India is all set to cross the $2 trillion GDP mark and the most vital contributor to this development is the lower middle income group. It is an very interesting to note that the economic output of the state of Maharashtra at the present time is what it was the economic output of the whole county during the early 1990’s, when the economic reforms as the new economic policy was just launched in the year 1991. The statistics suggests that Chennai is the beat metro and that Vadodhara is the fastest emerging city. The growth is very much visible in the survey in most of the Indian cities today and yet the cities in India remain unrecognized, underdeveloped and underinvested.
Here the India today ranking of India’s best cities tries to highlight this point and hopes to reverse it. The point is that India has spent nearly two decades of enjoying a 5 percent and above growth but the people is still trapped under the unnecessary dichotomy. Here we find two India one we may call “Bharat” which is still struggling to gain proper sanitation, power supply into the homes, proper connectivity, to the odd 830 million people dwelling in the 640,000 villages and the other India with a population of an odd 400 million resides in the countryside in the 8,000 cities who have moved above the basic things for the better life and a social mobility of created by the educated youth.
What is described above is an incomplete picture as the divide created by the political interests, the historical differences and the differences of public expenditures in the urban and the rural areas is and artificial one. the two India that we are talking about are intimately connected to each other. In the states of Punjab, western Uttar Pradesh and areas of Krishna and Godavari delta the growth of the cities and the towns is a result of the rural and the agricultural prosperity. Again in the states of Kerala and Goa the towns and the villages have developed with common phenomena of “rurban” development and the difference can hardly be seen. The rapidly urbanizing states like Gujarat and Tamil Nadu and the development around the metros is a sign today that the political calculus needs to include the changes that are seen in the changing occupations, lifestyle and the aspirations of the people belonging to the peri-urban spectrum.
it is a fact that India is different from other big countries and including contemporary China where we have over a half million people living in the villages. Majority of Indians will continue to dwell in the villages and this fact is surely not going to change for the next few decades. But the question to be noted here is that why we privilege our rural demographics above our urban demographics that are the main creator of income.
The answer to this lies in the pre-independence thought of our free India which still governs our though and the culture. The lines of Mahatma Gandhi beat express the though- “India lives in its seven Lakh villages not in its towns... We are inheritors of a rural civilization... To uproot it and substitute it for an urban civilization seems to me to be impossibility". Post independence the Indian cities grew up own their own without the link to the rural parts as sites of colonial and capitalists exploitation which was totally contrary to the path followed for modernization by the soviet states, the Latin American and even of some of the south and South East Asian economic giants.