Urbanisation is the physical growth of urban areas as a result of global change. Urbanisation is also defined as the movement of people from rural to urban areas with population growth equating to urban migration. Urbanisation is closely linked to modernisation and industrialisation. Urban growth takes place as more and more people leave villages and farms to live in cities.
Urbanisation is a welcome phenomenon of change and transformation. As in most countries, India’s towns and cities make a major contribution to the country’s economy. Cities and towns are centers of agglomeration for development of economies, investments, technology, innovation, economic growth and tertiary jobs. Their contribution to the GDP is immense. With less than 1/3rd of India’s people living in urban areas, its cities generate over 2/3rd of the country’s GDP and account for 90 percent of government revenues.
As India’s cities expand, India’s economic makeup will also change. In 1995, India’s GDP was split almost evenly between its urban and rural economies. In 2008, urban GDP accounted for 58 percent of overall GDP. By 2030, under base-case economic projections made by Mc Kinsey Global Institute (MGI) estimates urbanisation will spread across India, impacting almost every state. For the first time in India’s history, the nation will have five large states (Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Punjab) with more of their population living in cities than in villages and urban India will generate nearly 70 percent of India’s GDP and drive a near fourfold increase in per capita.
However, urbanisation may well lead to chaos and socio-economic disorders and deprivations if it is not channelled and regulated in a proper direction. In the context of India’s urbanisation and economic development several doubts seem to have arisen. Important questions that come to mind are:
Have economic growth and