During British rule in India there was no technological development and the Government policy was to discourage even indigenous skills in various crafts. As a result, whatever industries came up after the first World War were totally dependent on British technology and machines for manufacture. Even the process requirements for such manufacturing industries were supplied from Britain and we had to be totally dependent on such supplies all the time.
WWII - The Need for indigenous Safety Fuse
During the second World War the indigenous industries found themselves severely handicapped because of their heavily depending on the imported process requirements. One glaring example was a comparatively small item such as safety fuse, which was essential for carrying out the blasting in collieries and other mining industries all over India. Supplies from Britain were irregular due to severe damage to their industrial units, which was further accentuated due to heavy losses in shipping. The consequent scarcity of even a minor item like safety fuse put the entire mining operations in collieries and others at a standstill and the owners of such industries were at a loss to find an alternative or a substitute.
1944 – The Birth
Sir Manekji Dadabhoy, Managing Director of Ballarpur Collieries Limited, when confronted with the dismal prospect of closing the mining operations in his group of collieries, asked Mr. S. Sanyal, his Chief Engineer, to find a substitute for the purpose and, if possible, develop the manufacture of indigenous safety fuse to avert total closure. Mr. Sanyal, first improvised shot firing by electricity to keep up the essential production of coal and, in the meantime, set himself to the task of developing manufacture of indigenous safety fuse. Experiments and trials continued day in and day out and a model safety fuse machine was designed with the little information then available within a short space of a month. However, many shortcomings were experienced and modifications and alterations had to be done to overcome such problems.
Growth of an Indigenous Enterprise
Mr. Sanyal’s enthusiasm to manufacture the safety fuse knew no bounds and with the cooperation of his friends, a small factory was set up to manufacture the safety fuse in the year 1944. That was just the beginning of an indigenous enterprise, which called for more and more ingenuity to solve the various problems encountered in industrial production and Mr. Sanyal had to design several machines for various unit operations of the process. Today, more than eighteen diverse types of machines designed and indigenously fabricated in their own workshop are operating in Commercial Explosives (India) Private Limited.
1973 – Commercial Explosives
Earlier a partnership firm, the company was incorporated as an unlisted Limited company under the Companies Act 1956, under the name “SANYAL HASONJEE EXPLOSIVES LIMITED” on 19th September 1967. On 5th March 1973, the name of the company was changed to “COMMERCIAL EXPLOSIVES (INDIA) LIMITED” and on 3rd June 2009, the company was converted into a private limited company.