The Rubber Board is a statutory body constituted by the Government of India, controlled by the Rubber Act 1947, for the overall development of the rubber industry in the country. Commercial cultivation of natural rubber was launched in India by the British, although the experimental efforts to grow rubber on a commercial scale in India were started as early as 1873 at the Botanical Gardens, Calcutta.
The first commercial Hevea plantations in India were set up at Thattekadu in 1902. The need for rubber production in India from strategic and security reasons had been realized by the government during the Second World War period. The rubber harvester in India was encouraged to produce the maximum rubber required for the use during the war.
After the war, there were increasing demands from the growers for setting up a permanent organization to look after the interests of the industry. Thereupon the government established an ad-hoc committee in 1945 to study the situation and to make an appropriate recommendation. On the recommendation of this ad-hoc committee, the government passed the Rubber (Production and Marketing) Act, 1947, on 18th April 1947, and the “Indian Rubber Board” was constituted forthwith.
The Rubber Production and Marketing (Amendment) Act, 1954, amended the name of the Board as “The Rubber Board”.
The objectives of the Board as defined under the Act are:
- To encourage by such measures as it thinks fit the development of the rubber industry.
- Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing provision the steps referred to therein may provide for:
- undertaking, helping or encouraging scientific, technological or economic research.
- training students in enhanced methods of planting, cultivation, manuring, and spraying.
- the flow of technical advice to rubber growers
- enhancing the marketing of rubber.
- the stock of statistics from owners of estates, dealers and manufacturers.
- safegaurding better working conditions and the provision and improvement of amenities and incentives to workers.
- carrying out any other duties which may be implied with the Board as per rules made under this Act.
- to guide the Central Government on all matters relating to the development of the rubber industry, covering the import and export of rubber.
- to guide the Central Government with regard to participation in any international conference or scheme concerned to rubber.
- to posit to the Central Government and such other authorities as may be prescribed, half-yearly reports on its activities and the working of this Act, and
- to make and furnish such other reports relating to the rubber industry as may be required by the Central Government from time to time.
The Rubber Board works under the Ministry of Commerce & Industry of the Government of India. The Board has a Chairman appointed by the Central Government. He is the chief executive officer undertaken for the proper functioning of the Board and implementation of its decisions and discharge of its duties under the Rubber Act.