History / Background

The Town & Country Planning Deptt. was created by the Government Vide G.O.No.10201_R/XII C_D_579/48 dated November 30,1948, which laid down certain functions for the department. In the beginning, the role of the department was purely advisory in nature. The awareness regarding the planned development of urban and rural areas and realisation of the problem of haphazard growth and over-crowding in cities and lack of community facilities. Higher density and slum areas on the part of the Government was instrumental in increasing the scope of work of this department from advisory body to an effective organisation contributing betterment of people. In the initial stages it had its concern with more preparation of layouts or street planning or designing of buildings or sometimes beautification of the environments but later it was realised that the scope of the Town & Country Planning was much wider as it involved practically every kind of development activity in urban and rural areas.

Before proceeding to prescribe definite norms of work it may be useful to explain the term Town and Country Planning, its  scope, objectives and various facets and stages of planning function etc. so that the norms of work for this organisation which is of a specialised character are understood in the right perspective. An attempt has therefore been made in the following paragraphs to present the above information which is largely based upon the valuable experience gained by the department during several years of its working and the recommendations made from time to time by various conferences, seminars organised by the Government of India or Institute of Town Planning (India) or other institutions related to the field.

Need for Town & Country Planning

The Town & Country Planning as a discipline and profession is of recent origin in our country, and its development may be traced in the process of urbanisation which is an extremely new phenomenon in human history so recent that its rapid growth and full potentialities are not yet thoroughly understood or realised. A sold comprehension of the great transformation now taking place in human society requires that the process of urbanisation, an essential part of transformation, be thoroughly understood especially since urbanisation is now occurring on as scale and in a manner never before experienced. The concentration of greater and greater proportions of people in urban aggregations is a process so fundamental that it necessarily has close connections with the whole economic and social order. Therefore to focus and demographic aspects of human spatial distribution is not to manifest a narrow interest but rather to pursue a sharply defined and highly important and ramified interest. The implications of the continuing growth of urbanisation in this context, therefore, deserve careful considerations. This urban growth has far reaching consequence by bringing about change in the social and economic fabric of society creating multi-farious problems, for instance settlements of enormous number of people who have migrated to cities. Traffic congestion, air pollution, agricultural retreat, water shortage and waste of resources etc. This process of urbanisation is so massive and so intimately linked up with the economic development of the state that it tends to grow unabated. Thus we require suitable tools to solve these problem without eliminating the basic cause which is urbanisation itself. The Town Planning provide these in the hands of the Government to devise suitable and effective measures in proper planning of towns and villages to provide for the present and projected population all sorts of facilities for a comfortable living and a good physical and human environment conducive to healthy and satisfying community life.

In a welfare society the responsibilities of the Government in respect of providing community facilities for a socially richer life are increased and the work of the Town Planners become more significant in the context of a democratic and socialistic pattern of society. The town or village is a living organism and social phenomenon which is the form and symbol of an integrated social relationship. The people constitute the towns and villages and they are built for the people to satisfy their materialistic, social, cultural and spiritual needs which should, therefore, serve life and their validity must be measured in terms of a good life and living.