urban landscapes

Rabi Rashmi Roy:

Urbanisation in India

Cuttack 1
Cuttack 2
Cuttack 3

rabi rashmi roy


(C) 2012, R Roy


(C) 2012, R Roy


(C) 2012, R Roy


(C) 2012, R Roy



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At present, India is largely a rural country as 65-70 % of the population lives in villages. Projected data, based on the rate of rural-urban exodus reveals India is expected to be an urban majority country by 2040 when 65% of the population will live in urban areas.

Conventional thinking about the future of India’s urbanization focuses on megacities like Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata. Patterns of growth, however, suggest that most of India’s urbanization will take place in smaller cities and towns with population between half a million to one million.

On this basis, my project starts with the city of Cuttack – a city situated 400 kilometers South-West of Kolkata with a population of one million.

All over India, there are 48 urban agglomerations like Cuttack. My plan is to photograph as many of these cities as possible during the next 20 years.

As far as this group of cities is concerned, there is - lack of consistent urban development policy, faulty and improper urban planning, poor implementation and regulation overload.

Visible results are – haphazard and dense arrangement of dwelling units, inefficient sewage system, encroached pavements, congested city roads, disorganized and chaotic power grids and cables.

Globalization and economic liberalization are the agents fuelling urbanization in India. As such, signage/advertisements are often included in my compositions. Using a telephoto lens flattens the picture plane and exaggerates the density of structures.

R R Roy
Aug 2012