Creation of a New District – UPSC Prelims

Process to create a new district in India:
  • The power to create new districts or alter or abolish existing districts rests with the State governments.
  • A new district can be created either through an executive order or by passing a law in the State Assembly.
  • Many States prefer the executive route by simply issuing a notification in the official gazette.
What is the role of Central government to play here?
  • The Centre has no role to play in the alteration of districts or creation of new ones. States are free to decide.
  • The Home Ministry comes into the picture when a State wants to change the name of a district or a railway station.
  • The departments such as the Ministry of Earth Sciences, Intelligence Bureau, Department of Posts, Geographical Survey of India Sciences, and the Railway Ministry, provides their clearance to the proposal of state government.
  • After examination of their replies, state government receives a no-objection certificate.
What is the rationale behind creating a new district in India?
  • States argue that smaller districts lead to better administration and governance.
  • For example, in 2016, the Assam government issued a notification to upgrade the Majuli sub-division to the Majuli district for “administrative expediency”.
What has been the trend?
  • According to the 2011 Census, there were 593 districts in the country.
  • Between 2001-2011, 46 districts were created by States.
  • Currently there are 718 districts in the country.
  • The surge in a number of districts is mostly due to the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh into A.P. and Telangana in 2014. Telangana at present has 33 districts and A.P. has 13 districts.
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