The Patnitop Development Authority came into existence on 26th of March 1992 vide notification SRO 69 dated: 26.03.1992 under section 4 of the Jammu & Kashmir Development Act 1970. The jurisdiction of the Authority is spread over an area of 265 Sq. Km notified as local area for the purpose of the said Act. The area extends from Sanasar to Basantgarh and prominent settlements like Sanasar, Batote (Partially), Patnitop, Karlah, Kud, Gourikund, Sudhmahadev, Mantalai, Dhuna, Latti, Dudu and Basantgarh. Initially the PDA was under the administrative control of Housing and Urban Development Department. It was during the year 1998 the Authority was brought under the administrative control of Tourism Department. The objective of bringing the Authority under Tourism Department was to create infrastructure incidental to the promotion of tourism in harmony with Environment / Ecology of the area. The primary objective of the Authority is to promote/ facilitate the development of only critical infrastructure without disturbing the Environment / Ecology of the area rather focus will be on sustained preservation and improvement of the fragile ecology. In order to plan for holistic development of the area, a Master Plan has been got prepared by Consulting Engineering Services (India) Pvt. Ltd. during the year 1995. As per the Master Plan, the area has been divided into three sub-circuits viz. Sub-circuit A “Kud-Patnitop-Sanasar”, Sub-circuit B “Gourikund-Sudhmahadev-Devak-Mantalai” and Sub-circuit C “Dhuna-Latti-Dudu-Basantgarh”. The entire Patnitop circuit has 13 settlements with estimated population of 28284. The Master Plan has been notified vide Notification SRO 117 dated: 25.04.2000.

The Master Plan of PDA analyzes the enormous potential available in Patnitop circuit and also identifies the various development projects needed for the entire circuit and in individual places of unique features. It envisages the development of the Patnitop circuit in every field like strengthening of the PDA, tourism infrastructure, improving the economic condition of the locals by developing Agriculture / Horticulture sectors, improving the water supply / sanitation/ power supply / communication / Road network, developing the commercial complexes, creating the facilities for adventure tourism / sports facilities / trekking / water sports / pilgrim tourism, creating high standard educational institutions / health centre, preserving the ecology / environmental wealth in the circuit as also creating the land bank of the PDA. The Master Plan classifies the green zones, agricultural zones, commercial zones, construction zones and no-construction zones in the major settlements. Besides this, the plan also envisages the guidelines and norms for any kind of development in the region, which has to be regulated by PDA. Vide SRO-128 dated: 08.04.2011 following new areas have been brought under the ambit of Patnitop development authority:

Tehsil Ramnagar: Dalsar, trarmian marta, thatlal (harsh nagar), jandrari, sunetar, amroh, incha

Tehsil Chenani: Sewna, padyal, champari, satyalta, carat, karian, banth

Tehsil Udhampur: Panchari (Chulna), suman janori, ladha, krimachi, samroli, upper samroli, latyar, chunti, katti, chirdi, kutlyar, bala, sampori, kultyar plain, och suba, och nihala, panwal, kither, meer, sankri, narsu, dramthal

After inclusion of the above mentioned areas, the total area under the jurisdiction of PDA has become 492 Sq. Kms.