Urbanization of India
This Doc conatins an analysed case study regarding urbanization in India.
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(The Urban Century) TREND 4 : THE URBAN CENTURY The economic shift from the North Atlantic to the Pacific and Indian Oceans is not the only fundamental change ahead. For the first time in human history, most of the world’s population will live in urban centers rather than villages. From the origin of the species through the birth of agriculture and right upto 2007, most of the world’s people have been residents of rural communities rather than towns and cities. Cities arose with the end of the last ice age and the rise of agriculture some ten thousand years ago. The essence of city life is a non-agricultural community that obtains most of its food by trading with the countryside, or that extracts food from the countryside in a coercive manner (taxation, slaveholding, tribute, or the like). When agricultural productivity is low- so that the typical farm family basically feeds itself, with only a small surplus to trade with urban dwellers - most of the population must be engaged in food production in order to subsist. It is only when agricultural productivity is very high – so that a farm family can feed many urban dwellers – that a significant share of the population can reside in urban areas and be engaged in manufacturing and services sector of the economy. In the United States, with its enormous output per farmer (due both to high productivity per land and large area per farm), farm families constitute just 1 percent of the population and are able to feed the other 99 percent. In 2008, the historic, and presumably irreversible, halfway mark was reached when half the world was urban and half rural. The rising rates of urbanization can have countless benefits for the world. From the earliest days of civilization, cities have been the hub for scientific and technological advancement due to specialization and division of labor. Yet, urban life raises its own host of challenges. Rural populations migrate into urban areas not because of rising farm productivity or the lure of urban jobs but out of desperation and hunger in the countryside. Urban slums then complement rural desperation. Hunger itself is urbanized, and young, unemployed men on the prowl may create urban settings of violence and insecurity. A rural crisis can thereby become an urban nightmare. The rising population of large cities creates pollutants that fail to disperse into water and air naturally. Cities have long been host to infectious diseases that depend on large populations of susceptible individuals to sustain the long-term transmission of the disease. Moreover, the rising populations of large cities will be vulnerable to other natural hazards, including floods, landslides, and earthquakes. This is especially the case because the world’s cities have been heavily concentrated along the coastlines to take advantage of access to global trade, fisheries, and the amenities of coastal life. And if these worries are not enough, we are discovering that the modern style of urban(and suburban) living has itself become an unanticipated health hazard. Today’s urban citizens lead a sedentary lifestyle shaped by the automobile and the television set; ear more and eat more unhealthy foods than ever before. Q1 : How important has urbanization been in the Indian context? What has been the change in population in the major metropolitan cities in India in the last 15 years? Q2 : Cite some examples of the stand taken by various political parties wrt migration of people from one state of our country to another? Q3: Keeping in mind the problems attributed to urbanization as stated by the author, what do you think should be means to address them? Q1 : How important has urbanization been in the Indian context? What has been the change in population in the major metropolitan cities in India in the last 15 years? Answer: Urbanization in the Indian context India has long been experiencing population and demographic changes after its independence, and an important process associated with it is the urbanization and urban population growth. Urban population has risen from about 30 million in 1901 to 300 million by 2001 in India and the level of urbanization has steadily grown from less than 11 per cent of total population to about 28 per cent during this period. The number of urban areas has also grown from less than 2000 to about 4,500 by 2001 but list and number are inconsistent over time (Kundu 2006). There is an increasing tendency towards “metropolitanization” of Indian cities in the recent past. The number of metropolitan cities has (cities with more than 10 million population, which are also referred to as mega cities) increased from 4 to 7 and the number of metros (cities with population more than 1 million) has increased from 23 to 35 during 1991-2001 (Census 2001). Positive aspects of Urbanization for India 1. Urbanization led to increased recognition of India on the Global Map. Increased economical growth of the country. Increased number of job opportunities in the country. Development of new and world class infrastructure. The standard of living in the country metropolitans increased. People started becoming more aware about the latest trends in the market. Literacy Level among people increased. New venues in business developed. Various corporate sectors developed in top cities of India like Mumbai, Bangaluru, Hydrabad, etc. 10. Reclassification of area. Negative aspects of Urbanization for India 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 1. Increased crowding of people in the cities. 2. Increased problem of housing, slums, transport, water supply and sanitation, water pollution and air pollution,inadequate provision for social infrastructure ( school, hospital, etc ). 3. Increased urban poverty. 4. Decreased rural growth and increased pressure on agricultural resources. 5. Illiterate, low- skill or no-skill migrants from rural areas were absorbed in poor low grade urban informal sector at a very low wage rate and urban informal sector became in-efficient and unproductive. The change in population in the major metropolitan cities in India in the last 15 years can be shown by the following table: Q2 : Site some examples of the stand taken by various political parties wrt migration of people from one state of our country to another? Answers: One of the most popular example of such event is that of Raj Thakrey imposing ban on migrants from the Northern states. He came out with Anti- North Indians campaign which took a violent picture later on. Various festivals celebrated by north Indians were banned and even didn’t allow them to migrate to Mumbai or Maharashtra for any kind of job. Such kind of activity definitely causes reduction in the urban growth and economical development of the country. Such an event in a democratic country like India, creates a very disappointing picture in this globalized world. The other example can be of the southern states. The government actively participqated in the growth of their respective states by developing cities like Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Chennai,etc. they came up with world class technology and infrastructure and welcomed people from different parts of the country to develop these urban hubs. The government of Gujarat is also in the same way encouraging people from different parts of the country to undergo urbanization. Hence political parties alongwith encouraging migration of people, from one state to another, also keep a check that they donot get short of resources and people of that region don’t loose their identity. Q3: Keeping in mind the problems attributed to urbanization as stated by the author, what do you think should be means to address them? Answer: The various means I think to be addressed towards the problems attributed to Urbanization are: 1. Increase basic facilities in the rural areas like basic infrastructure (schools, hospitals, etc.) 2. Encourage rural people to undertake farming as their primary job and must make them understand its importance to reduce pressure in agricultural sector. 3. Government must keep a check on the incoming migrants from rural area which create unnecessary crowding in the cities. 4. The desperation and fascination to stay in urban areas should be reduced by providing them knowledge of the difficulties faced in the urban areas by poor people/ migrants. 5. More the people in urban area, more will be the consumption of various resources, more of pollution, health hazards, etc. 6. There should be a check on the population of urban cities because they also hamper the natural environment by creating unnecessary pressure which in the end leads to various natural calamities. 7. Increased urbanization will lead to extinction of the rural culture and art, hence government should work on it and conserve it by educating the rural community.