The noise and bustle on the streets of India’s biggest cities is a defining characteristic of a country that’s home to over a billion people.
Every year, millions more leave their traditional homes in rural towns and villages and head into urban areas. The United Nations World Cities Report 2016 says 9.6 million people will move to New Delhi by 2030.
To qualify as a megacity under the UN definition, an urban area must have a population of 10 million people. The UN takes into account urban sprawl and measures populations beyond official city limits. On these criteria, India currently has five megacities.
1. New Delhi The capital city has a population of 26.5 million people
2. Mumbai India’s financial hub has a population of 21.4 million people
3. Kolkata An important trading hub, with 15 million people living in urban area
4. Bengaluru The ‘Silicon Valley’ of India; 10.5 million people call it home
5. Chennai Home of the Indian motor industry, as well as 10.2 million people