Internal Migration and its Impact on Big Cities

Push Factors

  • The decline in per capita share in the national resources, increase in unemployment due to technological change, and closure of certain local factories/industries in the region. For example, if people serving in a local factory becomes jobless due to the closure of the factory and there is no other suitable means of earning in the destination of origin, then they will be compelled (pushed) to move to a city to find the job of livelihood.
  • Movement from the locality of origin because of worse Law and Order situations, Terror events, and natural calamities like floods, epidemic,s, etc.
  • Lack of sufficient facilities in Education and Health Sectors at the place of origin.

Pull Factors

  • Jobs availability, better working environment, and higher wages attracting the people.
  • Better opportunities for education and higher living standard.
  • Freedom of marriage, safety, and security, and political awareness in cities.
  • Better health and recreational facilities for all people in urban areas.

Chain Migration

The chain migration may begin with a single migrant movement who establishes himself in the region of destination and after his success there, he calls wife, children, and other family members and friends/ relatives to the place of destination. When the community is well established, other persons of origin also join and complete the chain of family.

Insufficient facilities of Education and Health Services.

People move to reside settle in places where there are sufficient opportunities for education, healthcare, and other basic amenities of life. Our rural areas normally lack such basic facilities, hence the majority of them, with some financial ability, are moved to urban areas to reap the advantages of urban education and healthcare facilities. A better education system and improvised health services can help to keep social links alive. The expectation of better education and good health services are basis push factors.

Natural calamities.

Drought is the classic “push” affecting millions of people. Drought-prone areas in Pakistan have strong traditions of trade and labor migration. Floods in Pakistan are another major reason for internal migration or displacement of masses from their hometowns. Floods in 2010 had affected millions of people in all the four provinces of Pakistan who migrated temporarily to save destinations. Earthquakes are also the main reason for displacement, which was witnessed after the earthquake of 2005 in Pakistan when people living in northern areas and Kashmir were badly affected.

Various types of migration

Defining a migrant is not as easy as it may seem at first glance. One might suggest the migrant is someone who moves from one place to the other. But it is obvious that not all people who change their geographical position are migrants. For example, the students who live in hostels and the tourists and travelers who change their positions quite frequently are not migrants. In order to be considered an emigrant one must make a move of some consequence. Demographers define a person as a migrant if he changes his place of normal habitation for a substantial period of time preferably crossing an administrative or political boundary in the process. This implies that one has to distinguish between a mover and a migrant. A mover is a person who changes his place of residence; a migrant is one whose change of residence takes him into a new administrative unit. Thus all migrants are movers but all movers are not migrants.[3]

The movement of people from one place to another normally takes place in the following shapes.

Permanent and Long Term Migration

The shift of population from one geographical location to another is a widespread phenomenon that characterizes almost all human societies. Millions of people, all around the world, move each year in search of places more appropriate for their working and for living in permanently. People move from one place in the world to another or from one province to another province within the country for the purpose of taking up permanent residence. In case, however, if a migrant, after a reasonable period of time, makes his mind to return to his place of origin permanently, he will again be covered within the definition of a (returning) migrant.

Instances have also often been noticed that migration of people take place from the place their permanent residence to another place/region for the purpose of jobs etc. and they stay for decades until their job continues. However, during the whole stay, they had already made a mind for a final return to their permanent place of origin. During the tenure of stay at the place of destination, they also keep regular and close contact with their relatives left behind at place of origin, besides paying a visit there with appropriate intervals to meet their relatives. This type of long-term migration almost carries a similar impact as those of permanent migration.

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