INDUSTRIES

I-LARGE AND SMALL INDUSTRIES

Manufacture of Grinding Wheels.

Manufacturing of grinding wheels is an important industry in this district. The Grind well Company which was commissioned in. 1940 at Mora (Uran) can be regarded as a pioneer concern in this field. During the last World War it was started under the guidance of two Czech technicians. During the critical years of war the technical equipment required could not be imported due to the existence of various sea danger zones or submarine menace. Such technical equipment was manufactured in India. In the post-war years the industry however could not stand the competition from foreign manufacturers of grinding wheels with the result that it was granted protection by the Government on the recommendation of the Tariff Commission. Consequently output of the concern increased from 1,200 tons in 1941 to 1,800 tons in 1953.

The basic raw materials required by the concern consist of synthetic aluminium oxide and silican carbide steel which are imported from the U. S. A. and West Germany. Ceramic and resinoid bonds which are used for bonding are partly imported and partly manufactured in India. The following table shows the figures of consumption of raw materials and its value during 1955-58.

TABLE No. 3

 

1955

1956

1957

1958

Abrasive grains consumed (in lbs.).

21,63,001

26,31,942

25,38,738

19,71,691

Value of abrasive grains consumed (in Rs.)

14,83,964

18,20,378

18,31,377

14,51,642

Bonds and clays consumed (in lbs.)

4,25,666.

4,92,373

5,14,299

4,83,654

Value of bonds and clays consumed (in Rs.)

1,91,163

2,23,269

2,33,618

2,04,944

The above table reveals that the consumption of abrasive grains which was 21,03,001 lbs. in 1955 rose by 25 per cent in 1956, but later on showed a decline by 25 per cent in 1958 over the consumption in 1956. This decline during these two years related to the general fall in the productivity due to shortage of steel. Similarly consumption of bonds and clays which went up by 21 per cent during 1956 and 1957 declined by 10 per cent in 1958

The investment pattern of the concern in 1954 and in 1959 was as follows:

 

1954

1959

Fixed capital (in Rs.)

16,00,000

23,45,857

Working capital (in Rs.)

14,80,000

21,04,298

Total investment (in Rs.)

30,80,000

44,50,155

The table reveals that the investment in the concern rose by about 44 per cent during the period 1954-59 as gradual expansion was taking place in the productive activity of The concern during this period.

The total employment in the factory was 675 in 1953 and 400 in 1959. This fall in the employment by about 41 per cent can be explained in terms of the new schemes of rationalisation adopted by the concern. Both male and female workers are employed in the factory. The daily basic wage of a male worker varies from Rs. 1.16 to Rs. 3 and that of a female from Re. One to Rs. 1.44. Corresponding to the decrease in employment, the total wage bill of the concern also fell from Rs. 6.2 lakhs in 1953 to Rs. 3.45 lakhs in 1959.

The main products of the concern are bonds and abrasive products such as grinding wheels and abrasive paste. The following table shows the statistics of production of the concern during the period between 1955 and 1959.

 

1955

1956

1957

1958

1959

Production (in tons)

638

882

966

783.3

674.5

Approximate value of production

(in Rs.)

25,00,960

34,57,440

37,86,720

30,70,536

26,44,040

The table reveals that there was a 30 per cent decrease in the total production of the concern in 1959 over the production of 1957. The shortage of steel and the two months' strike of the workers were causes for the fall in production. The articles produced by the concern have a country-wide demand. The factory has employed its own agents throughout the country to canvass its sales in the market. The demand for its products is usually from steel plants and engineering industries.

The factory is equipped with machinery such as mixing machines, hydraulic presses, lathe machines, speed-testing machines, drilling machines, shaping machines, water pump, pug mill, air compressors and tools like drills, taps, dies, bench-fitting tools, die socket, tap wrench, turning and boring tools, gauges, etc. It consumed 72,000 gallons of light diesel oil and 84 barrels of lubricating oil during 1959.

Process of Production.

Abrasive grains are mixed together in a prescribed proportion along with some kind of bond. This mixture is pressed according to a certain specification and a raw wheel is thus made which is kept in a dry room to remove its moisture. The wheel so dried is "fired in kilns" and is "diessed" in order to give it a required size. It is then "inspected" to ascertain its balancing, speed, quality and is made ready for the market.

Electricity Generation.

The region of Western Ghats near Khopoli which gets heavy rain during the monsoons is quite suitable for erection of a plant generating electricity. For centuries the rain water in this region flowed eastward as its western course was barred by the natural barriers of the Ghats. The abrupt drop of water on the western side of the Ghats was suitable for a plant for generating electricity. A scheme was prepared by Jamshedji Tata and three companies were established between 1910 and 1920 for the "generation of electricity. This power system is one of the largest in the South-East Asia. It serves an area of 1,000 square miles in the Bombay-Poona region and has a generating capacity of 2,74,000 kw. The three generating stations of this power system are located at Bhira, Bhivpuri and Khopoli in Kolaba district.

The total capital investment in the three stations was about Rs. 13.25 crores and the total employment about 740 in 1954. The total wage bill in the same year amounted to Rs. 8.3 lakhs. About 90 persons were employed as supervisors or technicians and were paid Rs. 4.5 lakhs as salary in 1954.

At Janjira there is one unit generating electricity, which was commissioned in 1934. Originally it was a private concern but was taken over by the State Electricity Board in 1954. It supplies direct current generated by three diesel engine sets of 18 kw., 23.5 kw. and 10 kw. each. The total generation of electricity by the concern was 58,000 units in 1955-56, 58.300 in 1956-57 and 59,600 in 1958-59. It employed 17 skilled and unskilled workers, each unskilled worker being paid Rs. 30 per month and skilled Rs. 55 per month in 1959. The supply of electric energy by the concern was limited to Janjira town only.

Rice Milling.

As paddy is the main crop of the district, rice milling forms one of its major industries. There were very few rice mills prior to the First World War when paddy was dehusked by the hand process. A number of rice mills were started thereafter in the period between the First World War and the Great Depression. The industry grew rapidly as there was abundant water-supply, cheap power, and vicinity of market. During the thirties of the century it received a setback due to the fall in prices in the days of the Great Depression. It thrived again during the Second World War when Government imposed restrictions upon the movement of rice. In 1960, there were about 125 rice mills in the district concentrated in centres like Pen, Panvel, Karjat, Mahad, Khopoli, Goregaon and Poynad. Panvel taluka alone accounted for about 35 rice and poha mills including five registered under the Factories Act. The total number of these mills registered under the Factories Act in the district was 16. These mills were engaged in milling Kolamb, Jada and Rata varieties of rice which were locally produced. A few of them were also engaged in making pohas (rice flakes). Most of these concerns had their own business of paddy-milling and a few of them did job-work at a fixed rate of milling which varied from Rs. 8 to Rs. 10 per Khandi.

The total investment in the industry was over Rs. 20 lakhs. About Rs. 11.10 lakhs including Rs. 5.4 lakhs as working capital were invested in 15 factories registered under the Factories Act in 1954.

It is a seasonal industry which works from November to May. The total employment in the industry was near about 425 persons in 1960. The daily wage of a temporary worker varied between Rs. 1.50 and Rs. 2.25 and that of a permanent one varied between Rs. 50 and Rs. 60 per month. The total annual wage bill of 106 workers who were employed in 15 registered factories was Rs. 53,000 and that of 26 technicians Rs. 30,000 in 1954. Most of the establishments dehusked paddy brought from outside in addition to paddy available locally. More than 45 lakhs of maunds of paddy was dehusked in the whole of the district in 1959. The total turnover of these establishments was 2.3 lakh Bengali maunds of rice worth Rs. 3.8 lakhs and 3,400 maunds of poha worth Rs. 86,000 in 1954. Rice was marketed to Bombay and Gujarat. The machinery used in these concerns consisted of paddy separators, hullers, polishers and poha-making machines.

The husked rice is first soaked in cold water for 48 hours and scalded and put in an open basket to drain. It is slightly parched before it is pounded in a stone mortar or in a poha-making machine in which the crushed pulp forms into flat lozenge-shaped pieces. The husk is separated by a separator.

Paper and Paper products.

The district has a distinct advantage for the development of paper and paper products industry. Abundant supply of water, electricity, raw material and cheap labour which are the prerequisites of this industry have helped to develop two such units, one at Khopoli and the other at Apta, manufacturing paper and paper boards. The units were started during the Second World War. But due to rising cost and irregular supply of waste paper in the post-war period the unit at Apta was amalgamated with the unit at Khopoli. In 1949, one more unit manufacturing paper and paper pulp was shifted from Bombay to Khopoli. In 1959 there were two units manufacturing paper and paper products in the district.

The total investment in the two units during 1953-57 was as follows:

 

1953

1954

1955

1956

1957

Fixed capital (in Rs.)

28,70,941

34,26,941

33,99,784

29,82,385

31,73,860

Working capital (in Rs.)

3,39,733

5,16,664

4,37,206

9,56,863

12,21,706

Total investment (in Rs.)

32,10,674

39,43,605

38,36,990

39,39,248

43,95,566

The total employment in the industry went up from 197 in 1953 to 246 in 1957 and the wage bill from Rs. 89,768 to Rs. 2,20,356 during the same period.

Wood pulp, rags, waste paper, straw and hay constitute the main raw materials of the industry. Wood pulp was obtained from foreign countries like the U. S. A., Sweden and Norway; rags, waste paper and chemicals from Bombay, Hyderabad and Delhi. Hay and straw was locally available. The total consumption of raw materials and its value during 1953-57 was as follows:

 

1953

1954

1955

1956

1957

Wood pulp (in tons)

91

160

198

314

526.90

Value of wood pulp (in Rs.)

66,957

1,24,800

1,48,500

3,20,000

4,65,595

Waste paper (in tons)..

878

1,365

3,027.65

3,749

3,671.95

Value of waste paper (in Rs.)

2,17,491

4,01,080

8,91,700

12,14,567

11,61,457

Quantity of rags (in tons)

111

130

155

33.25

13.55

Value of rags (in Rs.)

17,873

21,430

23,250

6,756

3,440

Straw (in tons)

--

--

85

8,044

--

Value of straw (in Rs.)

--

--

5,100

41,400

77,460

The above table shows that during the five years (1953-57) there was more than proportionate increase in the consumption of wood pulp and waste paper, the percentages being 480 and 318, respectively, and that there was a corresponding decrease in the consumption of rags from 111 tons to 13.55 tons. The value of fuel consumed also increased during that period.

The main products of the industry were printing and binding paper and paper boards. The following table shows the total production and its value during 1953-57.

1953

1954

1955

1956

1957

Total production (in tons)

922

1,236

N.A.

N.A.

N.A.

Value of production (in Rs.)

7,08,234

11,98,630

13,41,844

--

23,50,125

The products of the industry had a demand all over the country. Board-manufacturing machines, cylinder, mould machines and presses formed the machinery used in the industry.

Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals.

There is one concern at Panvel manufacturing Ayurvedic medicines. It was a small establishment started in 1872 but was gradually expanded by the close of the last century. The increasing demand for its products in the later years and the complexity of processes necessitated a change in the technique of its production which was introduced in 1903. The next three decades witnessed great strides in its development programme which was intensified with the development of its botanical garden for carrying out research in Ayurvedic medicines in 1935. The concern which was a proprietary one till then was converted into a Private Limited Company in 1938.

The investment pattern in the unit during 1953-57 was as follows:

 

1953

1954

1955

1956

1957

Fixed capital (in Rs.)

7,08,671

6,88,128

6,84,435

6,68,931

6,40,033

Working capital (in Rs.)

9,93,125

11,02,444

11,56,927

12,24,658

14,60,592

Total investment (in Rs)

17,01,796

17,90,572

18,41,362

18,93,589

21,00,625

The employment in the industry during 1951 and 1960 was as follows: -

1951

341

1953

241

1957

283

1960 250

Raw materials used in the industry constituted sulphur, minerals, oils, acids, ammonium, calcium, sodium compounds, coal, glycerine, drugs, herbs and roots, pearls, gold, gur, honey, etc. Most of the material except roots and herbs were obtained from Bombay and other places. Roots and herbs were obtained from the local forest. The value of raw materials consumed by the factory was Rs. 6,11,649 in 1953 and Rs. 9,90,160 in 1957. It utilised fuel such as coal, wood and electric power worth Rs. 18,183 in 1953 and Rs. 27,409 in 1957.

The main products of the industry were kadha, asava, churna, bhasma, gutika (pills), etc. The total production of the concern during 1953-57 nearly doubled and its value increased from Rs. 11,19,307 to Rs. 23,50,125. The products were marketed all over the country through the agents appointed by the concern. The machines and appliances used were mortars of various sizes, filter machines, tablet-making and bottle-washing machines.

Pharmaceutical Manufacturing.

A pioneer concern manufacturing sodium salicylate, salicylic acid and aspirin was started at Khopoli in 1954. One of the main features of this factory was that It was developed by Indian technical personnel. The total investment in it in 1960 was Rs. 33,67,278 including Rs. 16,67,778 as working capital. Purified salicylic acid, acidic anhyderide phenol, etc., which are imported from foreign countries constitute its raw material. The concern consumed raw materials worth Rs. 15,00,000 in 1959. It uses coal and electricity as fuel. The consumption of coal was 130 tons and that of electricity 2,50,000 units per month in 1960.

It employs both skilled and unskilled workers in permanent as well as temporary cadres. The total employment in the concern was 210. The annual wage bill of the factory was about Rs. 1,50,000. It provides facilities such as canteen, sports club, etc.

The main pharmaceutical products are syrups, tablets, injections and chemicals such as sodium salicylate, salicylic acid (tech.), salicylic acid (B. P.), sodium phenate, aspirin, etc.

The production per month of each category in 1960 was as follows:

Pharmaceuticals-

syrups-8,000 lbs.

tablets-1,00,000 tablets.

injections-1,25,000 c. c.

Fine chemicals-

sodium salicylate-50,000 lbs.

salicylic acid (tech.)-70,000 lbs.

salicylic acid (B. P.)-4,000 lbs.

sodium phenate-25,000 lbs.

aspirin-36,000 lbs.

salicylamide-5,000 lbs.

methyl salicylate-5,000 lbs.

The products are marketed all over the country and to the Middle East.

Machinery and equipment such as autoclaves, sublimers, centrigues, tableting, bottle filling and vial-capping machines, coating pans, ovens, evaporation pan and driers are used in the process.

Cotton Textiles.

There is a powerloom factory at Uran which was initially started in 1932. It was closed for about ten years from 1934 to 1944 due to 'financial difficulties. The total investment in it during 1947- 1950 and 1954 was as follows:

 

1947

1948

1949

1950

1954

Fixed capital

16,127

14,820

15,545

14,657

20,000

Working capital

18,255

15,220

18,373

20,685

10,000

Total capital

35,382

30,040

33,918

35,342

30,000

The employment in the factory went down from 25 in 1947 to 15 in 1949 and to 14 in 1950. The following table shows the number of persons employed in it and wages paid to them during 1947-1950 and 1954:

 

1947

1948

1949

1950

1954

Number of workers

25

12

15

14

39

Wages paid (in Rs.)

19,013

N.A.

10,600

--

17,000

The factory had its own diesel engine of 18 H. P. for the generation of electric energy. Cotton yarn was imported from Bombay. The cost of fuel and cotton yarn during 1947-50 and 1954 was as follows:

 

1947

1948

1949

1950

1954

Value of fuel

1,772

1,013

1,305

1,366

N.A.

Quantity of yarn consumed (in lbs.).

37,337

8,007

15,100

18,535

36,000

Value of yarn

55,049

12,510

24,537

40,206

48,000

It produced mainly cloth of medium and coarse varieties like grey long cloth, coating and canvas. The quantity and value of products and by-products during 1947-50 was as follows:

 

1947

1948

1949

1950

Quantity of woven pieces (in lbs.)

34,223

7,849

12,174

17,994

Value of woven pieces

80,210

24,410

35,428

52,085

Quantity of by-products (in lbs.)

112

--

--

--

Value of by-products

32

--

--

--

The above table shows that the factory was not working to its installed capacity during 1948 and 1949 when its production was only 7,849 and 12,174 pounds of cloth, respectively. In the years 1947 and 1950, it was 34,223 and 34,994 pounds, respectively. In 1954, it produced 2.4 lakh yards of cloth. Most of the cloth was marketed to Bombay.

The factory had 10 powerlooms, one warping machine, one beaming machine and a winding machine.

Engineering Industry.

There is a cutlery manufacturing concern at Pen which produces penknives, scissors and similar other articles. The concern which was established in1930 under went an expansion during the live years preceding the Second World War. Then its products were marketed to South Africa. In 1948, the factory was closed due to labour disputes and was reopened in 1952. The total investment in it which was Rs. 34,000 (including Rs. 4,000 as working capital) in 1954 rose to Rs. 40,000 in 1959. The employment also increased from 14 to 20. The annual wage bill of the establishment during the same period rose from Rs. 4,500 to Rs. 7,000. The concern consumed raw materials like iron, steel, and wood worth Rs. 1,100 in 1954 and produced articles like penknives, table-knives and scissors worth Rs. 9,000 in 1954 and worth Rs. 10,000 in 1958. The machinery consisted of appliances like drop stamps, power presses, grinders, drilling machines and circular saws.

Coated Fabrics.

There is a small-scale unit manufacturing adhesive tapes at Khopoli. It was started in 1957. The factory is situated in the premises of the Alta Laboratories Private Ltd. Its capital structure was as follows in 1959-60

 

Rs.

Plant, machinery and buildings

1,15,000

Other assets

36,000

Working capital

60,000

Total

2,11,000

Cloth, adhesive dopes and plastic solvents constitute its main raw materials. Cloth and solvents are obtained locally and plastics and chemicals are imported from foreign countries. The factory consumed raw materials worth Rs. 6 lakhs in 1959. The total employment was 40 in 1959-60. Temporary workers are recruited as and when they are needed. Nearby villages are the source of labour supply. The skilled worker gets about Rs. 2 per day and unskilled one Rs. 1.25 per day. The annual wage bill of the factory was Rs. 20,000 in 1959.

The products of the factory are adhesive tapes, varnish tape, pack tape, medical tape and water proof tape. In 1959-60, the factory produced 28,00,000 yards of tape of different varieties and 7,000 yards of cloth valued at Rs. 2.75 lakhs. The products are marketed all over the country.

Printing.

There are about ten printing presses in the district. Of them the press situated at Panvel was started in 1907. All others were small units. The total investment in the unit at Panvel was Rs..48,000 including Rs. 9,000 as working capital in 1954. It employed 21 persons who were paid Rs. 19,400 as wages. The concern did mostly local job-work. The machinery used consisted of printing machines, treadles and hand presses, cutting machines and stitching and perforating machines. Accessories like paper, ink, type metal, stationery and binding materials were imported from Bombay. It consumed raw materials worth Rs. 31,700 and did work worth Rs. 71,000 in 1954.

Salt Making.

Salt making is an old industry of the district. Ever since the beginning, it is followed by Agris. During the last century salt was produced at Alibag, Pen and Roha. In 1874 all the salt-works in Alibag and Roha were closed and most of Them in Alibag were turned into rice fields. There were as many as 34 salt-works near about Pen, each with an area varying from 5 to 125 acres. Washi, in Pen taluka, was one of the important salt producing villages. The salt-works at Pen were owned by 350 persons and included 4,614 pans covering an area of 1,572 acres. In 1880-81, 5,98,083 maunds or 22,151 tons of salt was produced at these pans which were let to Agris at different rates of rent varying from a half to a fourth of the net produce. The employment in the industry which was 745 in 1911 and 688 in 1931, rose to 1,492 in 1951. Salt is now extensively manufactured at Shewa, Karanja, Uran and Pen. The industry gives employment to 4,500 persons.

The tools and implements used in the industry consist of datari, datara, phawada, sieve, baskets, tipni, pendsa, soop, etc. Dalari is a simple device consisting of a wooden plank having saw edge with vertical teeth and with a handle of bamboo stick used for raking salt bed to help formation of salt crystals.

Datara which costs about Rs. 25 is a similar instrument as datari but bigger in size. It is used for manufacture of a special variety of salt called kurkutch. Phawada is used for extraction of salt from pans.

Sieve is a wire gauge usually 4' x 2' used for grading of salt.

Tipni is a wooden implement with a flat round bottom used for solidifying earth.

Pendsa is a simple wooden blade for cutting mud earth for repairing embankments of salt pans.

Soop is an interesting device for lifting brine by manual labour from one compartment to the other.

It is a seasonal industry which works from January to May and employs about 4,500 workers, whose main occupation is salt making and subsidiary, agriculture. Salt pans at Pen and Shewa employ more than 60 per cent of the total number of persons employed in the industry. These workers are employed on piece rate basis. Each worker gets about Rs. 3 per brass of earth work done for repairing embankments and filling up the breaches to the builds. The wages of those who are engaged in salt manufacturing vary between Rs. 54 and Rs. 60 each per month. In Pen a worker engaged in repairing bund is paid Rs. 2 per brass of earth work and a person engaged in salt manufacturing about Rs. 1.50 per day. Three varieties of salt, viz., Kurkutch, Vajani and Kuppa are produced. The total production of salt exceeds 40 lakhs of maunds valued at about Rs. 19,00,000 per year. The cost of producing a Bengali maund of salt varies from 22 nP. to 30 nP. at Shewa and Karanja and from 30 nP. to 35 nP. per Bengali maund at Uran.

Salt produced at these centres is marketed to Andhra, Mysore, Bihar and Bombay. All the purchase and sale operations in the industry are transacted through an agency of middlemen.

There was one salt producers co-operative society at Uran in 1958-59, which had 1,582 members, Rs. 16,105 as share capital and Rs. 1,589 as reserve fund. It produced 1,080 Bengali maunds of salt in the same year.

Process of Salt Making.

Salt is manufactured from sea brine. Mora, Karanja and Rewas creeks feed the necessary brine supply through their inlets to the numerous salt works. After the rainy season rain water collected in the salt pans is drained out and preliminary operations such as repairing bunds are undertaken. The workers make salt-pans or kundis by beating the earth with a flat plank until the ground gets hard. In the beginning of March sea water is admitted through inlets of the creek into the reservoirs of salt works through specially constructed sluices and stored there for further processing. The brine thus stored in the reservoirs is taken to condensers till the density reaches 23 Bc. This highly concentrated brine is permitted to enter in specially prepared pans measuring 80' x 25', where salt starts precipitating and when the brine reaches 29 Bc. the salt is scrapped and brought under storage. The residual brine is drained out completely after cultivation of each crop. The whole process takes ten to fifteen days.

TOP