Planning Techniques

Classification of Towns as per Census of India 2011

Classification of Towns

Classification of towns can be done on a number of basis and different countries and organizations use different classification of towns. It can be on basis of income level, education level, according to per capita income etc.

Classification of Towns as per census

  1. All places with a municipality, corporation, cantonment board or notified town area committee, etc.
  2. All other places which satisfied the following criteria:

i.          A minimum population of 5,000;

ii.          At least 75 per cent of the male main working population engaged in non-agricultural pursuits; and

iii.          A density of population of at least 400 persons per sq. km.

The first category of urban units is known as Statutory Towns. These towns are notified under law by the concerned State/UT Government and have local bodies like municipal corporations, municipalities, municipal committees, etc., irrespective of their demographic characteristics as reckoned on 31st December 2009. Examples: Vadodara (M Corp.), Shimla (M Corp.) etc.

The second category of Towns (as in item 2 above) is known as Census Town. These were identified on the basis of Census 2001 data.

The Census of India has classified towns into six categories on the basis of their population:

I) Class 1 towns with more than 1, 00,000 population,

2) Class II towns with 50,000 to 99,999 population,

3) Class III towns with 20,000 to 49,999 population,

4) Class IV towns with 10,000 to 19,999 population,

5) Class V towns with 5000 to 9,999 population

6) Class VI towns with less than 5,000 population.


Urban Agglomeration (UA): An urban agglomeration is a continuous urban spread constituting a town and its adjoining outgrowths (OGs), or two or more physically contiguous towns together with or without outgrowths of such towns. An Urban Agglomeration must consist of at least a statutory town and its total population (i.e. all the constituents put together) should not be less than 20,000 as per the 2001 Census.

You might be interested in  Delineation Of Functional Regions

Number of Towns

In varying localconditions, there were similar other combinations which have been treated as urban agglomerations satisfying the basic condition of contiguity.

Examples: Greater Mumbai UA, Delhi UA, etc.

Out Growths (OG): An Out Growth (OG) is a viable unit such as a village or a hamlet or an enumeration block made up of such village or hamlet and clearly identifiable in terms of its boundaries and location. Some of the examples are railway colony, university campus, port area, military camps, etc., which have come up near a statutory town outside its statutory limits but within the revenue limits of a village or villages contiguous to the town.

Examples: Central Railway Colony (OG), Triveni Nagar (N.E.C.S.W.) (OG), etc. Each such town together with its outgrowth(s) is treated as an integrated urban area and is designated as an ‘urban agglomeration’.

Number of UAs/Towns and Out Growths (OGs):

At the Census 2011 there are 7,935 towns in the country. The number of towns has increased by 2,774 since last Census. Many of these towns are part of UAs and the rest are independent towns. The total number of Urban Agglomerations/Towns, which constitutes the urban frame, is 6166 in the country.

The following is the list of most populous cities in India. The population statistics indicated in this article are for the year 2011. The list does not indicate the population of the urban agglomerations.

Classification of Towns

Leave a Reply