2022 marks 50 years since the enactment of the Architects Act of 1972. Comment on the state of architecture in India. What can be done to strengthen the profession?

The modern profession of Architecture was given a statutory status in India by “The Architects Act of 1972”. Architecture as a separate profession emerged during the 19th century in the United Kingdom and it has been growing steadily in India after the passage of this law. However, there are several issues related to the act which has led to its slow growth and fierce competition from engineering services.

Highlights of the Act:

  • The act helps to differentiate the profession of architecture from the profession of engineers and other related vocational services.
  • However, the architectural services are not exclusive for architects as they overlap with the engineering services, especially the civil engineering.

Challenges:

  • The profession faces huge competition and bitter rivalry from other engineering fields.
  • There is a wide overlap among architecture and engineering services, hence complete separation of both is not possible.
  • There exists low professional fee structures for architects and they haven’t got their due rights even after 50 years of passage of the act.
  • There is a lack of protection to this profession from the market forces.
  • Confusion and lack of consensus for solutions to the existing problems.

Way forward:

The archaic notions of profession should be abandoned because of its narrow jurisdictional boundaries. There is a need to expand the service by increasing internal cohesion and improving professional ethics and quality of services.

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