Provisions of Town Planning Act

To manage the transformation of India’s cities and towns and effectively manage new growth requires effective urban planning protocols, processes and institutions underpinned by effective legislation. To effectively manage the new growth, it is essentially means that the irregular landholdings and plots will have to be given regular shapes they must be ordered each plot must be given access; infrastructure services such as water supply and drainage must be provided; land must be appropriated for providing roads, parks, social amenities, and low income housing, development controls must be prescribed to result in a good quality built form and levy development or betterment charges to offset the cost of developing the physical and social infrastructure. 

Town Planning Act

India Due to the rapid industrial growth coupled with increasing level of urbanization during mid-century, the recognition of the need for viewing urban development as one whole integrated development in which each sector has a definite role to play and not in unrelated manner, was felt by the town planners. Town Planning Law is not new in India. The history of town planning legislation in India dates back to early part of the 20th century when the erstwhile Bombay Presidency took the lead in enacting the first town planning legislation in the country viz. The Bombay Town Planning Act, 1915 which came into force on 6th March, 1915. 
This Act was then followed by other provinces later on. The Bombay act of 1915 mainly provided for; 
  • The preparation of Town Planning Schemes (TPS) for areas in course of development within the jurisdiction of local authority 
  • The recovery by planning authority of betterment contribution from the owners of benefited lands. 
It was observed that T.P. schemes prepared under the 1915 act resulted in the piecemeal planning having no relation with the adjoining areas. Thus, to have a planned development of every square inch of the land within the municipal limits the need for another. 
Statutory process of master plan formulation in India was inspired by the erstwhile comprehensive planning system envisaged under the Town and Country Planning Act, 1947 of United Kingdom.

Model Regional and Town Planning and Development Law, 1985 

Town and Country Planning Organization (TCPO) formulated the Model Town and Country Planning Law in the year 1960. This model Act was revised by TCPO in year 1985 as “Model Regional and Town Planning and Development Law” to enact a comprehensive urban and regional planning legislation in all the States and UT’s (Union Territories). The main contents include;
  • Constitution of State Regional and Town Planning Board by the State Government for the purpose of advising on the delineation of the region for the planned development 
  • Directing the preparation of metropolitan, regional and area plans by the metropolitan, regional and area planning and development authorities 
  • Setting up of metropolitan, regional and area planning and development authorities for different urban and rural areas within the State to undertake preparation of development plans and to enforce and implement them 
  • Coordinating the planning and implementation of physical development programmes
Model Law provided 3 steps for the administration of this law. 
  1. Preparation of existing land use map 
  2. Preparation of an outline development plan and comprehensive development plan and their enforcement 
  3. Preparation of detailed schemes of development or redevelopment as envisaged in the plans and their implementation 
Based on the Model Regional and Town Planning and Development Law,1985 ,many states enacted their Town and Country Acts. However, states like Haryana, Rajasthan and UT of Chandigarh do not have comprehensive Town and Country Planning Acts. Out of 7933 Towns, about 2032 towns have Master Plans (1483 notified +549 under preparation). 


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