Urban renewal, with a focus on inclusive development of urban centres, is one of the thrust areas in the National Common Minimum Programme and accordingly the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission was launched. This paper analyses the present urban development policies with a focus on coverage at the state and size-class levels, the extent of equity and effectiveness of the programme.

This paper overviews the debate on the relationship between the measures of globalization, economic growth and pace of urbanization, and speculates on its impact on the quality of life and poverty in the context of Asian countries. After experiencing
moderate to high urban growth for three to four decades since the 1950s, most of these countries have reported a significant deceleration.

The responsibility of municipalities to provide crucial services is being increasingly passed on to the resident welfare associations located in middle and upper middle class areas in cities. Similar tools of intervention are absent in the slums and low-income neighbourhoods and even the local ward committees fail to represent their needs and aspirations.