Population Density in India

Unevenness of distribution is an important feature of India’s population. Uttar Pradesh alone houses 16. 17 per cent of the country’s population. The state’s population is more than the total popula¬tion of Japan which is the seventh largest country of the world (in terms of population). Of the 35 states and union territories of the country 18 contain more than 1 per cent of India’s population. These together house 97 per cent of the country’s total population.Similarly five states consisting of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra, West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh with only 30 per cent of the country’s total area support about 50 per cent of its population. The concentration index was less than 0. 5 in about one-fourth of the districts in India and was more than 1. 5 in about one-fifth of the districts in the country implying that about half of the districts in the country were either sparsely populated or were peopled crowdedly.While the sparsely populated districts were confined largely to the interior heart¬land and the Himalayas, the crowded districts were located largely in the alluvial belts. Since the main¬stay of the country’s economy continues to be agri¬culture, the factors that govern distribution of popu¬lation in the country are those that promote good agriculture. The availability of cultivable land, depth of the soil, fertility of the soil, depth of underground water table, availability of water for irrigation are, thus, some of the factors that have guided the distri¬butional pattern of population in the country (Chandna, 1996, p. 6). Wide regional disparities in the index of concentration of population were observed at more level. The district of Twenty-four Parganas (West Bengal) had the distinction of having highest degree of concentration of population in the country (6. 33) while Yanam (Pondicherry) was the most thinly populated district (0. 006). While the areas adjoining China, Myanmar have low concentration index, those bordering with Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal ex¬hibit high concentration index.A very low concen¬tration index of less than 0. 5 was observed in about 106 districts of the country mostly lying in the Himalayan region, central highlands, Thar Desert and distantly located islands in the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea. On the contrary 75 districts mostly belonging to the Lower and Middle Ganga Plain, coastal plains of the Peninsula and industrialised- urbanised areas had high concentration index

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