We proudly boast that India lives in villages, however, keeping in mind the present scenario, if I say that India lives in cities, it would not be an exaggeration. The unceasing migration from the Indian villages to cities like-Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkatta is escalating the problems, not only for the villages but also for the metros.
You would be surprised, as you know that Mumbai alone receives 1,500 newcomers everyday, already packed with more than 17 million people with a population density of around 29,000 people per square kilometer.
Further stats are more horrifying and capable enough to assess the future of Indian metros. UNESCO’s recent study on Indian cities reveals that by 2015 three of the world’s 12 largest cities will be in India. Fifteen years back, India had 23 cities with one million or more people and ten years later, it had 35. Around 28 percent population (census: 2001) of India dwells in cities in which 31 percent of the urban population lives below the poverty line. The rapid migration has transformed the cities into the hubs of troubles – traffic jams, electricity cuts, paucity of drinking water…alas, the tale of woes is too long. In short, I’d say that ultimately our cities are steadily heading towards their last stage if we don’t re-examine our policies.
Cities are the biggest employment provider in India and if we go to the annals, we find that our policy makers have nourished a fancy to promote only Indian metros and the tendency is still on the way. By the virtue of this, India witnessed an unequal development over the last 15 years. Here, we can’t criticize the people who are frequently moving their ways to cities for there bread and butter, they don’t have any better alternative.
The need of the hour is to restructure the infrastructure build-up. More satellite cities should be developed at the environs of metros and foreign and domestic investors should be encouraged to invest in less populated areas too. For this, the government must ensure the basic infrastructure for industrialists. Agriculture reforms can also deviate the influx of people from cities.