CPR-CSH Workshop on 'Delhi without Borders: Contradictions and Conflicts of a Delirious City Region'

CPR-CSH Workshop on 'Delhi without Borders: Contradictions and Conflicts of a Delirious City Region'
Nitin Bathla
Tuesday, 27 August 2019 Add to Calendar 2019-08-27 15:45:00 2019-08-27 15:45:00 Asia/Kolkata CPR-CSH Workshop on 'Delhi without Borders: Contradictions and Conflicts of a Delirious City Region' Please note that the venue has changed back to the Conference Hall at CPR.  The 1962 masterplan of Delhi introduced a critical intertwining between Delhi and its region. Not only did this initiate the restructuration of Delhi's metropolitan processes into a continually expanding territory, but more importantly it forged a land-based economic relationship between the city and its region. Thus, concomitant to the radical transformations in Delhi, profound acts of ecological dispossession, enclosure, and infrastructure violence have also been taking shape in its region.  The delirious city-region today represents a tapestry of stark disparities; of sparsely occupied luxury condominiums popping up next to dense settlements housing masses of labour migrants, of industrial-logistic spaces set amidst remnants of agro-pastoral landscapes, of operational landscapes set within sacred ecologies, and of ever new infrastructure networks set in bypass to the perpetually incomplete existing ones. This churning of territory for urban production is revealing a palimpsest of subaltern and planetary dynamics, sedentary and nomadic practices, and urban and agrarian societies, thus revealing unique socio-spatial conflicts and political compromises.  This presentation would bring together observations, conclusions, and findings from over two years of ethnographic inquiry by the speaker in an attempt to unpack contradictions and conflicts in the urbanisation of a Delhi without borders. About the Speaker Nitin Bathla is an urban researcher, artist, and educator based at ETH Zurich where he is currently pursuing his doctoral studies on a Swiss Excellence Fellowship. He has practised actively in the domain of social design and urban research in India. Nitin’s work focuses on labour, housing, and land ecology. Aside from academic writing, Nitin works on film-making and community-based art projects. Find all the available videos of our previous workshops, here. This is the hundredth and fifteenth in a series of Urban Workshops planned by the Centre de Sciences Humaines (CSH), New Delhi and Centre for Policy Research (CPR). These workshops seek to provoke public discussion on issues relating to the development of the city and try to address all its facets including its administration, culture, economy, society and politics. For further information, please contact: Olivier Telle of CSH at olivier.telle@csh-delhi.com, Partha Mukhopadhyay at partha@cprindia.org or Marie-Hélène Zerah at marie-helene.zerah@ird.fr Conference Hall, Centre for Policy Research
3:45 pm
Conference Hall, Centre for Policy Research
RELATED PROJECT(S):
Part 1: Workshop
Part 2: Q&A

Please note that the venue has changed back to the Conference Hall at CPR. 

The 1962 masterplan of Delhi introduced a critical intertwining between Delhi and its region. Not only did this initiate the restructuration of Delhi's metropolitan processes into a continually expanding territory, but more importantly it forged a land-based economic relationship between the city and its region. Thus, concomitant to the radical transformations in Delhi, profound acts of ecological dispossession, enclosure, and infrastructure violence have also been taking shape in its region. 

The delirious city-region today represents a tapestry of stark disparities; of sparsely occupied luxury condominiums popping up next to dense settlements housing masses of labour migrants, of industrial-logistic spaces set amidst remnants of agro-pastoral landscapes, of operational landscapes set within sacred ecologies, and of ever new infrastructure networks set in bypass to the perpetually incomplete existing ones. This churning of territory for urban production is revealing a palimpsest of subaltern and planetary dynamics, sedentary and nomadic practices, and urban and agrarian societies, thus revealing unique socio-spatial conflicts and political compromises. 

This presentation would bring together observations, conclusions, and findings from over two years of ethnographic inquiry by the speaker in an attempt to unpack contradictions and conflicts in the urbanisation of a Delhi without borders.

About the Speaker

Nitin Bathla is an urban researcher, artist, and educator based at ETH Zurich where he is currently pursuing his doctoral studies on a Swiss Excellence Fellowship. He has practised actively in the domain of social design and urban research in India. Nitin’s work focuses on labour, housing, and land ecology. Aside from academic writing, Nitin works on film-making and community-based art projects.

Find all the available videos of our previous workshops, here.


This is the hundredth and fifteenth in a series of Urban Workshops planned by the Centre de Sciences Humaines (CSH), New Delhi and Centre for Policy Research (CPR). These workshops seek to provoke public discussion on issues relating to the development of the city and try to address all its facets including its administration, culture, economy, society and politics. For further information, please contact: Olivier Telle of CSH at olivier.telle@csh-delhi.com, Partha Mukhopadhyay at partha@cprindia.org or Marie-Hélène Zerah at marie-helene.zerah@ird.fr