ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Indian Urbanism and the Terrain of the Law

In the controversies around, and legal and political challenges to, the Bangalore-Mysore Infrastructure Corridor being constructed by Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprises, one can see signs of a new historical stage and urban form. Court judgments between 1997 and 2006 relating to land acquisition for infrastructure projects such as NICE tell us about the new urban form, which the courts feel obliged to bring into being, displaying a proselytising zeal in promoting corridor urbanism. The corridor project has seized hold of the planning, bureaucratic, and judicial imagination in ways that signal a consensus about the imperatives of rapid capitalist growth, uncontaminated by any early postcolonial notions of developmentalist growth.

Michael Collins, Lisa Mitchell and Sudev Sheth first urged me to present this material at a conference on South Asian Cities at the University of Pennsylvania, 30–31 March 2013. Leo Saldanha and Devika Narayan provided critical support. A more audacious framework was presented at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library in 2014. To the late M S S Pandian, A R Vasavi and Narayani Gupta, for their readings and words of caution, many thanks. A different version of this article has appeared in South Asia Chronicle.

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