Delhi - India's Capital: A City of Contradictions

Categories: CityIndiaUrbanization

CHAPTER 1INTRODUCTIONABSTRACT:o Delhi, an eternal capital city of modern India, inheres many contradictions. The existence of villages, known in policy and planning circles as urban villages', within the sprawling metropolis is just one of them. The so called urban villages' constitute a paradox for a variety of reasons. o In the Delhi Master plan, urban villages were designated as primarily residential areas to protect villagers' rights to remain in their villages. While license for some commercial activities was reserved for convenience shops and offices to cover local needs, this provision was not intended to extend to outside investment.

However, since these spaces received little attention from authorities and villagers were forced to turn to rental income after the loss of their farming land, large numbers of external commercial and manufacturing activities entered into urban village localities. The villages of old, now absorbed into cities, were on the fringes of India urbanizing. They are lagging behind compared to other parts of the cities in terms of basic services and urban infrastructure.

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o The urban development process should address specific issues and concerns of these villages regardless of need and scope of planning for the city as a whole. This would make the transition from rural status affair and inclusive urban status to those before the villagers. With the advance of urbanization, the old villages are becoming suburbs of cities or towns, becoming consequently irreversibly. These villages, which are now neighborhoods in cities or towns, are located on the margins of an India that is urbanizing.

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Therefore, they are lagging behind in terms of being equipped with basic urban services and infrastructure compared to other urban neighborhoods. In this sense, the processes of urban development should address the issues and the specific concerns of these villages, regardless of the needs and scope of city planning in general. To take such measures, the transition from a rural to an urban situation would be more just and inclusive for those who inhabit that once were villages. o The unparalleled growth of Delhi has led to a loss of identity of urban villages and is denied by the city as unwanted'. Thus, the study will be concerned with exploring this unplanned growth of these villages in Delhi, basically dealing with the planning issues regarding the aforementioned. HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE:o Delhi exists as capital site of India, a historic power centre. According to the urban sociologists and historians (Mumford, 1966) all cities are living entities, which go through a life-cycle as the birth, growth, consolidation, expansion, decline, and quite often some kind of end, or state of decay, unless they are turned-around and revived by combined human efforts. Unfortunately, modern planning in India has never considered the city as a cultural artifact. Neither has it come to term with the rapid rate of transformation and change that is occurring within our historic areas. An understanding of transformation and change is essential to conservation because it has to be integrated into the planning and conservation process. Due to fast urban sprawls and land use change, most of the cultural heritage sites are almost endangered by such changes in Delhi. The land environment is under stress due to the fast pace of urbanization. o The villages connect Delhi to its distant and near pasts and provide refuge to many Delhiets that gentrified Delhi cold-shoulders, single women and Northeasterners, for instance. And now we begin to see the transformation of some of these villages into cosmopolitan hubs, with an interesting cultural mix, or even (as in the case of Shahpur Jat or Hauz Khas Village) into posh commercial areas. Urban heritage has a significant role in influencing social organization, equity and environmental sustainability in Indian cities, and therefore, must play a central role in urban planning approaches in India.RATIONAL STUDYSCOPE:o The Urban Village plays a very important role in the functioning of the city thereby providing the accommodations to the people of Delhi as well as migrating people. The density of the urban village is much higher than the DDA colonies and gradually increasing. Urban villages covered the 38 % land of the Delhi City but provide the accommodation to more than 60% of people. But due to all of this the living conditions of these areas become very badly infected. We can compare it with the slums. And no govt. body is able to provide the basic amenities and infrastructure to these people. So the scope of this research is the actual living condition of the urban villages. So that it can develop in the planned manner.o Starting commercial/ industrial establishments is one major development.One of the ways by which an urban village plays an important role in city is by starting commercial or industrial establishments to cater to the surrounding areas. The commercial activity in an urban village is a widespread phenomenon and most evident. Almost all the urban villages undergo commercialization to some extent. It is an important phenomenon in urban villages as it helps to revitalize village economy and makes these settlements viable in the city. Through commercial establishments, urban villages talk to the city by catering to its needs and bringing people from the surrounding areas to these settlements. The commercial establishments in urban villages may serves the local inhabitants only, people from surrounding areas, or maybe even the city whole. They not only serve the local population, there is interaction between the urban village and the city through commercial establishments. They supplement the planned commercial developments around and serve to meet service and commercials requirements of the city. They might even become fully fledged markets for specialized products. Such commercial developments in urban villages become important determents of their urban form. Thus, the scope of the study will be confined to commercial activity and rental accommodations in urban villages.RELEVANCE:o The urban village is a rapidly transforming unit as pressure of urbanization has led to rapid reproduction of a number of unwanted activities within the settlement in the absence of sufficient infrastructural and even moral support. This has resulted in environmental degradation and disorder. As a result, the urbanized villages of Delhi present a picture of distress: a struggle to find a new identity and stability in their changed environment. o These settlements caught between a rural and an urban lifestyle need special attention to harness their resources, manpower and to channelize their growth in directions which would be profitable for the whole city. While the impact of the city on urban villages has been studied by various institutions and individuals, their response to this impact has not been considered important enough. Hence it has been a one-way process where only what the city on urban villages has done to the villages is considered important but response of these settlements to this impact, its extent and nature can help to establish the role of the urban village in the city. Though the urban villages form an important part of the city, their urban form and spatial characteristics have often been neglected in practice as well as in the various studies that have been conducted. The growth pressure of the city and growth within these settlements has shaped the physical environment of these villages in a characteristic's manner. The study shall seek to bring out the urban form and spatial characteristics of urban villages, to understand the role of urban villages and to understand role of internal and external factors responsible.AIM o This study attempts to explore the unplanned growth of URBAN VILLAGES in the city of Delhi. It also includes the current living standards and quality of life in an urban village.OBJECTIVESo To study the effects of unplanned growth in urban villageso To analyze the scope of the actual living conditions/ quality of life of these villageso To examine the land use activity in these villageso To give strategic suggestions/ recommendations/ developmentsHYPOTHESISo Unplanned growth in urban villages is no different from slumsLIMITATIONSo Due to restricted time and resources, research is focused only on Indian Urban Villages.o Due to travel constraints, the research is limited to Delhi only.METHODOLOGY:o Study Master Plan transformations.o Descriptive approaches " the study of urban villages of Delhi through books and web research. o Primary and Secondary Case Studies shall be conducted to analyze the significance of urban villages. o Comparative study of Case Studies of Delhi o Interviews and Surveyso Inferences drawn from the studyo Conclusiono Newspaper reports and other interventions CASE STUDIES:Case Studies are a crucial form of qualitative and quantitative analysis for any research wok. Both primary and secondary case studies were carried out of the following urban villages of Delhi-o Case Study 1 " Hauz Khas Village o Case Study 2 - Katwaria Saraio Case Study 3 " Shahpur Jato Case Study 4 " Khirki Village

Updated: May 03, 2023
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Delhi - India's Capital: A City of Contradictions. (2019, Aug 20). Retrieved from

Delhi - India's Capital: A City of Contradictions essay
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