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Does anyone know how to find a shapefile with boundaries of Indian municipalities? I have tehsil boundaries as for year 2001, but I would like boundaries of municipalities. Ideally, also historic ones. I believe Census of India has the information but I couldn't find any maps or shapefiles... Many thanks Sheila

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As someone who has worked with various Government Bodies in India, I am not hopeful that you'll find this data online. Even Census of India has the maps upto sub-district level. The Muncipal boundaries do not match the sub-districts. I'll love to be proved wrong though. –  Devdatta Tengshe Apr 24 '13 at 3:55
Is the data you need visible on OpenStreetMap? If yes, you could use github.com/bussed/osmgadm to get the boundary shapefiles. –  til_b Apr 24 '13 at 7:25
@Sunil, now freely available or not freely available? –  Chethan S. Apr 24 '13 at 8:22
@Sheila Not sure but contact National Informatics Center (India) they have few updated maps. Unfortunately in our India its not freely available. –  Sunil Apr 24 '13 at 8:35
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1 Answer

You can find what you looking for in:




The GADM data is available here, you can choose the country and download format required.

Available File Formats are:

A "shapefile" consist of at least three actual files. This is a commonly used format that can be directly used in Arc-anything, DIVA-GIS, and many other programs. Unfortunately, many of the non standard latin (roman / english) characters are lost in the shapefile. Even if you use the shapefile for mapping, you can use the .csv file that comes with the shapefiles, or the attribute data in the geodatabase for the correct attributes (the geodatabase is a MS Access database that (on windows) can be accessed via ODBC).

An "ESRI personal geodatabase" is a MS Access file that can be opened in ArcGIS (version 10). One of its advantages, compared to a shapefile, is that it can store non-latin characters (e.g. Cyrillic and Chinese characters). You can also query the (attribute) data in Access or via ODBC.

An "ESRI file geodatabase" can be opened in ArcGIS (version 10). It can also store non-latin characters (e.g. Cyrillic and Chinese characters).

A "Google Earth .kmz" file can be opened in Google Earth.

A "RData" file can be used in R (with the sp package loaded). See the CRAN spatial task view

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The GADM database of Global Administrative Areas looks interesting but to help @Sheila and subsequent readers of your Answer could you perhaps describe how to find that particular dataset once on the page, please? –  PolyGeo Apr 24 '13 at 10:34
GDAM does not have municipal boundaries. It only has tehsil boundaries, and even those are quite old. –  Devdatta Tengshe Nov 19 '13 at 3:28
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