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Is Delhi prepared?

Urbanization of Delhi
  1. Urbanisation has increased rapidly since 1911 when Delhi became the capital of the country. The pace was accelerated during 1941-51 when the country was partitioned and refugees started settling in Delhi. 90% of the population was living in urban areas by 1991, compared to 57.5% in 1911.
  2. With rapid urbanisation , the rural area is shrinking; it has fallen from 1157.52 sq km in 1961 to 782.77 sq km in 1991. The population density was 12361 persons per sq km in urban areas in 1991 and 1190 persons per sq km in rural areas.
  3. Rapid urbanisation has led to one distinctive feature in Delhi- different types of settlements. The types of settlements in Delhi are categorised in terms of civic infrastructure, types of houses, authorised vs. unauthorised settlement etc. The types of settlements are listed below:-

    • Jhuggis and jhoparis resettlement colonies
    • Slum resettlement colonies
    • Refugee resettlement colonies
    • Approved/planned colonies
    • Unauthorised-regularised colonies
    • Urbanised colonies
    • Urbanised villages
    • Jhuggis and jhoparis clusters
    • Notified slum areas / Walled City
    • Rural villages

  4. In Delhi, occupational patterns as well as the standards of living vary by types of habitat. According to the 1991 census, 79.48% of households have electricity connections and 63.38% of households have toilet facilities. About 60% of the households have both electricity and toilet facilities,75.7% have piped water supply (individual plus sharing) while 20% depend on hand-plumps/tube-wells. 46.5% use LPG as domestic fuel while 42% of the households use kerosene as fuel. (Economic Survey of Delhi 1999-2000)
Master Plan for Delhi
The First Master Plan (FMP) for Delhi, 1961-81, was published by DDA in 1962. The Second Master Plan(SMP) for Delhi 1981-2001, was published by DDA in 1990. As per FMP, 11.7% of the total area of Delhi (17287.45 hectares) was urbanized in 1958-59, with a population of 20 lakhs. FMP envisaged development of urnbanisable area of 44,777 hectares by 1981, catering to a population of 46 lakhs. This was subsequently increased to 48,777 hectares-40000 hectares were added for development of Patparganj, Satita Vihar and Vasant Kunj. The Second Master Plan envisaged acquisition of 20,000 hectares, for planned development by 2001.

Delhi being the capital city of the nation, is the focal point of its socio-economic and political life. There are functions; political, cultural, and administrative peculiar to a capital which attract people. Besides this, it has also developed as a center of international commerce, banking and insurance institutions and provides ample opportunities to the people for international commercial dealings.

It has been strongly argued at various forums that whereas there is a reasonable amount of uniformity in tax and tariff rates among the neighboring states, the effective rates of tax and tariff are substantially lower in Delhi. These differentials in tax rates with added advantage of better social and physical infrastructure have greatly influenced decision-making regarding location of industry and trade. The articles where the margin of profit is low and transportation costs are not so high, such variations result in attracting buyers from far-off places.

The phenomenal surge of Delhi's physical growth and the under-development of its surrounding areas, is primarily a problem of relationship rather than a problem of scarcity. For example, the total journey time from Delhi to the farthest towns in the region is so short that no big center of transportation and trading activities have developed in the outer ring of the National Capital Region(NCR). The entire region outside the Delhi Metropolitan Area is thus registering a relatively slow growth rate leading to lopsided development of the region characterized by the 'Metropolis-Satellite' syndrome, where part of the economic surplus of the periphery is extracted by the core and whatever development takes place in the periphery, mostly reflects the expanding needs of the core. Under this phenomenon, the region, rather than adding or accelerating its growth went on supporting the growth prosperity of Delhi whereby setting an uneven system tied up in a chain of 'Center-periphery' relationship. This relationship helped to raise the income levels in Delhi. Delhi with per capita income of Rs.19,779 at current prices (1995-96), as compared to all India per capita income of Rs.9,321, has the distinction of having highest per capita income in the country. Thus, ample job opportunities coupled with higher wages and earnings provide enough opportunities for the people migrate to Delhi.

It is evident that presently, growth has been totally due to:
  1. Material growth of city.
  2. Metro cities serve as centres for international trade and development providing facilities and know-how necessary for these international transfers of goods and services.
  3. Provides cost and efficiency advantage to business activities.
  4. Provides for a large market.
  5. Provides for infrastructure like international airport, telecommunications, health and education facilities.
  6. Politically a sound and physically well-planned seat of power.
  7. Capital inflows due to opening of international trade.

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