How people in India’s top 53 cities commute to work

A data interactive on how, and how far, people in India’s top 53 cities commute to work

Photo: Mint
Photo: Mint

A greater percentage of workers in Rajkot drive to work than in any other city. Half the people using public transport in Vasai Virar travel more than 20km—one way. As many as 71% of women workers in Agra don’t travel to work. One-third of women workers in Chandigarh drive to work, the highest among all cities in India.

Such findings can be gleaned from a recently-released data set by Census 2011 on the mode of transport that “other workers”—those not engaged in household industry or agricultural occupations—use to commute to work and the distance they travel.

The data interactive below takes part of that data set and tailors it to present the picture of work-related travel—or, non-travel in many cases—in India’s top 53 cities, each of which has a population of 1 million or more. The interactive lets you cut the data in multiple ways: by gender, by three modes of transport and by five distance buckets.

It’s a commentary on many things. How public transport is a failure: less than 20% of workers use it in 33 of these 53 cities, the two exceptions being Greater Mumbai region and Kerala cities. How private transport does not have the numbers—only a quarter to a third of a city’s citizens use it to travel to work—but receives the most attention. How the lack of adequate and diverse employment opportunities mean that several tier-II and tier-III cities are still largely about work-from-home options. is a search engine for public data.