The Union government on Tuesday announced the names of 13 more cities that will be developed under the Centre’s “Smart City Mission.” Lucknow in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh tops the list, followed by Warangal in Telangana and Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh.
These cities were chosen from the 23 that failed to get representation in the first round of a competition held in January, and participated in the “fast-track competition.” The results were announced by Urban Development Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday.
Other cities on the list are Chandigarh, Raipur (Chhattisgarh), New Town Kolkata, Bhagalpur (Bihar), Panaji (Goa), Port Blair (Andaman and Nicobar Islands), Imphal (Manipur), Ranchi (Jharkhand), Agartala (Tripura) and Faridabad (Haryana). “The 13 cities selected in the competition have proposed a total investment of Rs. 30,229 crore. With this, the investment proposed by 33 cities [20 cities made the cut in January] under the smart city plans is now Rs. 80,789 crore,” Mr. Naidu told the media.
Seven cities — Patna (Bihar), Shimla (Himachal Pradesh), Naya Raipur (Chhattisgarh), Itanagar (Arunachal Pradesh), Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh), Bengaluru (Karnataka) and Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) — that were not among the 100 shortlisted for the competition will be able to participate in the next round, the Minister added.
Of the 13 cities that qualified for the project, four are from BJP-ruled States (Chhattisgarh, Goa, Jharkhand and Haryana) while two are from Congress-governed States (Himachal Pradesh and Manipur). Lucknow is in Samajwadi Party-ruled Uttar Pradesh, while Bhagalpur is in Bihar, where the JD(U), the RJD and the Congress are ruling coalition partners. Warangal is in Telangana, which is ruled by the Telangana Rashtra Samithi.Apart from these, The Union Territories of Chandigarh and Port Blair in Andaman and Nicobar Islands were also among the winners of this round.
Ten cities that failed to make the cut are: Pasighat (Arunachal Pradesh), Shillong (Meghalaya), Namchi (Sikkim), Diu (Daman & Diu), Oulgaret (Puducherry), Silvassa (Dadra and Nagar Haveli), Kohima (Nagaland), Aizawl (Mizoram), Kavaratti (Lakshadweep) and Dehradun (Uttarakhand). They will be able to participate in the next round with other cities.
Highlights of project
Assured water and power supply, sanitation and solid waste management systems, efficient urban mobility and public transportation, IT connectivity, e-governance and citizen participation are some of the highlights of the smart city project.
It aims to transform 100 cities by 2019-20, with the Union government providing financial support of Rs. 48,000 crore over five years.
Each city will receive Central assistance of Rs. 200 crore in the first year and Rs. 100. crore over the three subsequent financial years. State governments and respective urban local bodies will also match the Centre’s contribution. While 20 cities were selected in 2015-16 as per the Mission’s guidelines, another 40 (including the 13)will be selected this year. The remaining will be chosen in the next financial year.
What are smart cities?
A 'smart city' is an urban region that is highly advanced in terms of overall infrastructure, sustainable real estate, communications and market viability. It is a city where information technology is the principal infrastructure and the basis for providing essential services to residents. There are many technological platforms involved, including but not limited to automated sensor networks and data centres.
According to the documents released on the Smart Cities website, the core infrastructure in a smart city would include:
— Adequate water supply
— Assured electricity supply
— Sanitation, including solid waste management
— Efficient urban mobility and public transport
— Affordable housing, especially for the poor
— Robust IT connectivity and digitalisation
— Good governance, especially e-Governance and citizen participation
— Sustainable environment
— Safety and security of citizens, particularly women, children and the elderly
— Health and education
(With PTI inputs)