In this Hindustan Times article, Associate Kadambari Shah and Senior Analyst Harshita Agrawal write about how undercounting urban areas leads to inadequate service delivery and lowers quality of life. Excerpts:
"Rural Local Bodies (RLBs) and Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) were designed to cater to the varying governance needs of urban and rural areas. The 73rd and 74th amendments to the Constitution identify differences in the powers and functions of these bodies. For instance, urban areas require building codes and firefighting services to ensure safety and development in dense conditions, while rural areas are not mandated to create master plans or establish fire stations. But urbanisation has pushed cities beyond boundaries, rapidly populating the peripheries. This means that some areas that are rural on paper may have actually become urban based on widely employed alternate measures but still being governed by RLBs rather than ULBs. These dense urban peripheries demand a different set of public goods and services than dispersed rural areas, but their administrative categories don’t allow for these advantages. The resulting misclassification leads to disparate governance outcomes, particularly in public service delivery..."
Read the whole article here.