The architecture act is a set of rules set by the Government of India in 1972, vesting power related to architecture rules and regulations to a Council of Architecture formed as a part of this act. The architecture act came immediately into force on September 1st, 1972. The act focuses on crucial matters related to the registration of practising architects, the standard of education for the architecture academia, criteria for a practising architect and qualifications for a working architect. The act overlooks the responsibilities of an architect and onto the foundation of academics for establishing responsible architects. The Council of Architecture forms rules and regulations that the Government of India directly overlooks before approval or disapproval. The Architects’ Act consists of 4 main chapters with 45 sections and one schedule.

An Overview of Architects Act, 1972.
Council of Architecture _ ©COA

Chapter 1: Definitions

The first chapter in the Architects Act is an introductory chapter describing the general vocabulary related to architecture. In this chapter of the act, specific header terms are defined elaborately. This chapter explains the terms ‘architect’, ‘council’, ‘Indian Institute of Architects’, ‘register’, ‘regulation’, and ‘rule’. The topics mentioned earlier are explained in detail and dedicated to being understood by an average literate person.

Chapter 2: Council of Architecture

The second chapter in the architects act discusses on responsibilities of the Council of Architects.

“A Council to be known as the Council of Architecture, which shall be a body corporate, having perpetual succession and a common seal, with power to acquire, hold and dispose of property, both movable and immovable, and to contract, and may by that name sue or be sued” — Architects’ act, 1972.

The head of the Council is to have a head office as allocated by the Official Gazette. The Council will have five members with recognized qualifications from the Indian Institute of Architecture. Two members will be elected by the All India Council for Technical Education established by the Government of India. One person is to be nominated by the Central Government, followed by two others by the Indian Institution of Engineers. Similarly, a member is to be selected from the Institution of Surveyors India. Among these allocations, there is a provision for the president and vice president of the Council to be elected by voting among the members. The elected president and vice president are to hold office for three years.

The Council is to have a meeting semiannually to discuss regulations and their implementation. Most members must agree on a rule or regulation before it is passed onto the Government.

Chapter 3: Registration of Architects

The act has formulated a provision for a register being set up by the Central Government, which is the responsibility of the Council to maintain. The record is to have information regarding the architect’s identity, nationality and address. It also includes information regarding the architect’s registration date and professional location. The members who have been registered are supposed to pay a certain amount of fees as prescribed by the rules of the Central Government. The members must have a recognized certificate as long as they have been practising architects for at least five years.

Chapter 4: Miscellaneous 

The fourth chapter of the Architects Act has subsidiary rules regulating the other three branches. The first rule mentions the illegal registration of a member to be fined Rs.1000/- for their action against the rules mentioned in the third chapter of the act. There is a provision for the Council of Architects to make a law inconsistent with the architects act, if need be, under the approval of the Central Government.

The other part of this chapter deals with imparting quality education and training to architecture academia, which will be regulated according to the Architecture Act. Similarly, the quality of examinations and examiners should be overlooked to an acceptable degree to avoid discrepancies. The architects also regulate the standards of the professional practice act, and the architects are to follow the etiquette and rules mentioned in the code.


The Council of Architecture has been granted the power to make rules and regulations which are to be approved by the Central Government. The codes are divided into eight parts and 30 sections. These regulations have further chapters that the Council of Architects governs and are to be followed by practising architects—the regulation deal with an audit, accounts, finances and inspection of quality education in architecture. 

Architectural Education

A part of architects acts to overlook the quality of education to be received by aspiring architects and to regulate it. The Minimum standards for Architectural Education were updated in 1983. There are several contents listed under this section of the Architects Act concerning the mentioned points, ‘Duration of the course’, ‘Admission to the architecture course’, ‘Intake and Migration’, ‘Courses and Period of Studies’, ‘Professional Examination’ and ‘Standards of Equipment and Material’. There are rules governing the quality of materials which are to be followed according to the code.

Physical Infrastructures

The regulation covers the standard dimension needed for a built-up educational structure for the teaching-learning process. The building should have at least five studios, adequate space for faculty members, a library, and workshops. An institution must have the provision of exhibition space and a conference room. A student is to have a minimum space of 15 sq. mm. Similarly; the institute should have sufficient facilities for sanitation and safety included in a hostel, if there are any. The act has mentioned an administration section to be placed on the institution’s premises. 

Lessons to learn

The Architects Act of 1972 defines the architecture field and its practice within a well-defined framework. This allows for better communication and education among the architects and society. India is as it is today in terms of architecture because of these rules and regulations. With time, architecture practice will reach its pinnacle should these accords be well respected and updated with the need of society.


Chakravorty, A. (2021, June 9). The Unique Position Of The Architects Act, 1972 – Construction & Planning – India. [online] Available at:–planning/1077872/the-unique-position-of-the-architects-act-1972

[Accessed April 18, 2023]

Council of Architecture. (2023). [online] Available at:

[Accessed April 18, 2023]

Guitel, M. (2017). The Architects Act, 1972. PRACTICE ARCHITECT’S ACT. [online] Available at:

[Accessed April 18, 2023]

Handbook of Professional Documents. (2011). [online] 

[Accessed April 18, 2023]

Swetha. (2022, November 7). [Editorial] Architects Act- Background, Highlights and Challenges | UPSC Notes. IAS EXPRESS. [online] Available at:

[Accessed April 18, 2023]


A passionate writer and an aspiring architect, Bibek Khanal is an architecture student from Nepal who finds comfort in making illustrations and writing poems. His heart is set on appreciating arts and architecture relics. Being a part of the architecture and the people around is a riveting experience for him.