CREATION/ABOLITION OF DISTRICTS IN INDIA
2nd August, 2022 POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
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- The State cabinet of West Bengal headed by the Chief Minister has approved the creation of 7 new districts in the state.
- This will increase the number of districts in West Bengal from the existing 23 to 30.
- The Chief Minister stated that;
- A new Sundarban district will be carved out of the South 24-Parganas district.
- 2 new districts will be created out of the North 24-Parganas district.
- A new district in Basirhat.
- A new district will be carved out of the existing Bankura district.
- 2 new districts will be created out of the Murshidabad district.
Creation of New Districts
- States keep creating new districts from time to time to make governance easier and to bring the government and the administration closer to the people.
- Sometimes, the decision to create a new district is influenced by local demands.
- In April 2022, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister announced 13 new districts to fulfil his election promise.
- He believes that the decentralisation and smaller administrative units will bring better and more transparent governance and smoother and more effective delivery of welfare.
- The same reasons would apply to West Bengal too.
- As per Census 2011 figures, on average 4 million people live in each of 23 districts in West Bengal.
- This is among the highest in the country.
- The Power to decide on creating or scrapping districts or changing their boundaries lies with the state governments, who can pass a law in the Assembly or simply issue an order and notify it in the gazette.
- The Union government does play a role, however, when a change of name of a district or railway station is changed.
- The request of the state government is sent to several central government departments to get a no-objection certificate.
- The number of districts around the country is increasing with time.
- The 2001 Census recorded 593 districts, which increased to 640 in 2011.
- Currently, India has more than 775 districts.
- Uttar Pradesh has the highest number of districts (75) in the country, Madhya Pradesh (52) at 2nd position.
- Goa has only 2 districts.
- The Kachchh district of Gujarat is the largest in the area.
- Mahe district of Puducherry union territory is the smallest district in the area.
- The largest district by population is Thane (Maharashtra).
- Dibang Valley in Arunachal Pradesh is the lowest populated district of India.