Q. 6

Write about the city work, housing and neighbourhoods in colonial India.

Answer :

Urbanization in colonized India was a slow process that occurred in three presidencies- Madras, Bombay and Calcutta.


City work :


• The three presidencies served as multifunctional cities which had factories, warehouses, trade and also catered people from different professions.


• Bombay emerged as one of the main cities with setting up of cotton mill, industrialization began in the city.


• Bombay also had ports that served as a major outlet for exporting cotton and opium.


• There was an increase in trade in Bombay with the establishment of the railway. Maritime trade also increased.


• The cities have facilities like hospital, educational centres, libraries, etc.


• People belonging from different sectors e.g. business, law, trade, merchants, etc settled in the cities.


Housing and neighbourhood:


• Overcrowding of cities led to unplanned housing. There was a water problem due to such an unplanned settlement.


• Settlements were based on race- native town and white settlement.


• The rich families of merchants and other occupation lived in sprawling bungalows.


• The labour class or poor lived in chawls. Chawls were divided into single-room accommodations with no private toilets.


• High rents of chawls also made people share their small rooms, thus it led to overcrowding a small area.


• Sanitation and hygiene were not at all maintained in these areas.


• Water scarcity also led to an unhygienic way of living.


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