Lifelines of National Economy Class 10 Notes Social Science Geography Chapter 7

Transport, Communication and Trade

All goods and services used in our day to day lives are not available in our immediate surroundings- some have to be transported from different places. The movement of these goods and services from their supply locations to demand locations necessitates the need for transport. Professionals like the traders help make the products come to the consumers by transportation. The pace of development of a country depends upon the production of goods and services as well as their movement over space. Efficient means of transport are prerequisites for fast development.

The movement of these goods and services can be over land, water and air. Transport can also be divided into land, water and air accordingly. For a long time, trade and transport were restricted to a limited space. But, with the development in science and technology, the area of influence of trade and transport has expanded multi-folds. Quick, efficient and easily available transport has made it possible for the world to be converted into a large village. Partnered with a developed communication system, the transport system has made the world more accessible and open. Therefore, transport, communication and trade are complementary to each other.

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

India is well-linked with the rest of the world despite its vast size, diversity and linguistic and socio-cultural plurality because of railways, airways, waterways, newspapers, radio and internet. These facilities have led to its socio-economic progress. Local to international level trade has added to the vitality of Indian and world economy. A dense and efficient network of transport and communication is a prerequisite for local, national and global trade.
Trade has enriched our life and added to the amenities and facilities which help humans live more comfortably.



  • India has one of the largest road networks in the world, aggregating to about 56 lakh km.
  • Roadways have preceded railways in India.
  • They are easy to build and maintain and for this ease, they are preferred over railways.

The growing importance of road transport vis-a-vis rail transport is rooted in the following reasons:

  • The construction cost of roads is much lower than that of railway lines.
  • Roads traverse highly dissected and undulating topography.
  • Roads can negotiate higher gradients of slopes and traverse mountains such as the Himalayas.
  • Road transport is economical in the transportation of few persons and for relatively smaller amount of goods over short distances.
  • Road transport provides door-to-door service.
  • The cost of loading and unloading goods is much lower.
  • Road transport proves to be a good feeder to other modes of transports.
  • Roads provide a Link between railway stations, air, and seaports.

In India, roads are classified into six classes according to their capacity.

  • Golden Quadrilateral Superhighways
  • National Highways
  • State Highways
  • District Roads
  • Other Roads
  • Border Roads

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

Golden Quadrilateral Super Highways:
The roads Link Delhi-Kolkata-Chennai-Mumbai and Delhi by six-lane Super Highways. The North-South
corridors linking Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir) and Kanyakumari (Tamil Nadu), and East-West Corridor connecting Silchar (Assam) and Porbandar (Gujarat) are Golden Quadrilateral Super Highways. These Super Highways are constructed to reduce the time and distance between mega Indian cities. These highway projects are being implemented by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI).

National Highways:
National Highways link extreme parts of the country. These are the primary road systems and are Laid and maintained by the Central Public Works Department (CPWD). Major National Highways run in North- South and East-West directions.

Frequently Asked:
The historical Sher-Shah Suri Marg is called National Highway No.l, between Delhi and Amritsar.

State Highways:
Roads linking a state capital with different district headquarters are known as State Highways. The State Public Works Department (PWD) maintains these highways in State and Union Territories.

District Roads:
These roads connect the district headquarters with other places in the district. These roads are maintained by Zila Parishad.

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

Other Roads:
Rural roads link rural areas and villages with towns. These roads received special impetus under the Pradhan Mantri Grameen SadakYojana.
Under this scheme, every village in the country is linked to a major town in the country by an all season motorable road.

Border Roads:
Border Roads Organisation undertakes construction and maintenance of roads in the bordering areas of the country. BRO was established by 1960 for the maintenance of strategically important roads in the northern and north-eastern border areas. These roads have improved accessibility in areas with difficult terrain leading to economic development of these areas.

Roads are also classified according to the type of material used for their construction. They are divided into metalled and unmetalled roads.

  • Metalled roads may be made of cement, concrete or even bitumen of coal. They are all-weather roads.
  • Unmetalled roads are made of mud, clay or uneven stones and go out of use in the rainy season.

Example 1.
Which two of the following extreme locations are connected by the east-west corridor?
(a) Mumbai and Nagpur
(b) Silchar and Porbandar
(c) Mumbai and Kolkata
(d) Nagpur and Siligudi
(b) Silchar and Porbandar

Railways is the principal mode of transportation for freight and passengers in India. Railways facilitate people conduct multifarious activities like business, sightseeing, pilgrimage along with transportation of goods over longer distances. Indian Railways has been an integrating force for more than 150 years.

Railways in India bind the economic life of the country as well as accelerate the development of the industry and agriculture.

The distribution pattern of the Railway network in the country has been largely influenced by physiographic, economic and administrative factors. The northern plains with their vast level land, high population density and rich agricultural resources provided the most favourable condition for their growth.

Rivers requiring the construction of bridges across their wide beds pose some obstacles to the construction of these tracks. In the hilly terrains of the peninsular region, railway tracks are laid through low hills, gaps or tunnels.

Himalayan mountainous regions are unfavourable for the construction of raiLway lines due to high relief, sparse population and lack of economic opportunities. The terrain of sandy plains of western Rajasthan, swamps of Gujarat, forested tracks of Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha and Jharkhand were difficult to conquer for setting up of railway lines as well.

The contiguous stretch of Sahyadri could be crossed only through gaps or passes (Ghats).

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

The development of the Konkan railway along the west coast has facilitated the movement of passengers and goods in India’s busiest and most significant economic region.
There have been instances of sinking of track in some stretches and landslides.
Railways are more significant for our national economy than all other means of transport put together.

Rail transport suffers from various issues.

  • Many passengers travel without tickets.
  • Thefts and damaging of railway property is another issue. People stop the trains, pull the chain unnecessarily and damage the railway due to their negligence.


  • The Indian Railways is the largest public sector undertaking in the country. The first train steamed off from Mumbai to Thane in 1853, covering a distance of 34 km.
  • The Indian Railway is now reorganised into 16 zones.

The pipeline transport network is the newest form of transportation. They were used to transport water and other liquids in the past. Today, they are used for transporting crude oil, petroleum products, natural gas from oil and natural gas fields to refineries, fertilizer factories and big thermal power plants.


  • Solids can also be transported through a pipeline when converted into slurry.
  • The far inland locations of refineries like Barauni, Mathura, Panipat.
  • Gas-based fertilizer plants exist everywhere because of pipelines.
  • Initial cost of laying pipelines is high but subsequent running costs are minimal.
  • It saves products by ruling out trans-shipment losses or delays.

Three important networks of pipeline transportation in the country can be seen as:

  1. From oil fields in upper Assam to Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh), via Guwahati, Barauni and Allahabad.
    It has branches from Barauni to Haldia, via Rajbandh, Rajbandh to Maurigram and Guwahati to Siliguri.
  2. From Salaya in Gujarat to Jalandhar in Punjab, via Viramgam, Mathura, Delhi and Sonipat.
    It has branches to connect Koyali (near Vadodara, Gujarat) Chakshu to other areas.
  3. From Hazira in Gujarat which connects Jagdishpur in Uttar Pradesh, via Vijaipur in Madhya Pradesh.
    It has branches to Kota in Rajasthan, Shahjahanpur, Babrala and other places in Uttar Pradesh.

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

Example 2.
Which mode of transportation reduces trans-shipment losses and delays?
(a) Railways
(b) Roadways
(c) Pipeline
(d) Waterways
(c) Pipelines

Example 3.
Which one of the following states is not connected with the H.V.J. pipeline?
(a) Madhya Pradesh
(b) Maharashtra
(c) Gujarat
(d) Uttar Pradesh
(b) Maharashtra

Explanation: The HVJ pipeline runs from Hazira in Gujarat which connects Jagdishpur in Uttar Pradesh, via Vijaipur in Madhya Pradesh.

Example 4.
Read the source given below and answer the questions that follow:
Pipeline transport network is a new arrival on the transportation map of India. In the past, these were used to transport water to cities and industries. Now, these are used for transporting crude oil, petroleum products and natural gas from oil and natural gas fields to refineries, fertilizer factories and big thermal power plants. Solids can also be transported through a pipeline when converted into slurry. The far inland locations of refineries like Barauni, Mathura, Panipat and gas based fertilizer plants could be thought of only because of pipelines. Initial cost of laying pipelines is high but subsequent running costs are minimal. It rules out trans-shipment losses or delays. There are three important networks of pipeline transportation in the country.
(A) Which of the following cannot be transported through the pipelines?
(a) Crude Oil
(b) Jelly
(c) Petroleum Products and Natural Gas
(d) Fertiliser factories
(b) Jelly

(B) Which of the following pipeline has branches in Eastern Indian states?
(a) From Salaya in Gujarat to Jalandhar in Punjab
(b) Gas pipeline from Hazira in Gujarat connects Jagdishpur in Uttar Pradesh, via Vijaipur in Madhya Pradesh
(c) From Upper Assam to Kanpur
(d) Pipeline from Rajasthan to West Bengal
(c) From Upper Assam to Kanpur

Explanation: The pipeline begins from an oil field in upper Assam to Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh), via Guwahati, Barauni and Allahdbad. It has branches from Barauni to Haldia, via Rajbandh, Rajbandh to Maurigram and Guwahati to Siliguri

(C) Why were the Pipelines used in the past?
Pipelines were used to transfer water in the past.

(D) Assertion (A): Solids can also be transported through a pipeline.
Reason (R): The pipelines are accommodated with a net for transferring of solids.
(a) Both (A) and (R) are true and (R) is the correct explanation of (A).
(b) Both (A) and (R) are true but (R) is not the correct explanation of (A).
(c) (A) is correct but (R) is wrong.
(d) (A) is wrong but (R) is correct.
(c) (A) is correct but (R) is wrong.

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

India was one of the seafaring countries from ancient times. Indian seamen sailed and carried and spread Indian commerce and culture. Waterways are the cheapest means of transport. They can carry heavy and bulky goods. It is a fuel-efficient and environment friendly mode of transport.

India has inland navigation waterways of 14,500 km in length. Out of these only 5685 km are navigable by mechanised vessels.

These have been declared as the National Waterways by the Government.

  1. The Ganga river between Allahabad and Haldia (1620 km)-N.W. No.1
  2. The Brahmaputra river between Sadiya and Dhubri (891 km)-N.W. No.2
  3. The West-Coast Canal in Kerala (Kottapuram- Kollam, Udyogamandal and Champakara canals-205 km) – N.W. No.3
  4. Stretches of Godavari and Krishna rivers along with Kakinada Puducherry stretch of canals (1078 km) – N.W. No.4
  5. Stretches of river Brahmani along with Matai river, delta channels of Mahanadi and Brahmani rivers and East Coast Canal (588 km) – N.W. No.5

Some inland waterways which support transportation are Mandavi, Zuari and Cumberjua, Sunderbans, Barak and backwaters of Kerala.

Frequently Asked:
India’s trade with foreign countries is carried from the ports located along the coast. 95 per cent of the country’s trade volume (68 per cent in terms of value) is moved by sea.

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

Major Sea Ports:
With a long coastline of 7,516.6 km, India is dotted with 12 major and 200 notified minor ports. 95 per cent of the foreign trade is handled by these major ports.
1. Kandla in Kachchh was the first port to be developed after Independence to ease the volume of trade on the Mumbai port since Karachi port was lost to Pakistan post-partition. It handles exports and imports of highly productive granary and industrial belts stretching across the states of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Gujarat.

2. Mumbai has a spacious natural and well-sheltered harbour.

3. The Jawaharlal Nehru port was planned with a view to decongest the Mumbai port and serve as a hub port.

4. Mormagao port in Goa is the premier iron ore exporting port of the country and accounts for about fifty per cent of India’s iron ore export.

5. New Mangalore port, located in Karnataka caters to the export of iron ore concentrates from Kudremukh mines.

6. Kochchi is an extreme south-western port, located at the entrance of a lagoon with a natural harbour.

7. The extreme south-eastern port of Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu has a natural harbour and rich hinterland. A flourishing trade handling of cargoes with the neighbouring countries like Sri Lanka, Maldives, etc. and the coastal regions of India is handled from here.

8. Chennai is one of the oldest artificial ports of the country. It is ranked next to Mumbai in terms of the volume of trade and cargo.

9. Visakhapatnam is the deepest landlocked and well-protected port. This port was constructed for the trade of iron ore exports.

10. Paradwip port located in Odisha, specialises in the export of iron ore.

11. Kolkata is an inland riverine port. It caters to trade from the Ganga-Brahmaputra basin. It requires constant dredging of Hooghly.

12. Haldia port was developed as a subsidiary port, in order to relieve growing pressure on the Kolkata port.

Frequently Asked:
Kandla port is a tidal port. It is called the Deendayal port.

Example 5.
Which one of the following ports is the deepest land-locked and well-protected port along the east coast?
(a) Chennai
(b) Paradip
(c) Tuticorin
(d) Visakhapatnam
(d) Visakhapatnam

Air transport is the fastest, most comfortable and prestigious mode of transport.
It can provide access through very difficult terrains Like high mountains, dreary deserts, dense forests and also long oceanic stretches with great ease. The North-eastern states with big rivers, dissected relief, dense forests and frequent floods and international frontiers, etc., are well connected with the Indian mainland only because of air-transport.

The air transport was nationalised in 19S3. Air India provides domestic and international air services. Pawan Hans Helicopters Ltd. provides helicopter services to Oil and Natural Gas Corporation in its off-shore operations, to difficult terrains like north-eastern states and the interior parts of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand.

Air travel is informally subsidized in the north-eastern states to extend the services to even the poorest classes. It is otherwise an expensive form of transport.


Humans have used multiple forms of communication devices ever since they’ve lived. Long distance communication becomes easier in case of no movement of the communicator or receiver.
Personal communication and mass communication including television, radio, press, films, etc. are the major means of communication in the country.

The Indian postal network is the largest in the world.
The Indian Postal Network handles parcels as well as personally written communications.

  • Cards and envelopes are first-class mail and are airlifted between stations covering both land and air.
  • The second-class mail includes book packets, registered newspapers and periodicals. They are carried by surface mail, covering Land and water transport.

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

To facilitate quick delivery of mails in large towns and cities, six mail channels have been introduced recently. These are the Rajdhani Channel, Metro Channel, Green Channel, Business Channel, Bulk Mail Channel and Periodical Channel.

India has one of the largest telecom networks in Asia. About two-thirds of the villages in India have aLready been covered with Subscriber Trunk Dialing (STD) telephone facility. To transfer information from the grassroot level to the highest, the government has extended a twenty-four hours STD facility to every village in the country. All STD facilities in India have a common rate. This could be done by integrating the development in space technology with communication technology.

Mass Communication:
Mass communication is the source of entertainment and awareness for people about national programmes and policies. It includes radio, television, newspapers, magazines, books and films. ALl India Radio (Akashwani) broadcasts a variety of programmes in national, regional and local Languages for a cross section of people of Indian society.

Doordarshan, the national television channel of India, is one of the largest terrestrial networks in the world. It broadcasts a variety of programmes from entertainment, educational to sports, etc. for people of different age groups. Digital India is an umbrella programme to prepare India for a knowledge based transformation.

The focus of Digital India Programme is on being transformative to realise – IT (Indian Talent) + IT (Information Technology)=IT (India Tomorrow) and is on making technology central to enabling change.

India publishes a large number of newspapers and periodicals with varied periodicity annually.

Newspapers are published in 100 different languages and dialects. The largest number of newspapers published in the country are in Hindi, followed by English and Urdu.

India produces the largest number of feature films in the world annually. It produces short films, video feature films and short films. The Central Board of Film Certification is the authority to certify both Indian and foreign films.

International Trade

The exchange of goods and services among people, states and countries are termed as trade. Trade exchanges take place in the markets.

Example 6.
What is meant by trade? What is the difference between international and local trade?

  • International Trade is the trade between two or more countries. International Trade can be facilitated through sea, air or land routes.
  • Local trade is carried in cities, towns and villages. State-level trade is carried between two or more states.

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

The advancement of international trade of a country is an index to its economic prosperity; the economic barometer for a country.

Frequently Asked:
Resources are space-bound and countries can survive without international trade. Export and import are the components of trade. The Balance of trade of a country is the difference between its export and import.

When the value of export exceeds the value of imports, it is called a favourable balance of trade. On the contrary, if the value of imports exceeds the value of exports, it is termed as an unfavourable balance of trade. India has trade relations with all the major trading blocs and most countries of the world. India exports items which include gems and jewellery, chemicals and related products, agriculture and allied products, etc.

India imports petroleum crude and products, gems and jewellery, chemicals and related products, base metals, electronic items, machinery, agriculture and allied products.

India has emerged as a software giant at the international level. India earns huge foreign exchange through the export of information technology.

Tourism As A Trade

Tourism has grown substantially over the last three decades in India. About 15 million people are currently engaged in the industry. Tourism promotes national integration and supports local handicrafts and cultural pursuits. It helps in the development of an international understanding about Indian culture and heritage.

Foreign tourists visit India for heritage tourism, eco tourism, adventure tourism, cultural tourism, medical tourism and business tourism.

India has a vast potential in the tourism industry waiting to be tapped. Industrialists and the government are making efforts to make tourism a promising industry.

→ First-Class Mail: Mail that is airlifted between stations.

→ Second-Class Mail: Mai that is carried by surface covering Land and water transport.

NCERT Class 10 Geography Chapter 7 Notes Lifelines of National Economy

→ Balance of Trade: The difference between Exports and Imports

→ Socio-Cultural Plurality: Cultural pluralism is a term used when smaller groups within a larger society maintain their unique cultural identities.

→ Aggravating: To make worse or more troublesome

→ Traverse: To move or travel through an area

→ Terrain: A piece of ground

→ Slurry: A slurry is a mixture of solids denser than water suspended in liquid.

→ Premier: Primary

→ Periodical: A paper, publication

Class 10 Social Science Notes