New Delhi, August 29 2015: Ninety eight Indian towns and cities have been selected to 'get smart'. Minister of Urban Development M.Venkaiah Naidu has announced the places selected for development as smart cities. These cities and towns were nominated by respective States and Union Territories at the end of first stage of ‘City Challenge’ competition in which all the urban local bodies in each State and UT were evaluated based on their financial and institutional capacities and past track record.
-24 cities are capital cities;
-24 are business and industrial centres;
-18 are of cultural and tourism importance;
-5 are port cities and three are educational and healthcare hubs.
In terms of population
-8 have population up to one lakh: Panaji, Diu,Silvassa, Kavaratti, Dharmashala, New Town, Kolkata, Pasighat in Arunachal Pradesh and Namchi(Sikkim)
-35 have population between one and five lakhs;
-21 cities are in the population range of five to ten lakhs;
-25 have population of above 10 lakhs and below 25 lakhs;
-5 in the range of 25 to 50 lakhs and
-Four viz., Chennai, Greater Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Greater Mumbai have population above 50 lakh.
( One lakh is 100,000)
Nine capital cities viz., Itanagar, Patna, Shimla, Bengaluru, Daman, Thiruvananthapuram, Puducherry, Gangtok and Kolkata failed to be selected and this goes to prove that the smart city selection was not influenced by the stature or importance of the cities. Two more cities would be announced in due course since the Government of Jammu & Kashmir sought more time to make up its choice while additional information was sought from the Government of Uttar Pradesh regarding the 13th smart city slot allotted to that State.
The Minister said that the 98 cities selected under Smart City Mission have a population of about 13 crore ( 130 million) accounting for over 35% of the country’s urban population. He further said that under Smart City Mission and Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT), 80% of total urban population would benefit from enhanced quality of living. All the selected cities will have to prepare city level Smart City Plans and these will be evaluated in the second stage of competition based on a broad set of criteria to pick up the top scoring 20 cities for financing during this financial year. Funds may be released to these 20 cities by the end of this year, he said. Others will be asked to improve upon the identified deficiencies before participating in the next two rounds of competition. Those cities to be selected in the second stage of competition would be provided with central assistance of Rs.200 crore ( Rs 2 billion) in the first year followed by Rs.100 cr ( Rs 1 billion) each year during the next three years, the Minister informed adding:
“ A smart city would ensue core infrastructure needed for decent living in urban areas. We are not aiming at making our urban landscape look fanciful and flashy. The prime objective is to enhance the quality of urban life by addressing deficiencies in core infrastructure. Expectations in various quarters may be high but the Mission is very practical and realistic in its intentions and objectives.”
FULL LIST of 98 proposed smart cities ( statewise)
Andaman and Nicobar Islands
1) Port Blair
Dadra and Nagar Haveli
Daman and Diu
1) Navi Mumbai
4) Greater Mumbai
2) Greater Warangal
1) New Town Kolkata