's argument was of no use, and the US stopped the supply.
The supplier often unloads obsolete technology on the recipient, sometimes at a very high
cost. Since the receiving country does not have the technology, it may not even know
how outdated the offered technology may be. An example is the automobile industry in
which we continue to be saddled with models that are no more in demand in the
developed countries or in the parent country. Also, since the end of World War 11,'one of
the major areas of industrial development has been that of domestic conveniences, such as
air conditioners, refrigerators and electronic goods like the TV, VCR, etc. Once the
domestic market in Europe & USA was saturated, markets were created in the developing
countries for the finished products, and later, for the sale of related technologies. Since, in
these areas, the technologies are quick change ones, what is transferred to the developing
countries is outdated.
The receiving country may permanently have to depend on the donor country, especially
in crucial areas like defence equipment. The donor may sell a moderndefence aircraft,
but with the condition that the receiver always buys the spares and ancilhries from them.
This way the receiving nation will not be allowed to be self-sufficient.
When a country imports technology from more than one country for an industry, then the
spare parts may not fit into various models. As you know, the technology for Maruti, Fiat
and Ambassador cars was imported from three different countries, namely, Japan. Italv
and Britain; and the spare parts of one don't fit into the others. So the scale of production
of spare parts will vary, thus increasing the cost of production.
A multi-national corporation of a developed nation may give technological know-how to a
developing nation with the restriction that the knowledge is not to be shared with other '
developing nations. This ensures their direct hold over different countries.
We now give a table that shows the quantum of technology imported, in some key industries.
Tabie 28.2: Number of foreign collaboration approvals in some industries

Year 1982 - 1983 1984 1985


Electrical .Equipment 107 129 157 205

Industrial Machinery 107 115 138 152
Chemicals (non-fertilisers) 53 62 69 69
Transportation ZX 39 63 101
Telecommunications 7 7 3 13

This table shows how the cost in foreign exchange keeps mounting.
On the basis of the arguments presented in this section you can J o thi5 SAQ.
Fill in the blanks from the words given after the paragraph
When importingtechnology; the receiving eoatrtq-mu'srefisure&t it is the.. .............
technology; that it will be possible for them to manufacture all the items ..................within a
reasonably.shortperiod of time; that the donor country doesn't attach .....................strings or
exert any pressure on them. Th~z,will ultilnately lead to the ................nation being ................
___ ,

- -
political, latest, self-reliant, indigenously, receiving.

Now, we will discuss the second form of technology transfer.

28.3.2 Lab to Field

It has been the policy of the Government of India, from the time of Independence, to achieve
self-reliance by developing ~nd~genous technology In a5 many areas of Industry as possible. ,
We, therefore, had created a chain ot lab~ratonesin all areas. The National Research and
Development Corporation of Ind~a(\KD(')wa5 set up In 1953 for facllltatlng the transfer of
1 technology from the laboratories of national R & D institutes to the field. These institutes Technology and Economic
I offer their processes for commercial exploitation to NRDC.

1 If indigenous efforts are not considered adeguate at thepolicy-making lcvcl of the Mercnt
ministries, a new policy is formulated for updating technology and for the import of
I technology from the developed countries. The Department of Science and Technology,
I Planning Commission, Science and Engineering Research Council and various Scientific
Advisory Committees attached to the ministries monitor the technological needs of India.
SAQ4 '
Tho Indian Councii of Agricultural Research has initiated the Krishi Vigyan Kendra
(K.V K.) project. One component of this project is to train rural women in food technology,
post-harvest technology, use of non-conventional sources of energy, etc.
Is this a form of technology transfer? Give reasons for your answer, In about 50 words.

We end this section with a short paragraph on technology exports from India.

28.3.3 Export of Technology

India has gained experience and expertise in various fields of technology. Thus, we are in a
position to assist a lot of developing nations in the process of technological advancement.
India exports technology to a large number of Asian, Middle-Eastem, African & Latin
American nations. This is in the form of technological know-how or machinery. We give
you some examples in the following table.
Table 2 8 3 Technology exports from India

. Receiving Area of technology Technolonv

Country transfer
-- -
Burma Switchgears & electrical supply &
distribution material, instatlation
steel work for buildings
Kuwait Light fibre appliances & cables Installation & maintenanie
Malaysia Computer equipment & Supply, delivery,
software installat~onand maintenance of
hardware & software
Ethiopia Microwave network Erection, construction &
Kenya . Cement, machine tools Technical assistance.
& PVC resins industry consultancy & train~ng
Brazil Small & medium Know-how &
industries consultancy
Mexico Disks & magnetic Know-how &
tapes for computers consultancy
Argentina Hydro-electricity Know-how &
generation technology consultancy

So far'we have discussed the ways in which research and development can be used to make
technological progress. In the next section we will give examples of some ~ndustriesin
which recent developments in technology have taken place. But let's do an SAQ first.
Fill in the bianks in the fdowing paragraph

In 1955 ~ndiawas.. .. .: ...... a lot of technology. By 1975 our sclcrlusts were ablc
to.. .............various technologies to suit our own conditiotls Thcsc . . . . ..develop&
technologies were.. the field, the o h of transfer being.. . . . . . . . . . Now wc
are in a siti ion to.. .............know-how re ated to electroilics to countncs llkc...........
and ..............
Srience, Technology and
In recent years R & D efforts in the fields of pure and applied chemistry, mathematics and
physics have helped a great deal in our progress from agro-based industries to the areas of
heavy industries, chemicals, steels, textiles, sugar, pharmaceuticals, computers and
electronics. T o give a few examples, the developments in the field of metallurgy have
depended on the applications of the principles of chemistry, physics and engineering. A large
number of manufacturing operations in the chemicals, steel, textile, sugar and
pharmaceutical industnes depend on chemical conversions. The development of computers
and electronics have been based on fundamental physics and mathematics with the help of
electrical, mechanical and production engineering. Research in materials science has led to
experiments with fibre glass. This can be used in making lighter aircraft and lighter luggage,
among other things.
One has to remember that the whole process of technology involves the processing of raw
materials into useful and profitable products. These products are used both as consumer
goods and as an ~ntermediatefor further chem~caland physical modifications to yield
consumer products. For example, in the chemical industry, about one-quarter of the total
chemical output IS utilised in the manufacture of other chemicals.
' The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has a chain of laboratories in
almost all areas rclating to the national dcvclopment cffort: fuels. cerarmcs and glass,
chemicals, metallurgical and electro-chemical products, etc. Silk & Art Silk Manufacturing
Research Association (SASMIRA) in Bombay and Indian Jute Industries Research
Association (IJIRA) in Calcutta. which are maintained jointly by the collaborative efforts of
the Government and the industries concerned, are active in their fields. Regional research
laboratories maintained by the CSIR at different places like Trivandrum, Jammu,
Hyderabad; ~ h u i a n e s h w a rand Jorhat, look after the regional research and development
Before dealing with current technological changes in some industries, let us look at tne thrust
of our developments in the area of energy.

28.4.1 Energy Sector

The energy related developments have been in the direction of energy saving and search for
new energy sources for present and future needs.
It has been estimated that in 1850 coal, oil and gas were responsible for 5% of the world's
energy, while human and animal labour did about 95% of the work. Today, coal, oil, gas and
nuclear sources account for approximately 94%. water power about 1% and human and
animal labour the remaining 5% of the world's energy. While this is the overall picture of
the world, in our country the picture is quite different. Human and animal energy and
burning of wood and dung cakes accounts for a much higher proportion of energy in India.
Our nuclear power generation is just gaining momentum.

From Unit 17, you know that among the energy sources available in India are fossil fuels
(like lignite, coal and petroleum) the sun, wind, geothermal energy (for example, hot springs)
water (hydro-electric power) and human and animal labour. The cost of energy varies. It is the
lowest in the case of direct combustion of biomass and peat, which is wet, partially decomposed
organic matter. The cost of energy is also quite low in the case of fossil fuels. Large deposits of
lignite have been found in Tamil Nadu. But it costs more than coal, as it has tobe processed into
briquets before it can be used. Gaseous fuels and manufactured gas, such as fuel gases like coke-
oven gas. water gas, producer gas, etc., cost much more. There have been attempts to
prepare ethyl alcohol by biomass conversion and methane by fermentation. Vegetable oil,
in recent years, is also being used as a replacement for diesel.
Among the other energy sources, nuclear energy is considered to be one of the proven
alternat~veenergy sources, and, in some countries, such as France, 70% of their energy is
now derived from nuclear sources. In the Bhabha Atomlc Research Centre, apart from
uranium, thorium, obta~nedfrom monazite sands from the beaches in Kerala, has been
successfully used to produce nuclear power. The first such reactor has been commissioned in
Kalpakkam near Madras There arc o w r 550 nuclear power plants all over the world
. Indla. at the moment. has OIIIV five A few morc power plants are soon to be put lnto servlce.
Other energy sources which have received considerable attention a& geothermal energy, Technology and Economic
Develepment . ,
wave and tidal energy, solar energy, ocean thermal energy and electro-chemical cells which -.
generate electricity. Conversion of biomass into biogas needs particular mention. In India, at
present, fossil fuels. hydro-electric power, biomass conversion. and nuclear power are the
ones which are being used. Others still remain more or less in the experimental stage as far
as practical utilisation is concerned.

28.4.2 Some Key Industries

We will now talk about recent developments in some of the key 'industries, namely, the
textile, sugar, pharmaceutical, steel. chemical and electronic industries.
The Textile Industry: A current development in the textile industry has been the
remarkable development of synthetic fibres. Naturally occumng cotton, wool and silk are
being replaced by man-made fibres. At present, synthetic fibres represent about 50% of the
world's fibre product~on.In 198 1 , 14 m~lliontons of man-made fibres were produced in the
world. while natural fibres prepared amounted to 17 million tons. Earlier developed fibres
l ~ k erayon were based on celluiose. Nylon was the first wholly man-made synthetic fibre. It
chem~callybelongs to the group called polyamides. The next fibre to be developed was
polyester:commonly known a5 terylene.
Today, the range of synthetic fibres has been enlarged and also includes glass fibre. Mult~-
component limes, which are superior to fibres spun from only one of-the components, are also
b a n g manufactured. These fibres are prepared by s ~ i n n i n gtwo or more polvrners together
The manufacture of any synthetic fibre begins with the preparation of a ?olytner consisting of a
very long i-ha~nof molecules. By controlling the average chain length of the molecules, a
single'polymer can be used to make a number of fibres with widely differing mechanical
properties. They can be made weak and stretchable or strong and stiff.
Along with the above mentioned synthetic fibres, mention should be made of the fibres
which nave been developed from cellulosic raw materials like cotton. Examples of fibres
made of these materials are raw nylon or viscose. Viscose is made from wood pulp by
. chemical processes. Polymeric films like cellophane are also manufactured from cellulose
by a special process. A recent development has been the manufacture of carbon fibres which
h a y be prepared from rayon or polyacrylon. These carbon fibres can withstand high
temperatures and are used for manufacturing heat shields for nose cones of rockets,
particularly those that return to earth from space voyages. I t has also been possible to
prepare such fibre from coal-tar or petrokum pitch. Carbon fibres are used for reinforcing
engineering plastics and plastics which are used for sports goods.
Cotton or woolen textile industries are major traditional industries in India. Recently, some
d e v e ~ o ~ m k nhave
t s taken place improving their spinning. dyeing. bleaching and printing
methods. and also in the methods for giving special finish, such as for crease recovery,
dimensional stability. resistance to nlicrobial attack and ultraviolet light, flame resistance,
btc. Treatments are also aimed at changing their properties to improve their usefulness. For
:example. it is possible. through appropriate treatments. to achieve flame proofing by.
application.of certain chemicals. Mildew proofing or rot proofing can be done by the use of
many organic and inorganic compounds. There are special chemicals which can be used to
produce a water repelling property. Shrink proofing of wool can be done by applying
various chlorinatirrg~processesor by coating the fibres with a melamine formaldehyde resin.
In recent years chemical finishes have been used to react with fibre material such as c'otton . -J

f@rchanging its properties.

Sugar Industry: The sugar and starch industries in India are considerably important. Sugar
1s nece~sary~forthe energy i t gives. Of course it is liked for its sweet taste'also! Sugarcane is
the main sourcq of sugar in India. The states which are important for our sugar industry are
Mahamshtra.'llttar Pradesh. Mamataka. Bihar. Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
, The method used in India for manufacturing sugar from sugarcane has not changed over the
years. But the use ot'bagasse, the residue left after cane juice extraction, has changed. It used
tp be utili5ed as a raw material in manufacturing paper. A recent development is its use for
tkrmentation to produce alcohol. Raw sugar is decolorised with bone charcoal or activated
carbon. A decolor~singchemical additive has now been developed. For removal'of inorganic
431ts. a recent developnient is the use of ion exchange resins.
The other raw mdter~alfor obtain~ngsugar. whlch is now in the process of development in
India. is sugar-beet. The sugar-beet differs from ordinary table beetroot. It is much larger and
J 1
Science, ~echnologyand
is not red. The sugar-beet industry is being sought to be developed in such areas like
Sundarbans of West ~ e n ~and a l a few other places. But sugar-cane is likely to remain the
major source of sugar in India.
The Pharmaceutical Industries: This is a major industry in Indla. India is meeting 70% of
its requirement of bulk drugs, and almost all its requirement of formulations. The products are
usually classified according to chemical structures, or by chemical reactions needed to
manufacture them, or by their use. There are about 50 commonly prescribed drugs.

Some of these drugs are prepared by isolat~onfrom natural raw materials. For example,
Serpasil, a drug given to patients suffering from high blood pressure, is obtained from a plant
called Rauwolfia Serpentina. A drug against blood cancer, Vincrystine, is obtained from a
common plant, Vinca-Rosea. Digitalis, a drug for heart patients, is got from the fox-glove

But many drugs are prepared by synthesis. For example, Aspirin, the common analgesic. is
obtained from salicylic acid. Antibiotics Iike'Penicillin or Streptomycin were originally
prepared by fermentation. or through a process of biosynthesis. Now they can be prepared
synthetically. Again, the chemical compound, Isoniazide, is one ol'the most potent and
selective medicine5 against tuberculosis. One of the important developments has been in the
manufacture of Insulin, an anti-diabetic drug. Earlier this was being produced from the
pancreatic glands of animals. Now, it is prepared by gene splicing, of which you-will read
more in Sec. 29.6.1.

Two public sector undertakings, Hindustant Antibiotics Limited and Indian Drugs and
Pharmaceuticals Limited, manufacture many of the 50 commonly used drugs mentioned
earlier by processes of synthesis and/or isolation from plants or animals.

Steel Industry: In India this industry has developed significantly since Independence, and is
now under acentral authority, namely, Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL). Somesteel
plants come under the public sector, such as those at Durgapur, Bumpur, Bokaro, Rourkela?
Bhi1ai;etc. Some are in the private sector such as the Tata Iron and Steel Company at
Jamshedpur. The most significant development has been the use of a multi-pronged
approach in getting technology from a number of developed countries. The earliest Tata
plant was put up with American technology. Now we are using Soviet technofogy at Bokdro
and Bhilai, and German technology at Rourkela. The Tatas are trying to develop indigenotls .
Chemical Industry: Under this heading we include the manufacture of caustic soda, ,
chlorine, cement, carbon, coal, urea. nitric acid, super phosphates and gases like hydrogen,
oxygen and nitrogen. We have a sizeable glass and ceramic industry, surface coating
industry, food and food by-product industry. Our agrochemical industries have developed
indigenous technology for the manufacture of pesticides and insecticides. Our soap and
detergent industry manufactures soap, detergents and glycerine. Our oils and fats industries
manufacture vegetables and animal oils and fats. A major breakthrough has been achieved in
the field of petrochemicals. We have a number of petroleum processing plants and
petrochemical industries, the biggest being in Baroda. India produces two-thirds of her
petroleum requirements. The rest is imported from countries of the Middle East, the Soviet
Union, some East European countries and some South American countries. We have a
number of petroleum refineries situated in, Bombay, Visakhapatnarn, Assam, Bihar, West
Bengal and Kerala. Some more are expected to come up during the present plant period. ,
. Electronic Industry: In recent years the whole world has seen a revolution in electronics. It
is a very important part of practically every industry, as well as many spheres of human
activity like communications, transport, education and entertainment. The computer industry
has been radically altered in recent years due to a shift from the analogue to the digital
technology. This has led to a very big change in communicatit-ms technology. A combination
of analogue and digital technology has made distant or remote control of machines possiMe.

Computerisation has also helped in various fields of engineering. In the old days, in
mechanical, civil or chemical engineering, it would take a long time from the first stage of
designing to the last stage of creating the actual product. Since the advent of computers,
through computer-aided designing methods, much of the labour and cost involved is saved.
Also, with the help of the computer, the sensitivity, accuracy and dependability of a Technology and Economic
particular design can be tested quite easily.

In computer and electronics based industries, the percentage of employees involved in

research and development may be anywhere between 33% and do%, because, in these areas,
the competition is high and development of new materials and new technology is very
important for maintaining a lead over other competitors. There may be a new model of a
ccmputer design every 2 or 3 years.
In&ars annual electronics production level is more than Rs. 1,00,000 million (in 1994).
India has started producing:
electronic switching systems:
VLSl (Very Large Scale Integration) circuits, which form the basis for modern electronic
polysilicon to meet the requirements of integrated circuits, and to harness solar energy;
highpower microwave tubes, which form the basis for radar systems;
One of the most important programmes in education that has been igtroduced is
C L A S , computer Titewcy and studies in schools. In this programme school children are
being taught to use and appreciate computers, which have been'installed in about
4000 schools i n In&a.

The general outlook ofthe electropics industry seems to be bright. There have been
substantial growth rates recorded in computers, office equipment and software exports. In
the coming years the communication sector is expected to grow rapidly.
To conclude, it can be said that industries in India are progressing, but we have far to go.
Often, we need to import current technology. According to one estimate, 35% of druis and
pharmaceuticals, 70% of agricultural machinery, 7 5 6 of electronics, and almost all
petrochemicals and fertilisers are products of forkign technology. This position has to be
changed by conscious policy and careful planning combined with increasing support for
educatio", research and development.

$.A() 6
Fill in the blanks:
II A recent development in the .....................industry is the manufacture of .....................
fibres for reinforcing plastics. They can be prepared from ......................
ii, ......................a drug 10 combat diabetes, is now prepared synthetically.
iii) In the steel industry we are still from a lot of .....................
i\l) In the chemical industry, the major recent development has been in the production
of.. ....................


lndia has made rapid advances in technology since Independence. A lot of technological
innovations are available here. But, for a number of reasons, the weaker sections of our
society have not been able to benefit from these technologies. Two important reasons are
lack of awareness of them and lack of access to them.
Let us figst discuss the lack of awareness. A major reason is the lack of even primary
education. In our country about 48% of the poplilation, that is about 48 crore people, are
illiterate. Schools are not available to everyone within a convenient distance. On top of it.
the massive poveity m a large section of the Indian society does not allow them enough
time to go to school, even if the school is nearby. All the members of a poor family have to
work and struggle for the basic necessities of life.
Again, because of a lack of communication, the illiterate people feel that technological
progress is beyond their comprehension and not of any use to them. There have been
artempts through the media, like radio and T.V.. to reach our population who live in villages
and tell them aboM the benefits of;modern technological innovations that are available in
India. But these ate not enough.
Science, Technology and Often, when people know about the technological advancements that are available, they are
Development '.
reluctant to utilise them. This is due to prejudice because of religious beliefs, superstitions
and old customs. For exkample,although vaccinations have been available to us for nearly
100 years, there are people in our society, even in the cities, who are opposed to vaccinating
their children against DPT (Diphtheria,pertussis, typhoid). Similarly, it is known that water
can be polluted and cause disease. Though boiling the water can easily prevent many water
borne diseases, most people in the villages, where pure drinking water is not available, don't
bother to do it. This is because of old customs as well as lack of fuel.
Thus, we have in the country today, the urban society which has had an exposure to ~ 0 d e m
ideas through education. They have accepted technological innovations as a means for
progress. But the majority of Indians remain indifferent. Elementary scientific knowledge or
exposure to science is not available to them. The only way to right this wrong is to spread
elementary education and science education. This can be done through radio and T.V. But,
these we not available to all the rural masses. It may be necessary to approach them through
their own social hierarchy and village level organisations like Panchayats. This aspect of
society's transformation has to be kept in view in our mass education programme if the inter-
relationship of science, industry and technology is to be brought home to them. Through
rural development programmes and rural science programmes, it can'be shown, how simple
labour saving devices can reduce their daily load of work, or how, for example, solar energy
or wind energy can make lighting or imgation possible. The efforts should be concentrated,
therefore, in spreading awareness to this deprived section of our population so that they
understand the benefits of technology, which can bring a change in their lives.
But is awareness enough? You may be aware of a better technology for imgation, but if you
do not have enough funds to obtain it, the awareness will not help you. In India, there are
millions of people who can? benefit from advanced technology only because it is beyond
their budget. This is where the government can help. It can subsidise the technologies that
will aid the weaker sections of our society. It can also market them to ensure that these
technologies are available wherever rhey are needed. Such a strategy would certainly make
the advantages of technological progress available to more and -morepeople.
Which of the fc!lowing statements are true? Put T for a true statement in the box provided,
and F otherwise.
i) Villagers have far less access to information about technology than the people
living in cities.
ii) Rural women have generally remained untouched by, and unaware of, the
benefits of technology.
iii) By producing more radios and televisions we can.raise the level of awareness
of science in India.
iv) If the purchasing power of every Indian is increased, the benefits of
technological developments will filter down to all strata of our society.

We end this unit by summarising what is covered in it.
Why is necessary for India to develop its own technology. I
The Technology Policy Statement.
Technology transfer encompasses import of technology from developed nations,
exporting technology to lesser developed nations and transferring indigenously i

developed technology from the laboratories to industry or agriculture. The import of

technology has a lot of drawbacks and should be minimised.
Current developments in the following Indian industries: textile, sugar, pharmaceuticals,
steel, chemical, electronics.
Why all strata of Indian society have not utilised India's technological advancement
Technology and Fxonornic
-28.7 TERMINAL QUESTIONS Development

If you have been through the unit you will be able to answer the following exercises.
1) Give three reasons for the need for a nation to develop its own technology.

-2) While choosing appropriate technology, that is, technology suited to our needs, we must
keep certain factors in mind. can you list three of these factors?

3) How does import of technology relate to self-reliance, in the Indian context? Answer in
about 100 words.

4) List two recent developments in the technology related to

a) the textile industry,
b) the electronic industry,
c) the pharmaceutical industry.
5 ) Why is SAQ 7 (ii) true? Answer in about 75 words.

- - -

Self Assesment Questions
1) i) T; ii) T; iii) T; iv) F
2) i) b; ii) j; iii) d; iv) i; v) e.
3) latest, indigenously, political, receiving, self-reliant.
4) Yes. This is a case of transferring indigenously developed technology to the field.
Technology does not consist only of machines or processes. It also consists of the know-
how needed to use these processes. The training programmes spread this know-how.
5) importing, develop, indigenously, transferred, lab-to-field, export, Burma/Malaysia/
6) i) textile, carbon, rayodcoal-tar/pitch/polyacrylon
ii) Insulin
iii) importing, developed
iv) petrochemicals.
7) i) T; ii) T; iii) F; iv) T
Terminal Questions
1) A nation should develop its own technology because
if it should be self-reliant,
ii) the basic needs of its citizens must be met,
iii) this will lead to an increase in its national productivity,
You can add many more reasons
2) There are many factors. Three of them are:
, a) The technology must utilise our human resources optimally.
b) It should utilise locally available natural resources
c) It should be geared towards energy conservation.
3) Since India was a colony, it did not have adequate opportunities to develop
technologically. Therefore, it has had to import technology from the technologically
advanced nations. But, import of technology has several drawbacks. Therefore, we shourd
not keep on importing technology. We must develop our own infrastructure so that, after
a certain stage, we can be in a position to develop our own technology. We should also be
in a position to improve the borrowed technology and adapt it to Indian conditions. This
is the way to self-reliance.
Thus, imp~rtoftechnology, to a limted extent, will help us to develop. But, if we always
rely on imported technology, and don't develop our indigenous technology, 'we will never
be self-reliant.
4) There could be several answers. The answer we give is
a) Flame proofing, shrink proofing of wool;
b) Introduction of telematics, production of high power microwave tubes;
c) Synthetic manufacture of Insulin, synthetic manufacture of antibiotics.
5) Rural women have far less access to information about technology than rural men
because, firstly, they are deprived of even basic education. Secondly, since their activities
are often limited to their homes, they are isolated from the world outside. Taking care of
their families and working in the fields takes up all their time. Therefore, they cannot
come into contact with various technological developments unless a special effort is
made by technocrats to reach them.
29.1 Introduction .
29.2 Laser : Putting Light to Work
Applications of Laser
29.3 Fibre Optics
Applications of Optical Fibres
29.4 Space Technology
Dividends from Space
29.5 Fission and Fusion Energy
Nuclear Fission: Splitting the Atom
Nuclear Reactor
Nuclear Fusion: The Ultimate Source of Energy
The Other Side of the Coin
29.6 What is Biotechnology
Genetic Engineering
Enzyme Immobilisatio~
29;7 Summary
29.8 Terminal Questions
29.9 Answers

Products of modern science and technology have become a part and parcel of our daily Ilfe.
Whether we are situated in farflung villages or in the hustle and bustle of cities, we come
across these products everyday - in food and agricukure, in transport andkommunications
or in various other articles we use. You have already read about some of these technologies
in Unit 28. There are several modem technologies which we may not come across d~rectly,
but we do read about them in the newspapers or magazines. One day we are told about
exciting developments in semiconductors, computers, robotics or artificial intelligence,
another day about lasers, optical fibres or materials science and technology. Millions of us
have watched Squadron Leader Rakesh Sharma and astronauts from other nations make
successful trips in space -- a feat made possible'only due to the advances in space technology.
Biotechnology is a hot topic of debate and discussion these days. So is fission technolo&.
Fusion may replace fission as a source of nuclear energy by the beginning of the next century,
if the rapid pace of development continues.
You have studied, in Unit 27, that we shall be using in the next ten or fifteen years (or even
earlier) technologies that are now in the making. Hence, one of the last parts of this course '
tries to acquaint you with the emerging technologies. We would also like you to know and
think about the likely social impact of these technologies, about the benefits their proper use
might confer on us and the problems and difficulties their misuse might create for us. So
that, if the need arises, you could consciously react to and influence issues relating to these
technologies. What is being said about each technology is very brief. If some of you
develop an interest in any of these technologies and wish to study them further, a list of
hooks has also been provided at the end of the unit. In this unit we discuss lasers, fibre
O F $ ~ Sspace
, technology, fission and fusion, and biotechnology. In Unit 30, we will take
ug semiconductors, computer technology, robotics, artificial intelligence. and materials
science and technology.
Srience, Technology and Objectives
After studying this unit you should be able to : ,
r --list properties that make light from a laser different from sunlight or light from ordinary
sources, such as fluorescent tubes, bulbs etc.,
state what an optical fibre is,
explain the-functions of rockets, artificial satellites and space probes,
describe nuclear fission, nuclear fusion and a nuclear reactor,
state what biotechnology is, and explain genetic engineering and enzyme immobilisation,
describe the applications of the technologies discussed in this unit.


LASER stands for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation. It's a fairly
long string of words. Well, don't let it stop you from reading further. What we wish to bring
out here is that lasers produce a very special kind of light. The light that lasers produce has
several useful properties that make it different from ordinary light. It is becarise of these
properties that laser light can be put to work in a number of ways.
Refer to Fig. 10.1 and Sec. 10.2 You may wonder what the difference between ordinary light and light from a laser is. Light
in Unit 10 to know what is meant
from the Sun or from a lamp in your home is a mixture of many wavelengths. Each
by wavelengfh.
wavelength produces a different colour. These colours mix and form ordinary light. We have
all seen colours in the sunlight separating out to form a rainbow in the sky after a rainy day.
Moreover. light waves from an ordinary source of light are all jumbled up and uncoordinated
in their movement (Fig.



Fig. 29.1: (a) Light from an ordinary source is made up of many wavelenihs and the waves move in different
directions; (b) laser light is of a single wavelength and all the waves are in phase with one another. i.e.
the crests (hills) and troughs (valleys) af one wav- fall on top of the crests and troughs of other waves.

Laser light is made up of u~al*es of the same wavelength. Whai is more, all the nvavekin a
laser beam are organised to proc~edexactiy in step (in phase) with each other
(Fig. 29.1 b). This property of lasers is called coherence. It reminds you of contingents of
smartly dressed meanmoving in unison in the Republic Day parade. Or of the uniform
movement of oars in boat races of Kerala held on Onam. Does it not? As a result of
coherence, light waves in a laser beam can travel laige distames without spreading
apart. Because a laser beam does nor smead ou!. there is a large concentruriori of energy
h laser beam falls. "
per iinir area on the object on ~ ' h l c the

29.2.1 Applications of Laser

Due to its properties, laser light can be put to a number of uses in industry, medicine,
communications etc. We will briefly describe some of these uses. Because of the high
concentratior, of energy, a laser beam can quickly bum tiny holes, a few millimetres wide,
even in a strip of steel. Lasers have an advantage over all other traditional methods of cutting
and welding. Using lasers you can cut anv kind of material. such as paper, plywood, plastic
or cloth, as also the hardest of metals, ceranlics and glass with greater efficiency and
accuracy. Lasers can, thus, make an ideal tool for metal workers, carpenters and tailors, apart
from engineers.
Military Applications Modern Developments in
Science and Technology-I
Another area where the above mentioned properties of lasers are being used with a 'deadly'
precision is that of military applications. Lasers have been pressed into the service of the
global war machine. A whole range of laser weaponry has come into being, for use on land,
on sea and in space. X-ray lasers that can cany enormous energy have been developed.
Efforts are on to install.deadly laser weapons in satellites. The same technology could be
used to destroy factories, forests, farms and habitation. It is certainly a matter of concern,to
see so much human effort and wealth being used to turn the laser technology into an
instrument for mankind's destruction. Every effort should be made to stop this misuse of

Healing Touch of Lasers

Contrast the above application of lasers with their uses in medicine where the laser is
working wonders.
A laser can be applied with almost perfect precision in surgery. It can bum away diseased
tissue without damaging the healthy tis'sue nearby. The tissues are cut neatly and without --
any oozing of blood, and they can also be joined together. Lasers are completely sterile,
because bacteria cannot survive exposure to a laser beam. Today, lasers are routinely used

in eye surgery to treat detached retinas and to destroy abnormal blood vessels that form in
the retinas of diabetic patients. Earlier these diseases would result in blindness. For such
patients, laser is indeed a "miracle light". Lasers have become standard equipment
- . for ear,
eye and other delicate forms of surgery. From removing brain tumours, to stoppiag
bleeding from ulcers, and treating cancer of the bladder, lasers find a wide use in medicine
(Fig. 29.2).

Lasers have also become an important means of long distancecommunication. Travelling
through fibres, laser light can be made to carry thousands of times more (3)
information than electric signals in conventional copper wire. Thousands of telephone calls
can be transmitted on a single fibre.
Fig. 29.2: A laser beam ( I ) guided
Other Uses by an opt~calfibre (2)burns he
Lasers may be used to measure the distance of objects like the moon from the earth. Here, block in the leg artery (3).
itime taken for a laser beam to reach the moon and be reflected back to the earth is measured.
As you know, light travels at the speed of 3 x lo5 km per second. Thus, the distance can be
found from the simple formula :distance = speed x time. Laser beams are also used to
1 read and play the music or
Among other things, scientists use lasers to monitor small traces of chemicals polluting the- images recorded on CDS
atmosphere because these molecules disturb the passage of the beam and thereby reveal (compact disks), and read the
information stored on CDROMs
themselves. Efforts are being made to transmit power by means of laser beams. Laser beams m computers.
are used to etch music and video pictures on records which look like ordinary gramophone
records. Such records can be played back by a laser beam and, thus, they never wear out. If
you happen to visit a science museum you will see holograms of various objects. These are
life-like three dimensional images created by laser beams.
Thus, you see that lasers can be put to endless uses for the knefit of h~imanbeings. These
uses seem to be limited only by the imagination of the scientistgsnd engineers. And the best
is yet to come.

a) Using the words given below, fill in the blank spaces in the following sta(ements about
laseis and their properties.
i) Lasers are sources of a special kind of ......................which has several useful
ii) A-laser beam can carry energy or ...................... over ................. I.... distances.
iii) Lasers can direct a large ......................of energy per unit ...................... on the object
on which it falls because it does not ...................... out.

light, spread, amount, signals, long, area

Science, Technology and
b) Here are a few applications of lasers. Which of the properties of lasers mentioned in part
(a) of this SAQ are being utilised for these applications? Write the appropriate numbers
against each application.
i) Finding the distance between the earth and the moon. ......................
ii) Drilling holes in baby bottle nipples. ......................
iii) Shooting down missiles. ......................
iv) Transmitting phone calls. ......................
The application of lasers in communications has been made possible largely due to the
advances in fibre optics. Let us know about fibre optics and its applications.


Radiowaves are electre The songs you hear on your transistor, or the pictures you see on your TV are canied from
magnetic waves of long the studios to your home on radiowaves. Telephone calls you make, on the other hand, are
wavelength. See Sec. 10.2 in Unit
10 to refresh your memory. bansmitted by electric current flowing in copper wires. In-the recent past,-new technologies
have sppeared for transmitting various kinds of electric signals on glass fibres. This has been
possible due to the advances in fibre optics technology.
Fibre optics is the technique of transmitting light waves through glass wires as thin as
human hair.
These wires called optical fibres could be made of glass or transparent plastic, quartz, nylon
or polystyrene. Opticalfibres are thin hair-like solid strands that carry light along their
length, by a process of multiple total internal reflections (Fig. 29.3). We will not go into the
details of the process. In this process the beam of light entering at one end is transmitted
along the fibre, without loss of intensity, whether the fibre is straight or bent in a curve.

Fig. 293: Transmission of light through an optical fibre.

29.3.1 Applications of Optical Fibres

Fibre optics finds many applications in areas like medicine and communications which we
will briefly describe. We will also discuss its advhtage over tradifional technologies.
Viewing inaccessible regions
Instruments made of optical fibres, called endoscopes, are used to see the
internal organs of the human body, such as the interior of the stomach, or the bronchial
tubes. Inserted into the body, some fibres of the bundle carry light so that the internal organ
is lit up. Other fibres are used to return light so that the image of the interior is canied to the
observer outside. Endoscopes are often connected to a camera or TV monitor. Since these
fibres are very fine, they can be irrAertedeasily in the body. The images are very useful in
heart and brain surgery and ia diagnosis of some other diseases.
Freeing crowded cableways
The use of aptical fibres has been very adkantageous in telecommunications. Signals of
voice, text, computer data or picture transmissions are superimposed on laser beams. The ,
modulated laser beams are then guided along optical fibres, to various points where they are
received. At the receiving end, one is able to hear the voice, read the data or see the picture
(Fig. 29.4).
The signal carrying capacity of light waves is much greater than that of radio waves or
waves along copper wires. Therefore, the light waves travelling in fibres can carry thousands
of different signals. For instance, a pair of glass fibres can carry 1300 telephone calls at the
same time, as against 24 for copper wires.
Modern Developmentsin
Science and Technology-I
transmitted signal +

laser source
ieceived signal
optical fibre
modulated light beam

Fig. 29.1: The fibre optic link between lelephonr exchange<. A laher ha111 u i ~ hthe \rfnnl tmprchsed on il. IS
directed at one end of the fibre. 11 emerge?,at the other rtid. A phototliode convcrl\ Ihi. l i ~ h he:~m
t into
electrlc currcnt. The tlemodularor rccclvcr\ thr. or~pllr,~l
The use of laser beams in optical fibres enables the transmission of signals for thousands of
kilometres. Transatlantic undersea fibre-optic cables have been in use for ~ommunication
between USA and UK. Instead of being broadczst from antennas, TV programrnek can now
be transmitted through fibre-optic cables. The cable TV can, thus, make available several
channels to the viewer. Freliminary experiments on the use of fibre-optic technology in India
are being done so that we can also take adtantage of this technology in the coming years.
Indian research laboratories have already developed the technology of producing the special
I glass, drawing fibres from it and giving it a special coating so that internal reflection takes
place with a minimum toss. Indian industry is now manufacturing optical fibres.
The fibre optics technology has many advantages over the traditional technology. An optical
fibre cable, the size of an ordinary electrical cord, can replace copper cable hundreds of
times thicker. Optical fibres are light and sturdy. ?'hey are much less expensive than copper II is possible to interfere with
w e s for the amouvt of information they carry. Because optical fibres carry light beams, and disturb messages being sent
they are free from the disturbances. wch as you hear on the radio due to nearby electric on radio waves, by transmitting
other radio waves of the same
I disturbances. Fibre-optic communication is also advanrapeous for military communication frequency at the same time. This
because it cannot be "jammed" process is called 'jamming'.

There may come a day when optical fibre cables enter many of our h o u s ~ carrying
s not only
telephone calls but also television programmes, communication from computers and
electronic mail sent from person to person.
a) Select from i) to vii) below the three true statements about optical fibres and write your
answer in the space given below.
An optical fibre is:
i ) a hollow hair-like thin transparent wire that carries light.
ii) a solid hair-like thin transparent wire that carries radio waves.
iii) a solid hair-like thin transparent wire that carries light.
i v ) made up of a transparent material like glass, quartz or polystyrene.
v) used to carry information to nearby places.
vi) used to carry large amounts of information.
vii)rnore expensive than a copper cable ..................................................
r b) The following is a summary of what you have just learnt about fibre optics. Fill in the
blank spaces using the words given below:
Fibre optics is a technique that provides a way of transmitting information. It transmits
information on ....................... Light travels in glass wires known as .......................

Fibre-optic cables are ...................... and transmit more information without loss and
disturbance,when compared with ...................... and ....................... Optiiai fibres are
made from ......................material.

optical fibres, electric current, lighter, cheaper, light waves, mdion~aves

Science, Technology and
You have just read about lasers and fibre optics. We will now describe space technology;
another major technology to have emerged in modem times.


In a flat dry plain called the Sea of Tranquillity on the moon, is a footprint. This footprint
was left there by Neil Armstrong. He was the first human being to walk on the moon. He
was a member of the 3-man crew carried to the moon by the American spacecraft Apollo 1 1
in July, 1969.
It was a dream come true for mankind -a dream of flying into space and vikiting another
body in the universe. Since then great strides have been made in space technology. The
first step irffhis direction was the development df rockets.

Rockets or Launch Vehicles

Every flight into space begins with a rocket launching. The rocket can lift a satellite or
spaceship carrying human beings and equipment into space. Therefore, it is also called
launch vehicle. The rocket has been known to mankind for centuries. Rockets used as
firecrackers are a common sight on festive occasions in our country. But the rockets that
launch space whicles use highly advanced technology, and, of course, they are far more


Fig. 29.5: Cutaway view of a liquid-fuel rocket. Pump drives fuel and oxidiscr to combustion chamber.

When the fuel in the rocket is set tofire, a stream of hot gases is expelled at a high speed
from its rear end (Fig. 24.5). As ireaction to the thrust of the,gases, the rocket moves in the
opposite direction. As long as the fuel in the rocket burns, shooting out gases, the rocket
continues to accelerate forward, and acquires great speed.
No single rocket fired from the earth can attain in one go the high speeneeded to orbit the
earth, or to escape its pull. Higher speeds are reached by using big and small rockets, in
stages. in the launch vehicle. As the large rocket soars into space and uses up its fuel, lt IS
separated from the smaller rocket and drops off. The smaller rocket already going at high
speed is then fired to accelerate it to an even higher speed. Three-stagerockets are usually
able to achieve speeds suitable for most purposes in space (Fig. 29.6). The final stage of the
launch vehicle carries the payload.
Verify the principle of rocket motion by releasing an inflated balloon with its neck open.
The different kinds of payloads that rockets carry into space include artificial satellites and
space probes to nearby heavenly bodies. The satellites and probes themselves carry
communication and research Quipment.
I Artificial Satellites-Tireless Servants in the Sky
The space crafts that move in an orbit around the earth are called artificial satellites. Most
Fig. 29.6. The multr-stage Indian satellites go around the earth &ce In about 90 minutes at a height of a few hundred
Rocket PSLV. kilometres. But it is possible to launch satellites with a proper speed at greater heights
(around 36,000 kms). They would then move around the earth once in 24 hours and
La*,- n
. *A Ls r*n+;Lnn...r C.."L r"tnll;*nr ""lln,i frltpll;tp~
As you have read in Urut 26%our own INSAT series of satellkes are geostationary
,]lites Every night towards thc cnd of T v news on m y channel. we are shown Modern Developments in
plCtureS Of Clouds over Ind,a. These pictures He laken by INSAT Science and Techndogy-1
to earth, ~~a from monltofing the weather, INSAT satellites are used to
telephone calls. Television PrOgmmmes He also via these
-. .
satellites carry equipment 10 survey the earth's natural resources and monitor weather.
India's satellite Programme has also provided useful information on agricultural land and
prospecting for ores and minerals. Recently, the satellite IRS 2D in the IRS (Indian
Remote Sensing Satellite) series has been launched to smrey India's natural resources
by remote sensing methods.
The effect of living in space on plants and animals is also studied in satellites. At present,
Russia has a space station called Mir going round the earth as a satellite. Crew members
and supplies are regularly sent to @isstation where three or:more personswork at
time, for periods as long as a year. Satellites can pinpoint sources of pollution, spot forest
fires and locate areas of disease in crops and forests. Weather conditions can be monitored
by satellites enabling us to predict storms and prevent damage. Satellites also help in
locating and guiding ships. But-the maximum use of satellites .-
is made for communications.

Space Probes-Journeying to Neighbouring world;

If a spacecraft is di.rected to move out in space, away from the earth, it is called a space
probe. As you read in Unit 11; several unmanned space probes have either passed by or
landed on the planets Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn; Uranus and Neptune. They
have sent back valuable data and photographs of all these planets. So we have come to know
what these planets look like from near, what they are made up of, and what physical
conditions prevail near them.
a) INS AT-2D is.a geostationary salellitc. Which two of the.following statements about
INSAT-2D are true? Write T against the appropriate choices.
i) It circles around the earth at a height of 400 kiiometres. ......................
ii) It completes two orbits around the moon in 24 hours. ......................
.iii) It can be used to give advance warning of cyclones and prevent loss of life and
property. ......................
iv) Experiments on plants are being done aboard INSAT-2D ...........................
V) It has sent valuable data about the neighbouring planets to the earth. ..........;...........
vi) It circles the earth once in every 24 hours. ......................
b) Write in the space given, which of the following spacecraft is a rocket, an artificial
satellite or a spaceprobe?
i) Intelsat can bring home to us on TV any event occurring in the world. ......................
ii) The spacecraft Pioneer sent the first photographs of Jupiter to the
ea;th ......................
i i i ) Saturn-5 put the manned Apollo spacecraft in itsorbit around the
. &.
1 .
.*........ ..
29.4.1 Dividends from Space
When the space programme began. its primary aims were research, adventure and cational
prestige. As it expanded, the investment in it also grew. It is now a highly expensive
undertaking. A natural question to ask is, hdw does it benefit humankind.
,There have been many benefits from space programme. In meeting the challenge of space
travel, scientists and engineers have come out with a stream of innoyations. These are
equally useful on the earth. Some examples are---new materials for.usc'in'industry, e.g., light
but strong alloys, better steel, plastics and adhesives. Highly reliable and tiny electronic
components made for spacecraft are now used in TV and other electronic goods. Computers
have become compact. Medical instruments made for astronauts are used in hospitals. ~ e w
technology for food preservation saves energy. Ultra sensitive fire alarms and fireproof
fabrics have 6een developed. The list is very long.
If you add to it the benefits derived from a satellite, like weather forecasting; prospecting or
communication, it hecomes truly remarkable. As you have read -in Unit 26, the,satellites are
being used in a big way not only for news and information but also for education.
Science, Technology and Programmes initiated from a Cw : places can reach people situated in d~stantand inaccessible
locations. -Most parts of our country can now be reached through satellite supported
As it is with all scientific endeavors, space can also be misused. Either bombs. laser
machines or other kinds of weapons can be stationed there. There is a world-wide and strong
opinion to prevent the use of space for war-like purposes.
Perhaps the futility of war-mongering is realised most if one looks at space travel from ,
another view. Travelling in space has given, man an entirely new view of his home, his
planet Earth. It has shown the earth as a beautiful planet, rich in colour. movement and life.
Our planet is a "closed systemw,dependent only on the sun for energy, with limited
resources that cannot be replaced. It is a spaceship itself. fragile and isolated in the vast
universe-a flicker of life very precious. Certainly, the planet Earth demands preservation as
a single environment. We have only one world. We must protect it from those who because
of their greed or ignorance would use science and technology to destroy it.
Nuclear fission and fusion technology is another such technology which can be put to
destructive use. However, strong public opinion around the world has served to curb its
destructive use to home extent. Let us now examine this technology and various issues
related to its use.


'The Italian navigator has arrived in the new world'
This coded message announced the beginning of the atoyic age on 2nd December? 1942.
The 'navigator' was the Italian-American physicist Enrico Fermi. That afternoon, in a
squash court under the stadium of Chicago University of USA, Fermi and his team of
scientists succeeded in taming the atom for the first time. In the heart of the first atomic'

furnace, atoms were made to split, under strict control, to produce energy. Fermi had indeed
ushered in a new world. Today, in the giant atomic power stations around the world, or'in
nuclear weapons, we can see how far this discovery has taken us.

29.5.1 Nuclear Fission: Splitting the Atom

You know that atoms are made up of a nucleus and electrons moving around the nucleus,
and the nucleus is made up of protons and neutrons. The principal actor in the fission drama
is the uranium atom. The nucleus of the Uranium 238 atom has 92 protons and 146 neutrons.
About one atom in 140 atoms of uranium ha5 143 neutrons in its nucleus.*lt is called
Uranium 235. It is the Uranium 235 that is mostly used to provide fuel for nuclear furneces.
Before the Second World War, two German scientists discovered that if neutrons were shot
at the nuclei of Uranium 235, the nuclei split into two and produced other neutrons to repeat
the process. This is called nuclear fission (Fig. 29.7a).
Nuclear jlssion is the splitting cq'a lur,ye nut leus into nt20~mollernlrclei.


/ -

/ Energy ,-


Fig. 29.7: (a) Nuclear fission: (b) chain reaction.

Modem Developments in
Release of Energy Science and Techndolty-1
When the atom splits, the masses of the fragments and the neutrons produced do not add up
to the mass of the original. A tiny amount of matter disappears. This lost matter turns into
energy. The amount of energy 'E' generated by the. lost matter of mass 'm' is given by the
famous equation due to Einstein:
E = mc2, where c is the speed of light.
c is large (about 300 million metres/s'ec) and c2 is enormous (about 90,000 trillion m2/sec2).
Thus, a small amount of lost matter would get converted into very very large amounts of
Chain Reaction
When the atomic nucleus splits, it not only gives off energy, but also throws out two or three
more neutrons. 'These new neutrons can, in turn, split two or three other ::toms. Ttus way they
release more energy and more neutrons, which will split more atoms. In ol her words, once
the splitting of the nuclei starts, it becomes self-sustaining. This whole prdccss is calleda
chain reaction (Fig. 29.7b). If the chain reaction is allowed to go on, ~t would lead to an
explosive release of energy. Control it by absorbing the extra neutrons and you have the
slow, smouldering reaction of the "nuclear reactor". This serves as a source of energy much
like a thermal power station. We will now describe the nuclear reactor. But how about trying
an SAQ first!

a) State In the hoxes given, which of the following statements about nuclear fission
are true (T) or false (F).
i) Nuclear fission is the process in which two light nuclei are formed wh'en a U
heavy nucleus $plit\.
ii) The 5uln of the mas$es of the resulting nuclei is exactly equal to the mass u
of the parent nucleu\.
ii'i) When an a~omicnucleus splits, it only gives off energy and nothing else.
iv) In nuclear fission a small amount of matter disappears and is converted into
V) The ainount of energy released is huge because it depends on the square of
the speed of light.
b) In the space given below draw the next stepof thechain reaction sllown inFig. 29.7 (b).
Sckwt, Technology and 29.5.2 Nuclear Reactor
Nuclearjission can be maintaived as a controlled cjiain reaction in a nuclear reactor to
produce energy.
Fermi had found from experiment that slower moving neutrons were more effective in
The black 'lead' used in pencils
causing nuclearfission. But most neutrons produced by the splitting of the nuclei are quite
is, in feet, made of graphite fast. A way was required to slow them down. It was found that certain materials slow down
n u krd. rs it is mistakenly the neutrons. Graphite. a pure form of carbon, is one such material. Such materials are called
#led. moderators.
There was still the problem of controlling the chain reaction so created, that is, to stop the ,

reaction or allow it to proceed at will. Materials which absorb neutrons would serve to
control the reaction. The neutrons absorbed by such materials would be removed and would
no longer split atomic nuclei. And the reaction would be controlled. The material usually
chosen as an absorber of neutrons, is cadmium or boron steel.
In a nuclear reactor (see Fig. 29.8a). rod-like containers of Uranium-235 are inserted in holes
made in a huge block of graphite. The graphite block slows down neutrons to enhance the
chain reaction. Control rods of cadmium are also inserted into the graphite block. When
pushed out, they absorb fewer neutrons and the reaction is speeded up.
The problem, then, is to remove the heat and use it to generate electrical energy. This is
achieved by circulating water, or liquid sodium to absorb the heat generated in the graphite
block. This heat may generate steam, which can turn a turbine (a wheel with slanting blades)
a n q h e connected electrical generator (Fig. 29.8b).

Q. 29&. (a) A schematic diagram of a nuclear reactor. (b) heat generated in nuclear fission is used to convert
water into steam in most of the reactors. The steam drives a turbine which is connected to an electric
generator. The steam is cooled and reused.

1 Megawatt - lo6 watts Watt 1s Today we have reactors capable of yielding power upto 500 Megawatts. Smaller reactors
the unit of power, which is the which give 1 to 5 Megawatt power are mostly used for reseasch work. The large ones are
amount of energy used per
used for producing electricity, and driving submarines, or ships. From the uranium rods used
in the reactor, another fissionable material like Plutonium 239 may be obtained. Thus, a
-. reactor set up to generate energy can become a source for obtaining material for making a
bomb. India is committed to the use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.
Give short aqswers in the space provided.
a) What purpose does the huge block of graphite serve in a nuclear reactor?

1 b) How is the speed of a nuclear reaction controlled?

Hazards of a Nuclear World Modem Developments in
Science and Technology-I
The-picture painted abdve seems rosy. Yet, it does have a few shades of grey. There are
many risks associated with the use of nuclear fission energy. These risks have caused world-
wide debate, controversy and at times fear. Accidents have happened in nuclear power
plants everywhere in the world.
In 1986, there was a major nuclear accident at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in the
_thenUSSR. Rare as they are, sltch accidents raise demands fm.a complete ban on nuclear
power plants. However, an unbiased assessment of the pasr accidents indicates that this is
not the answer. A better solution lies in the need to'resssess plant,safety, devise improved
methods of avoiding or containing the extent of mishaps. In India, there has been heated
discussion on this issue, but on the basis of several precautions and safety measures, it has
been dec~dedto go ahead with the programme ~Tgeneratingabout4000 Megawatt power
by t h ~ method.
s by the year 2000 A.D.
Another major problem is the disposal of radio-active waste material from the spent uranium
rods of the nuclear reactors. Several alternatives are being tried out everywhere in the world,
for example, burying it thousands of feet deep in the earth or in the ocean bed. Some western
countries were recently reported to be dumping the highly injurious radio-active waste in
African or South American countries.
From mining of the ore, to nuclear waste disposal,-each step in the nuclear fuel cycle carries
risks. The risks and benefits of each step depend largely on a strict watch over malfunction
and human error. The challenge is to eliminate the risks and to increase the benefits.

29.5.3 Nuclear Fusion: The Ultimate Source of Energy Fig. 29.9: An imaginary sketch
showing a typical nuclear fusion
An energy hungry world views with envy the glowing power of the sun and the stars, which reaction.
is based on a slightly different nuclear process called nuclear fusion.
Nuclear fusion takes place when two light atomic nuclei join orfitse together to form one
nucleus. .

Fig. 29.9 shows one of the simplest fusion reactions. TWO nuclei of heavy hydrogen Heavy hydrogen or deuterium ts
(deuterium! also fuse to give a nuc!eus of helium, a neutron and energy. In this process a an isotope of hydrogen, i.e.,i&
atom has the same number of
tremendous amount of energy is released. Half a kilo of deuterium gas would yield as much electrons, but its nucleus has 1
energy as 1300 tons of coal. What is more, we can get deuterium from sea water. There's protoo and 1 neutron.
about 40 nlillion tons of deuterium in sea water. This could provide us energy for many Hydrogen is the lightest element.
thousand million years. Its atom is made up of one
electron moving around one
Well then, what stops us from tapping this source of energy? The reason is that high proton.
temperature, equivalent of millions of degrees centrigrade, is required to start fusion. And
once the gas has been heated, it must be prevented from expanding; it must be contained.
But no container walls can withstand such temperatures. Hence, entirely new techniques
have to be developed. Much activity is going around the world to generate power through
nuclear fusion. The development of fusion power has proved to be, perhaps, the most
difficult task ever tackled. Nevertheless, if fusion reactors come into being, humankind
would never again face an energy shortage.

29.5.4 The Other Side of the Coin

The atomic nucleus, on the one hand, holds promise for unlimited energy. On the other
hand, it also
poses a threat to the very existence of the living as well as the non-livin'g world.
Mankind still rues the fateful days of August 6 and 9, 1945 when two atom bombs, which
were given the nicknames, the Little Boy and the Fat Man were dropped by America on
Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan. In a flash, the cities crumbled to dust. Hundreds of
thousands of people died or were fatally injured within a few minutes. Many more thousands
of survivors and their descendants are still paying the price for what may be called an
unpardonable crime committed against humanity. They are not only suffering themselves
but also they often give birth to deformed or mentally retarded babies. The horrifying
spectre of the mushroom cloud which was observed over the two cities haunts us to this day.
The first bombs led to lhe manufacture of more bombs. Amenca was soon joined by the erstwhile
USSR, and an arms race commenced with stockpiling of even more deadly weapons.
Hydrogen bombs based on fusion, inter-continental ballistic missiles (each one carrying
Science, Technology and many bombs), and neutron bombs have been added to the nuclear arsenal. It is estimated that
more than 50,000 nuclear weapons have been deployed around the world. Situated in silos, ,

mobile trains or trucks on land, in ships and submarines under the sea, in bombers riding the
sky, thcy are capa%lc of dcstrqjtmg Ule world many times over.

And look ut ~zthrrrit'c lose in the hur.gcrin

The world spends Inore than I trillion dollars (in rupee terms more than Ks. 15 lakh crore) in
a year or. making arms. The USA alone accounts for more than one third of this amount.
Much of this expcnditurc is incurred by the dcveIoping countries like ours. E v e ~ yone seems'to be
arming and buying froin t t ~ cfew big sellcrs in the world. If money werc not used for anns we could
feed and clothe the entire world population. change our hovels to proper houses and remove ,

illiteracy of our pcople.

The arms race cauqes a whole lot of economic problems in all countries, because this is
unprocluctive. The public all over the. world is worried and agitated about the threat to its
existence, and the grave economic tlifficulties faced by it. Only during the last 3 or 4 years. a
ray of hope has bccn scen.Thro~~gh a scrics of treaties, thc USA and Russia have agreed to
disinantlc sonic nuclear missiles. Ncgotialions arc going on to bring about nuclcar disarmament
on a bigger scale. India and the lhcn USSR had givcn a call in I986 for the creation of a nuclear
weapons-frec and non-\.iolcnt world. With such dcvastaling arms, counlncs have to learn to
settle thcir dsputes by egoti ti at ion. ;%lidhave patience and mutual trust to do so.

Fig. 29.10: A nuclear n.~issilek i n g transfomied into doves, the symbols of peace-a reflection of people's desire
for peace and nuclear disarm;iment.

Biotechnology is another emerging technology which holds promise of unlimited benefits if

utilised properly. Let us see what this tech~iologyis.


Biotechnology is, perhaps. best defined as the industrial utilisation of biological systems or
processes. In n sense, therefore, biote(.hnology ha? existed for thousands of years. The most
ancient biotechnological art is fermentation. Living micro-organisms have been used for
centuries to make curds. condiments, cheese and vinegar, to prepare dough for bread or
bhatilras. and to brew alcohol. But today we know much more about these simple processes.
With thehelp of powerful microkcopes and carefully done expe;iments in the laboratory, we
have come to under>tatid that the tiny microbes involved in these processes are small
biochemical factories. And they can be used for a variety of purposes, related to health,
medicine. food, pollution control ctc.
TIze uhilrrv to i.orrrr.olo r l r l nmtrrj?rrlutc.I?II( r o h e ~and I I . rhern,for
~ vcrriolrs uppli,c~utionshas
r ~ . ~ 1 1 1int etdl ~ r( ! I I . I . ( ' ~ hrot~(
I~ We w ~ l dmcribe
111lolog~. l two main technique\ of the new
42 biotechnologq, namely genetic engineering and enzvme immobiliqation.
I )

Modem Developmentsin
29.6.1 Genetic Engineering Science and T&hnoloay.I
The modem biotechnology revolution is based on the understanding and manipulation of the
structure of DNA. DNA is a complex organic molecule that directs the synthesis of proteins
in all living organisms. Thus, it controls the physical structure, growth, reproduction and
function of all living beings. The programme for controlling protein synthesis is coded in the
chemical structure of DNA. The discovery of the code, and the synthesis of DNA in test DNA EXTRACnON
tubes, were important milestones in genetic engineering. However, the foundation of genetic
engineering was laid by the discovery, that QNA suppljed from outside is accepted by
micro-organisms. DNA thus inserted into the cell en from a micro-organism, enables the
cells to make the proteins specified in the codes of the inserted DNA. These new cells can be
cultivated or cloned, until a significant number of cells are available
*. to produce specific,
desired protein molecules.

However, this is not so easily done. When a foreign DNA molecule enters a cell, spcclal
enzymes, called restriction enzymes, rapidly destroy it This problem was solved by the
discovery of the fact that small rings of DNA other than the main DNA strands exist in the
cells of bacteria. These circular DNA molecules are called plasmids (see Fig 29.11). A
technique was developed to insert foreign DNA fragments into plasmids taken out of the
cells. This is known as gene splicing and plasmid becomes a vehicle or a vector. Once the
foreign DNA is joined to the plasmids, m d inserted back in the host cell, the restriction
enzymes fail to destroy it. When the cell reproduces, the foreign DNA .is also replicated.
When the cell carries on its normal functions, the synthetic DNA in the plasmid directs the
manufacture of the protein coded in i ~ .
Thus, through genetic engineering tethniques, it is possible to introduce a foreign DNA into
a host cell and synthesise any desired protein. Large quantities of scarce biologically
significant proteins which are not easily available from natural sources can be manufactured
in'this manner. For example, insulin needed by diabetic patients can now be produced on a
large scale using this technique. Just as cattle are bred for specific functions like high milk
yield, or pulling heavy loads, now-a-days scientists breed bacteria for carrying out special
functions. By selecting suitable bacteria, and using genetic engineering techniques, new variel
of bacteria which can eat man-made artificial products like plastics are being developed.
Otherwise plastic materials, discarded and thrown in garbage, are hard to get rid off. These
special bacteria are affectionately called 'Bugs'. DAUGHTER CELLS
Fig. 29.11: An illustration of
the genetic engineering
technique; a) plasmid DNA is
29.6.2 Enzyme Immobilisation extracted from the host cell; b) it
is cut at the cleavage site by
The use of enzymes as catalysts is well known in a number of industries, such as baking or special techniques; c) foreign
wine making. But punfied enzymes are soluble in water. It is, therefore, not easy to remove DNA is then inserted into the
them from the final product. Further, it is difficult to re-use them. Thus, enzyme activity is plasmid; d) the transformed
plasmid is inserted back into the
lost in one cycle of the chemical reaction. These difficulties led to the development in the host cell. When the transfomd
late 1960s of immobilised enzymes. The trick is to link an enzyme chemically to a large cell multiplies. the foreign DNA
molecule, such as gelatin. It can then be used as a catalyst, and it can be extracted with the is also replicated.
large molecule, for use once again. Immobilised enzymes have been successfully used in the
production of semi-synthetic penicillin and in the large scale production of fructose from
maize. Fructose is sweeter than glucose, yet it has the same calorific value and is used as a
A catalyst is a substance which
low calorie sweetener. aids chemical change in other
substances without itself
undergoing change. Enzymes
Explain in about three lines each what is meant by genetic engineering and enzyme are proteins that control the
immobilisation. biochemical processes in living

Nuclear transfer is another technique

of genetic engineering whcrc the
nucleus ofthe egg cell is replaced by
the nucleus from the cell of a donor
organism, in order to create a clone.
The most famous ekample has been of
'Dolly', the first cloned sheep in Swtlan
This cloning technique has raised a
whole lot o f ethical issues as the
future holds the p~Jsibilitieso f
cloning human beings.
Biotechnology may be domir~atedby microbial and enzyme technology, but it is not
synonymous with them. Both animal and plant cells have their due share in its development.
Riotechnoloeical ex~loitationof animcl cells lies behind the.commercial ~roductionof viral
Modern Developments in
3) State four ways in which we have benefited from our artificial satellite programme. Science and Techndogy-I.

4) What are the risks associated with the use of fission energy?

5) We are listing below a few statements giving applications of the technologies described
in this unit. State against each statement, which technology corresponds to the particular
a) Our natural resources can be explored, TV programmes broadcast
from anywhere in the world can be relayed to any .other desired place. ....................
b) Large amounts of energy can be provided. ....................
c) Brain tumours and blocks m artenes can bc removed. ....................
d) Vlral vaccines and bacteria for removing pollution can be engineered. .....................
e ) Telephonic communications and TV programmes can be carried to large ...................

Self Assessment Questions:
1) a) i) light
ii) signals, long
i i ~ amount.
) area, spread
b) (i)-(ii); (ii)-(111);(iii)-(ii), (iii); (iv)-(ii).
2) a) (iii), (iv), (vi).
b) light waves, optical fibres, lighter, electric current, radiowaves, cheaper.
3) a) (iii), (vi).
b) (i) artificial satellite (ii) space probe (iii) rocket.
4) a) (i) T (ii) F (iii) F (iv) T ;(v) T

5) a) The graphite Meck slows down the neutrons.

b) It is controlled by using absorbers, such as cadmium rods. You can explzin further
how it is done.
6 ) Genetic engineering is the technique of introducing foreign DKA fragments into host
cells so that certain functions specific to the foreign DNA can be carried out within them.
Enzyme itnmobilisation is a technique which is used to chemicnlly bind enzymes to
certain substances so that they are not loct I C d single chemical reaction but can be
extracted and re-uhed.
Science, Technology and - Terminal Questions
Development .
Laser Light Ordinarv Lieht

1) single wavelength, many wave lengths,

2) coherent, incoherent,
3) beam can travel large I beam spreads apart, I
distance without spreading, I
energy concentration at a distance
4) carries large concentration of
energy per unit area. from the source is low.

2) Optical fibres are lighter and cheaper. Further, they can carry much more information.
3) Communication, resource mapping, meteorology, education.
4) Nuclear accidents, waste disposal.
5) a) Space technology; b) Fission and fusion; c) Lasers; d) Biotechnology; e) Optical fibres.

30.1 Introduction
30.2 Semiconductors
What is a Semiconductor
Semiconductor Devices and their Uses
30.3 Computer Technology
Computers at Work
Micms. Minis, Mainframes, 'Monsters' and their Uses
Artificial Intelligence
30.4 Robotics
An Insight into Robotics and Robots
'Where Robots Star
Getting Ready for Robots
30.5 Materials Science and Technology
30.6 Technology Forecasting
30.7 Summary
, 30.8 Terminal Questions
30.9 Answers

In Unit 29 we gave a brief description of some modem technologies, such as lasers, fibre
optics, fission and fusion, space technology and biotechnology. We also discussed their
applications and how society could benefit from their proper use. We continue the discussion
in this unit and desribe other technologies, such as semiconductors, computers, artificial
intelligence, robotics and materials technology. As you have studied in Unit 27, now-a-days
the time interval between a scientificdiscovery and its use as technology has been considerably
reduced. Therefore, an emerging area of study is that of being able to forecast future trends
of research and development in science and technology. So, we will end this unit with a
brief discussion of technologv forecastirlp;.

After studying this unit you should be able to :
state what a semiconductor is and describe briefly some semiconductor devices, such as
p-n junction diodes, transistors and integrated circuits,
describe briefly the working of the five basic units uf a computer, and distinguish
between computer hardware and software,
&plain what is meant by artificial intelligence,
explain what a robot is,
describe how the development of new materials has helped the advance of new
describe the applications of each of the above mentioned technologies,
discuss the importance of technology forecasting.

By now you have studied more than half of this course. You may have been to the study
centre a few times. You might have taken lessons on aud~ocassette-recorders and watched
video programmes on the television set. You niay even have heard some programmes on the
radio. All these gadgets that you have come across, the radio, television, taperecorders,
video cassette-players are products of the semiconductiir techilology.
Scieke, Technology and Semiconductors are the basis of all the sophisticated electronics we have today. ~ i s t a l
watches, calculators, aircraft, spacecraft, satellites, telephone exchanges, lasers and dany
more devices have components or equipment made up of semiconductors. There is hardly a
tool, appliance or item of cnmmunicat~on,long distance transportation, entertainment or
defence that does not use semiconductor technology. These products and the semiconductors
which are used in them have created great impact on many aspects of our social, cultural and
economic development. Therefore, you may like to know what a semiconductor is.

30.2.1 What is a Semiconductor

You must have seen various metals like copper, iron or aluminium. They are all good
conductors of electric current. You also know that many materials like wood. plast~cor
quartz do not conduct current. Such materials are called insulators. A semiconductor, as the
name indicates, is a material whose ability to conducr electric current is greater than that of
an insulator but less than that of metals. Silicon and germanium are the most commonly
used semiconductors. Some othgr compounds like galli~marsenide, inhum antimonide
are-also used.
The ability of semiconductors to conduct electricity depends critically upon their purity, or
mg is an abbreviation for rather their impurity. A pure crystal of silicon or germanium acts more or less as an
milllgramand mg = 1/1000gm. insulator. However if an impurity is added to the crystal it becomes more conductive. By the
way, "impurity" does not mean a 50-50 mixture or even one part of impurity in ten parts of
silicon. In useful semiconductors, a ton of silicon may have I mg of the element arsenic.
Even the tiny bit of arsenic contributes surplus electrons to silicon, which then becomes a
better conductor. Such a piece of silicon would be called an n-type semiconductor. On the
other hand, a like amount of boron would cause a different kind of conduction to take place
and the piece of silicon so treated would be called p-type semicondvctor. The word 'doping'
is used by scientists to describe introduction of such small impurities.

Wh~chone of the follow~ngstatements is correct about germanium, a semiconductor? Its
A pnjunction diode allows current ability to conduct current is:
to flow if its p end is connected to
to the positive end ofthe battery, i) greater than copper and less than plastic.
thus acting as a switch. When the
p end is connected to the negative ii) greater than copper and plastic.
end Of the battery, it does not allow iii) greater than plastic and less than copper.
current to flow in which case the pn
junction acts as an open circuit. iv) less than both copper and plastic.
30.2.2 Semiconductor Devices and their Uses
If a junction is formed between a p-type and an n-type'semiconductor, the device called a p-
n junction diode acquires a peculiar pppeny. It conducts current only in one direction!
Hence, ~t is usedto convert alternating current (a.c.),intodirect current (44 (see Fig. 30.1)
The device acts as a w'itcl'in Fig. 30.1 (a). It acts as ag open circiit h-Fig. 30.1 (b).
And since it is a non-mechanical switch, it acts very fast.

- --
PtYPe n-type
- P-type "-type

- - n -
A -
flow of current no current flow.

w + 111111- J

I battery
I battery

Fig.30.1 :(a) C u ~ mflows

t in a p n junction diode only when its p end is conneltd to the positive end of a battery;
(b) if the tamery terminals are reversed. there is no flow of current.
More complicated devices using n-p-n or p-n-p combinations of semiconductor mat6rial are Modern bvelopments in
called transistors. They have even more interesting properties. They can be so connected to Science and Technology-I1

batteries that a small variation of current on one side, can lead to a large variation on the
other side. In technical jargon, the transistor can 'amplify' small signals. Transistors can also -
be connected to other electrical components (resistors, capacitors etc.) to produce a.c. of
high frequency.

Emitter Base Collector

n P n

Input Output
Signal Signal

L, IJ% Low Voltage

Fig. 30.2 :An n-p-n- transistor.

High Voltage

Semiconductor devices are extremely small in size. Their properties can be controlled at
will. This may be done by changing the amount of doping or by introducing more sections
of p-type or n-type semiconductors on the same crystal. A large number of new
semiconductor devices have been made in this way. Further, by suitable methods, they can
be produced in a large chain or according to a desired pattern'on a non-conducting surface
called a chip. When a large number of semiconductor devices are produced on a single chip
to perform specific functions, the resulting device is called an integrated circuit (IC).
Because of their small size and their sturdiness, and because they consume almost no
energy, these devices hive become very popular as components in TV sets, computers and
many kinds of instruments used for communication and control.
With the present state of technology, we are able to produce millions of semiconducting
elements on a chip of 1 sq. cm., reducing the size and weight of the equipment. For example,
in the 1950s a three ton computer costing a few crore rupees occupied a large room. Less
than four decades later, a microchip based computer costing a few thousand rupees and no
larger than a big brief casecan outdo its forerunner. Radio transmitters or receivers as small
as the head of a pin can be produced. This kind of development opens up many possibilities.
For example, the flow of blood in the veins in a human body can be monitored by tiny
Match the semiconductor devices listed in column 1 with their descriptions listed in column 2.

a) p-n junction diode i) a single small chip containing a large number of

semiconducting devices in a definite pattern.
b) transisror ii) devices in which one side of the semiconducting
crystal is p type and the other n type.
c) integrated circuiE . iii)de-lices using p type or n type semiconductor sand-
wiched between two n type or p type semiconductors,
I Science, Technology and Indeed, the semiconductors, tiny and frapile as they are, have come to occupy an important
I Development
place in our societies. As we have said earlier, the development of semiconductor technology has
had a deep influence on the way we live and on the possibility of man's control over nature.
Apart from providing jobs to millions. as well as mcans of recreation, it has worked uonders
in global communication. However, fears have been expressed that this hind or development
of very versatile equipment will throw people out of jobs. For example, computers will make
large clerical staff unnecessary. Or robots will throw factory workers out of jobs.
But even in the past, old technologies were repkaced by new ones, e g., horse-drawn carriages
by motor driven vehicles. And the past experience shows that while society progresses in
this way, a whole lot of new employment opportunities are created For instance,
introduction of motor vehicles has created jobs in manufacture. maintenance and repair
which are at least as numerous, or even more in number, than the jobs of tonga drivers and
veterinary doctors looking after horses. In the same way. \emiconductor technology has
created job opportunities of its own. The difference is rhar the\e johs requlrr education and
training. Thus, the solution lies not in rejecting the new technology hut in retraining and
orienting people to fit Into new kinds of jobs, using the new technology.
As you have read just now, semiconductor technology has many applications, computers
being the foreinost among them. Let us find out more about the computers.


- --

You may not have seen a computer yet. But their pre5ence in your life I V a fact that cannot be
ignored. Your school marksheet4 may have been preparetl r3n a computer. the electricity and
water bills that you receive may be made on a computer. If you book your ra~l\cayticket in a
big city like New Delhi, it will be done on a computer. The cheque hooks i\sued by banks
are computerised. Indeed, computers have entered many a:pects of our 11bcs
A few decades ago, ,there were only a f e computers
~ in our countq. The! werc enormous and
expensive machines. They were often used for special scientific purposes. Thus, they had
little direct impact on the lives of most people. But, because of the advances in
semiconductor technology, things have changednow. ~housandsof computers, from small
relatively cheap units to large and expensive computers can be found in offices, factories,
schools, hospitals, banks,' airports, railway stations and homes. Plans are already afoot
to equip each district headquarter in lndia with a computer which will he linked through
satellite communication with a large central computer. This computer "network" will maintain alP
kinds of up-to-date information for the whole country. Indeed computers have become a way
of life with us. They have tremendously increased our capacity to exchange mformation,
undertake planning down to the grass roots level and faciliiate solution of very complex

30.3.1 Computers at Work

Computer networks link computers The computer is a simple machine and should not be held in awe. Basically, a computer
through various communicatjon
c h a ~ e l like
s satellites, telephone
simply accepts infoxlnation and stores it. It then processe? intorir~ation,for example,
lines on optical fibres and a special arranges it in some order, adds numbers or multiplies them. Finally, it produces the desired
device calledmodem. Thelinkingof ..
information on an output device, for example. on a screen where it can he wen, or on vawr
computersal' Overthe wor'dthraugh This is much like what we ourselves do daily. We abqorb information through our senses,
networks such as INTERNET has
made communication faster. It has our brains store and process it and then we act. To give an example, if we are asked to
also provided access to a vme5' of multiply two numbers, our brain accepts the input through our eyes or ears, stores the
information right at our doorstep.
numbers and cames out the multiplication. The answer may then be told orally or recorded
on a piece of paper.
The only difference here is that a computer can do all these tasks much faster than us.
Calculations and paperwork that would take weeks, months or years for us to do, can be
done in a few seconds or minutes on a computer. For instance, the average individual can
make 5 to 10 simple calculations per minute. The average computer can make 10,000
complex calculations per second. Fast computers can make millions of complex calculations
in a second. And there would not be a single error in any of these calculations. Computers
can also stort a large amount of data. It 1s because of these factor? that the computers are
being used in almost all walks of life.
There are two major aspects of computers, hardware and software, AN the complex Modem Developmentsin
S e i c e and Technolo@l
electronic circuitry and various other magnetic and mechanical devices make up computer
hardware. Computer software consists of a set of instructions or programmes which run the
t computer hardware. A programme is a set of instructions which the computer executes step
by step. We will now descnbe these two aspects in brief.
.Computer Hardware
The computers used today are many and varied. But each one of them has five basic units.
These five units are shown in a block diagram (Fig. 30.3). Study it carefully and answer the
following question.

Central Processing Unit

Input -
- 3 Output

\ ru Permanent Memory

Fig. 30.3 :The five basic units of a computer

What are the five units of a comauter? List them here.

You have put down input as one. If you were to use the computer, you would feed in your
information and instructions using an input device such as a typewriter-like keyboard (Fig.
30.4a). The information and the programme will be lodged in a computer memory which
could~besomething like a gramophone record (called a "floppy disc" because of its
flexibility) or on a tape.
Once the programme is fed in the computer, the control unit takes over. It selects the
instructions, puts them in a sequence and directs other units to cany out their operations. It
acts like the central nervous system of the computer body.
For example, the control unit directs the memory to supply certain numbers to the
arithmetic and logic unit (ALU) and tells the arithmetic and logic unit to add, subtract,
mul~iplyor divide numbers as the case may be.
The control unit and ALU together are called the central processing unit (CPU). This is the
most important part of a computer. Numerous transistors and components constituting
integrated circuits (ICs), about which you have already read in the previous section, make up
the electronic circuits of a CPU.
Finally, the control unit enables the output to obtain finished results. The results could be
displayed on a monitor like the TV screen, or could be printed on a paper by the printer.
They could also be transferred to a floppy disc (Fig. 30.4b).
The overall cont?ol is exercised by the person operating the computer. Lights, switches and
buttons enable the computer operator to monitor what the various units of the computer are
doine at anv moment.
Science, Technologyand

Fig. 30.4 (a) Some input devices and (b) output devices.

a) Fill in the blank spaces in the following statements about computers, using the words
given below:
Computers have the advantage of ...................... and ...................... over the human brain.
They can make ...................... of calculations per second without making a single
....................... They can also store ...................... amounts of ...................... and

large, thousands, accuracy, data, mistake, information, speed

b) Match the computer components given in column 1 with their characteristics/functions

listed in column 2.

1 2

i) Computer hardware a) transfers the data from the user to the memory of
ii) Input I b) is made up of a set of programmes.
iii) Memory C) displays, records or prints information.
iv) Control Unit d) comprises of all magnetic tapes, printers and the
electronic circuitry.
v) Arithmetic and Logic Unit e) is responsible for the storage of data.
vi) Output f) like a traffic officer, it directs the tlow of
instructions between various units.
vii) Computer Software g) compares two numbers, adds, subtracts, multiplies
or divides numbers.

Computer Software
Computer hardware will do nothing until we tell it what to do. In oiher word\, we must give
it a programme to execute. A computer will do only what it i\ programmed to do and
nothing else. It cannot think the way we do. Through proper programmes, a computer can be
instructed to caby out not only simple arithmetical operations. hut al\o very complex
calculations and reasoning, apart from keeping accounts and making out bill3 etc. There are
two ty,pes of computer software, the application software and the systems software:
Application software is a set of programmes to solve problems or produce information or Modern Developmentsin
Science and Technology-11
data. These programmes are written in special code or notation or "languages". They are
given names such as BASIC. FORTRAN, COBOL. PASCAL etc. Some are more suitable
for accounting, others for mathematical calculations or logical processes.
The systems softbare provides the link between computer hardware and application
software. The code or programming language is converted into appropriate electrical signals
necessary for the operation of the hardware. The systems software is not controlled by the
user, it is built into the system.
a ) I \ FORTRAN 3 language ot appl~cationsoftware or systems software or both'?

b) In the space given below. dram-a diagram showing the relationship between computer
hardware, systems software, application software and the user.

3Q.3.2 Micros, Minis, Mainframes, 'Monsters' and their Uses

Computers come in many sizes and have a large range of computing abilities. The
classification of the variety of computing system> i n tcrrns of size, cost and performance is a
rather difficult task.
Yet one does hear or read about microcomputers. minicomputers, rnainfmes and
superc6mputers (or 'monhters'). This kind of a classification is quite arbitrary. The cost and
perforniance capability of different machines are likely to overlap. For example, a powerful
computer sold as a mini by its maker may do Inore computations. store more data and cost
more than a'small mainframt. computer. Or often you nlaq come across a powerful
microcomputer which perfornib better and ccjstk less than a minicon~puter.
Small computers for use at home. office or business are called microcomputers or personal
computers (PCs). A large variety of tasks can be done on a PC. Its capacity to store and
handle large volumes of data has found many uscs in businehs. Bills and statements can be
processed i n much less time and wit11 rnucl~less effort now. PCs help rnanagers to organise
and handle financial data. and plan accordingly.
A computer aided design (CAD) programme enables engineen to destgn and test their
proposed product on the computer. I n this u;i! t h e are able to correct all the flaws in the
trial design and c o n e out with ,just the right prcbduit to nlanufacture. 1ntercstinglY,the
complex 1Cs that make up the computer harcibarc .lrc thc~iizcl\e\designed on a computer.
At IGNOU. we use PC$ a\ "uordproce\\k)r\" to tlpc and Lorre~tthe mdnu\cnpt\ of the
course\ you redd (Flp. 30.5). W ~ t h typeunter. cha~~pl!lrone nll\pl.l~edfiord or delet~nga
paragraph might require retyping the whole page. In :I PC', the tcxt I\ stored on a floppy disc,
and can be displayed on a screcn. at will. We can make as m m y corrections, additions o r
deletions, as we wdnt. We need to prlnt the cop) un1j dttcr we are fully satisfied.
PC5 can be I~nhedw ~ t hm~rnfrdnleor \upercc,mputer\. Thu\. user\ are now able tci run their
prograninie\ on the md~ntrdmecomputer\ anti obtain re\ult\ on the~rown PC\. A\ the
integrated circults tcchnolog has rmprobed, PCs h a ~ bcconic
c a n ~nseparablcpar1
of our daily lives Alreadj pcople use PCs for preparing household budgets
Science, Technology and At the first station, a robot pastes on each casing a computer printed label. The label tells
which parts are to be fixed into which casings. At each succeeding station, robots read the
label and follow the instructions. Finally, a laser printer prints the information about the
product onto the casings. They are then automatically sorted, packaged and shunted off to
the shipping dock.
Does it seem to be a scene from 2050 A.D.? Well, it's not. This is a real scene from a
computerised factory in USA. The workforce in this factory is made up of robots. Robots
work under the overall control of only four human technicians and produce 600 units per
hour. What are these marvellous machines that are called robots? In this section, we'll
learn about robots and robotics.

30.4.1 An Insight into Robotics and Robots

The science of designing, building und using robots is called robotics. And what is a robot?
Many people think of robots as mechanical people that can see, hear, feel, walk and talk.
This kind of a robot is yet a distant dream. The robots in use today are basically
computerised machines. They can be programmed to d o a variety of tasks. Let's take a
look at a few ex amp::^ that will help us understand what robots are.

A robot can be made to do a large number of jobs. For example, a robot can drill holes of
several different sizes. Robots are also made to sort vegetables, shear sheep, pluck chickens,
form rice cakes and assemble mechanical parts. Robotic trains carry commuters to and from
work. Robots can even assemble delicate watches and computer components. In factories,
robots do spot welding and spray painting.
A robot can also be programmed to change from one job to another and can be 'taught' to
handle new tasks. For example, the same robot could drill a hole as well as place bolts into
the holes drilled by it. A robot can d o one thing for a while, then another and then yet
another. For instance, it can select English character keys and put them into a few
typewriters, then put Hindi keys into another few and then Arabic keys into a third batch.
An industrial robot called 'T' can select its own tools from a rack, drill holes accurate to
0.005 inch and measure the perimeter of 250 different parts. It helps build F-16 fighter
From these examples, it should be clear that u robot is a compulerised, multifunc~tionaland
reprogl-ummable machine lhar peflorms a large variety of l a s h .

However, there's more to a robot than what we've learnt yet. Through the use of artificial
intelligence systems, robots have been given a wide range of human abilities. We will
describe some of them in brief.

Giving Robots Sight

Robots can be made to 'see' an object or a scene. Optical sensors in a robot record the
varying brightness of light coming from the object. To identify an object, the computer
compares its brightness at each point. with the brightness at different points of an image
stored in its memory. If the brightness matches, it "sees" the object and carries out the task
it is programmed for (Fig. 30.6).
Robotic vision is tailored for specific jobs. In industry such vision systems help robots to
install car windows or pick objects and place them elsewhere. 'Seeing' robots are used for
simple inspection jobs.such as verifying whether bottles are filled to the proper level. A
robotic quality control system can be used to detect flaws in products and remove the
rejected ones.

Like every modem technology, robots are also used for modem warfare. An example of
'seeing' robots is the Tomahawk cruise missile which can carry several nuclear warheads
and drop them on a target with deadly accuracy. It can be launched from a ship, a
submarine or a ground unit. several thousand kilometres away from its target. Stored in its
computer memory are a series of images of the landscape along its intended flight path. The
missile surveys the landscape, matches the images with the ones stored in its memory. If it
is drifting off course, it makes correction in its path. It makes a final adjustment before
heading for the target.
Modern DeCelopments in
, ,
Science and Technulvgy-11

Fig. 30.6 : A bin-picking rohnt. A laser is used to illuminate a bin full of parts of varied shapes and sizes. A camera records the
brightness of the objec:s at different points. The ~nbuiltcomputer programme looks for unique features in [he brightness
pattern of the object. The computer then positions and claw the gripper to pick it up.

Robot Arms in Action

A robot can be designed to act like a human arm. Robot specialists draw on the skills and
resources ofboth computer science and mechanical engineering to build robots with "arms"
In the course of a work, the joints of a'robotic arm may have to move into many positions.
Hundreds of thousands of numbers corresponding to these positions are stored in a robot's
memory. Special mechanical devices in the arm translate those numbers into elementary
Typical robot arms do not have fingered hands. Instead, special purpose devices are fitted to
serve as arms With the help of ihese devices, the same robot could spray paint using a spray
gun, or weld metals, or pick up objects to put them in an order (Fig. 30.7).

Walking Robots
Sit back for a while and try to think of a few advantages our legs have over wheels in
moying around.
Wheels can't climb stairs. They can't also step over obstacles or gathrough narrow spaces
or move on soft or uneven ground. Humans and animals can choose the foot-holds that offer
the best support, specially in mountains. In fact, about half the earth's surface is such that it
is very difficult for wheels to move on it. Creeping, climbing, balancing, walking and
running are all possible for legged creatures. Our legs can also bend at knees which makes
adjustment easy.
Therefore, a robot must be given legs so that it is able to move around easily. Making legged
robots has proved to be a challenging job in robo!ics. Although computers have been built
into legged vehicles, the problem4 of balance, coordination and walking on rough ground
have proved difficult to solve.
Along with robot movement, building in natural flexib~lity,manual, touch and hearing
ability in robots are active areas of research in robotic$ these days.

I Naturally, robot eyes, ears, hands and legs have a long way to go befcre they can approach
1 human ability. Robotic Skills of sensing and thinking are elementary at best. Do not forget ,
Science. Technology and The fuels are other kinds of materials-either in colid or liquid state whic-h have'to be light.
give off a lot of energy on burning. and must he such as to bum fast or slow according to
control. These material, have allowed loads of homething like 200 tons to he lifted off from
the earth by a powerful space rocket. 200 tons is the weight of 200 average 5ized cars!
Great developments have taken place in materials which are called polymers, and consist.of
long chains of small molecules joined end to end. Plasticsare one k ~ n dof polymers used
extensively in machines and devices. and so commonly even in rural areas-in the form of
cups, buckets, ropes, bags, rain-coats and other clothing etc. Rubbers are alsa$olyrners. and
so are ceramics from which china-ware and all kinds of insulators are made. There has been
great development in this field. Ceramic car engines are being developed which m i l l be
much lighter than the present cast steel and will be able to operate at a higher inner
temperature and pressure. Engine weight may be reduced to a quarter of what it is today, anti
power may be increased four times. Ceramic magnets are now in conimon use: the ratio of
the magnet's force to its lueight has k e n increased more than a hundred times. Tiny magne1.s
have now the strength of large old-time magnets.

An area of considerable excitement is the de\relopment'of ceramic

superconductors working at much highcr temperatures than before. I t wa5 known for many
years that certain materials became ~ u p c r c o ~ ~ d u c ~m.hen
i n g . they mere cooled to about minus
270 degrees celsins. is.,a small voltage caused a huge current to flow in them, or their
resistance to flow of current becanic. nearly zero. The property was of academic interest only
because reaching 270 degrees helow l'reerlng temperature was itself a veiy difficult icb.
Recent excitement 1s based on tRe tact, that the temperature at which certain ceran1;-
become superconductors has been found to bc nearly 170 degrees higher! This stron;,lj
suggests that with modified ceramic materials we may. one day, have superconducting
materials at room temperature. That would be wonderft~l,as i t would revolutionise all
electric power generation because machines would become tiny as compared to present
heavy weights. Pourer transmission would changc radically because there would hardly be
any loss of power on the wires, and s o would comlnunication systems. It could make electric
trains much cheaper to run, and perhapc lead to electric cars and trucks. Then it would be
possible to replace the present pollution producing and non-renewable resource (oil) using
' vehicles.
Without going into details of other types of materials uwd in medicine and agriculture. some
produced in chemical or drug factories and others hy biotechnological means, it should be
clear that new technologies and new materials go hand in hand - progress in one depends
on the other. The motor car could never have succezded without great advances in
metallurgy and precise machining. lubricating oils and greases. petrol technology, electrical
systems, and production of uear-resimnt ruhher. pneumatic tyres. synthetic materials etc.
Materials have become a subject of research and development in their own right, and science
has so advanced that we are near to the position of making materials with any desired set of
a) List at least two products made of each of the following materials
Metals, alloys. polymer>,fibreglass. vynthetic fibres. liquid crystals.

b) What special kinds of materials have mad= possible advances in fibre optics,
semiconductprs. space technology and superconductors? .
.......................................................................................................................... .............................
........................................................................................ ..............................................................
Modern Developmentsin '
30.6 TECHNOLOGY FORECASTING Science and Technology-I1

With such power of science in relation to technology, and consequently to satisfy social
need, the question arises, can technologies of the future be forecast? Can one say what kind
of devices, machines, weapons etc. will be available ten years from now? This has become a
relevant question from the point of general planning, let us say in a country like India. But

i equally, the answer to the question of future technologies is of interest to private

manafacturers because their profits would depend on it.

The question is more complex than it appears at first sight. The path from science to
technology and then to useful devices and goods in society is not straight forward. Scientific
discoveries sometimes took several decades before society made use of them as devices,
and, thus, produced the need to improve such devices, and add to technology and science. It
was Faraday who discovered the laws of electric induction in 1831, on which all electric '
generators and motors are based, but the generators or motors were'not needed. People were
doing without them. You may think why they did not use electricity for lighting homes and
street. The answer is simple. The bulb had not yet been invented. When the first hot filament
lamp was invented, it could not bum for many hours because good vacuum pumps were not
available. The greater hurdle was, however, the ability to sell electricity and make profit.
This was cleared only in 1881 when Edison developed the electric power station from where
electricity could be distributed, like water, to homes and factories. Its first extensive use was
in factory lighting so that workers could work for longer hours after sunset. So, the idea or
discovery made by Faraday had to wait for almost fifty years before other technologies and
devices were developed, and business could make profits from sale of electricity and longer
hours of factory work.

Although waiting periods between discovery and application have shortened now (see Sec.
27.2), in some technologies they are just a few years, the model described in the previous
paragraph is still valid. There is scientific research in various branches; some of it is abstract
or theoretical, some applied or practical and it makes certain technologies possible. But
other technologies from other areas of research and development may be needed to convert
the possible into likely to be successful technology. The society must also be ready to
utilise it, or the market must be there to make profit (or it must be created by advertising!),
before the likely becomes an actually available technology (see Fig. 30.8). Of course, this
is a highly simplified picture. For example, time delays have not been shown, but they are
involved at each stage, and the connections could be many more than shown here. You also
know, at this stage of the Foundation Course, that today's great multinational corporations
use advertising in a big way to create a market, to make people buy things which they could
1 do without. They may be made ready to buy a thing simply because it is made to appear as a
status symbol, or just because the neighbour has it.

- FSocial need 1
Scientific f / Theoretical. ~ o o l i e d l j or market j

Research Likely
: Possible
Areas 1 Theoretical, Applied 1 1 i/

L - 2

Fig. 30.8

The other side of the picture is that in order to foresee the technology of tomorrow, one has
to keep an eye on the various areas of scientific research, as well as on social and economic
aspects-not only in one country, but in the world at large. And one who is effecfively able
to do so stands to gain tremendously. More scientific research and technological
development can be directed so as to obtain highly useful products-unfortunately, also
weapons! A great amount of money is being spent by countries on research and
development in order to keep ahead of others. Some countries spend a few percent of their
gross national income on this enterprise. We in India spend, at present around 1%. And
c) Seema is a .............:............................... She specialises in designing programmes that Modrrn &ielopments in
Scienrt md Technology41
are built in the computer to contrpl its operation.
d) Feroze prepares software that allows a computer to perform specific fhctions. He is

e) Sharon is a ............................................ for a user organisation. She enters the data

and monitors the computer as it runs.
Systems programmer, electronic engineer, computer operator, application
programmer, hardware sales person.

4) List at least thiee advantages of a robot.


5) State two reasons why technology forecasting is an important area of study today.

Self Assessment Questions
1) iii).
2) a) ii, b) iii, c) i.
3) Input, Control Unit, Arithmetic and.Logic Unit, Memory, Output.
4) a) speed, accuracy, thousands, mistake, large,.data, information
b) i) d, ii) a, iii) e, iv) f, V)g, vi) c, vii) b.
5) a) ~ ~ ~ l i c a tsoftware

6) Artificial intelligence is the ability of a computbr system to produce an output that

seems to corn? from an intelligent human being.
7) a) An automatic machine is usually not computerised. It cannot be made to do any other
job except the one for which it is made. It cannot also usually be recast for an entirely
different use. A robot is.a programmed computer which can do many jobs at a time
and also can be reprogrammed for different uses.
b) A robot 'sees' by comparing and matching the brightness of an object with that of its
image, stored in its computer memory. For robots to act as arms, hundreds of
thousands of numbers giving'their positions are stored in the robot's memory, which
are used in the set of programme guiding the robbt's application. Whenever the
Modern Devdopmentn in
gene splicing: joining pieces of DNA fragments Science end Technology-II
geostationary: moving so as to remain always above the same point on earth's surface.
hologram: a photograph which on being illuminated produws an image of object in two or
three dimensions
hydrogenation: chemical combination with hydrogen
indigenous commodity: originally from the country where it is found
infrastructure: the facilities, services and equipment that are needed for proper functioning
innovation: introducing new ideas and changes in the way something is done or produced
insulator: substance which does not conduct electrical current or heat,
laser: special kind of light with several usefuI properties, such as coherence
lead time: the time gap between the discovery and its actual application in industrial
life expectancy: the average period that a person at a particular age is expected to live
malleable: substance that can be hammered or pressed out of shape without tendency to
return to its original form or to fracture
manipulative skill: skilful way of controlling equipment
neural processing: processing of s i g d s by neurons
nuclear fission: splitting of heavy atomic nucleus into smaller fragments, with release of
neutrons and energy
nuclear fusion: union of atomic nuclei to form a heavier atomic nucleus with release of
neutrons and energy
obsolete: out-dated
open circuit: an electrical circuit in which no current can flow
optical fibre: a special fibre used to carry signals on light beam
paradox: a situation that is strange because it involves two opposite facts which should not
be true at the same time
petroleum pitch: residue left after the distillation of crude petroleum
pneumatic tyre: tyres inflated with air
polymer: a substahce containing largemolecules built as a chain with repeated units
resistor: device which offers resistance to the flow of current
rqbot: computerised machine which can do many jobs and be reprogrammed for use in
other kinds of jobs
robotics: science of designing ahd making robots
Want: a substance used for sealing gaps, cracks or leaks
semiconductor: solid substance whose ability to conduct current is greater than insulators
and less than conductors
socialism: political and economic theory of social organisation which advocates that the
community as a whole should own and control the means of production, distribution and
spot welding: welding between points of metal surfaces in contact
stearine: a substance found in oils and fats, which is used in manufacturing soaps
superconductor: conductors that offer no resistance to flow of current
systems software: software built into the computer
tallow: animal fat
technology: application of science for problem solving
transistor: a semiconductor device with three electrodes used to amplify signals
turn key technology: technology that is ready to use

1. ~ e ' ~
w u i dto
e Sci-, Isaac Asimov, Penguin, 1987.
Unit 28 Technology and Economic Development
Unit 29 Modem Development in Science and Technology -
Unit 30 Modem Development in Science and Technology -
Block 8 : New Perspectives
Unit 3 1 Perceptions and Aspirations
Unit 32 Science -The Road to Development
AudioNideo Programmes
Audio : , 1) Science and Society (Block 1)
2) Astronomical Development in India (Block 3)
3) Measuring Astronomical Distances (Block 3)
4) Evolution of Man (Block 3)
5) The Forest Ecosystem (Block 4)
6) Population Pressure (Block 4)
7) Common Misconceptions about Health (Block 5)
8) Human Factors in Engineering (Block 6)
9) New Information Order (Block 6)
10) Technology and Self-Reliance (Block 7)
11j Nuclear Disarmament (Block 7)
Video : 1) Method of Scienge (Block 2)
2), A Window to the Universe (Block 3)
3) The Story of a River (Block 4)
4 ) Green Revolution (Block 5)
5) Infectious Diseases (Block 5)
6) Jean Piaget Development Stages of a Child (Block 6)
7) JNSAT (Block 6)