What is Land Use Pattern? Types of Land Use in India

Sansar LochanHuman Geography3 Comments

The layout or arrangement of the uses of the land is known as “land use pattern”. The land may be used for agriculture, forest, pasture etc. Land use is determined by many factors like relief features, climate, soil, density of population, technical and socio-economic factors.

Land Use Classification

Out of India’s total geographical area of 328.7 million hectares, the statistical information about the land use pattern in India is available for only about 305.69 million hectares. It is based on village papers and on estimates. The land use has changed drastically since 1950-51.

Types of Land Use in India

The important types of land use in the country are :-

  1. Forests area
  2. Land not available for cultivation
  3. Cultivable westeland
  4. Fallow land
  5. Net area sown

Forest area

During 1950-51 the area under forest was only 40.48 million hectares (14.2%) in India. But it has been increased to 80.20 million hectares (24.39%) in 2017-2018.  According to National Forest Policy 1952, the reporting area of the forest must be 33.3% of the total land. The proportion of the forest area is not evenly distributed in the country. Madhya Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Andaman Nicobar islands are reporting more area under forest. It is due to heavy rainfall and relief features. In contrast Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Haryana, Punjab and Goa states have less area under forests.

Land not available for cultivation

The land used for human settlements, transport routes, canals, quarries, the mountains, deserts, marshes etc. are coming under this category. It accounts 12.11% of total land in India. Arunachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Madhya Pradesh states are having more area under this category. In contrast, Dadra and Haveli, Chandigarh, Andaman and Nicobar and Sikkim are having less area under this category.

Other uncultivated lands including fallow lands

This category includes permanent pasture and other grazing area, land under miscellaneous tree, crops, groves and cultivable waste. This category covers about 8.6 % of the country’s total reporting land. The permanent pasture and other grazing are is reported high in the states of Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. But it is less in Manipur, Dadar and Nagar Haveli, Goa and Andaman and Nicobar islands. The land under miscellaneous tree crops and groves is found high in the states of Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha and Andhra Pradesh. On the other hand Chandigarh, Goa, Delhi and Puducherry reported very less area under this category. The cultivable waste land is found more in the states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. But it is reported very less in Tripura, Manipur, Sikkim and Punjab states.

Fallow lands

The land which is not utilized for cultivation for last 3 to 5 years is considered as fallow land. It may be cultivated. It accounts for about 8.13 % of the India’s total land. The land under this category is reported more in the states of Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Jharkhand. It is less in Tripura, Dadar and Nagar Haveli, Puducherry and Andaman Nicobar islands.

Net area sown

India has a net sown area of 46.2% of the total reporting land in India. There has been a phenomenal increase in the net area sown during the last five decades.This increase is due to the reclamation of barren, uncultivable land pasture land etc. As per the land use statistics 2013-14, the total geographical area of the country is 328.7 million hectares, of which 141.4 million hectares is the reported net sown area and 200.9 million hectares is the gross cropped area with a cropping intensity of 142 %.

Net sown area has reached its maximum level in Haryana. Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh are reporting less than 30% of net area sown.

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