Millennium Post

Getting smart

The Indian government's flagship initiative for making Smart Cities is an integrated approach to upgrade a city in all its interconnected aspects. The Smart City Mission is an urban renewal and retrofitting programme by the government with the aim to develop 100 smart cities across the country in order to make them both citizen-friendly and sustainable. The Union Ministry of Urban Development is entrusted with the responsibility to implement this mission in collaboration with the state governments of the respective cities. As an idea, smart cities are not simply about impressively developing and upgrading cities from their present statuses but this initiative is essentially a combined effort of both state and Central governments to collaborate for a common goal and general welfare of people. Developing 100 cities in the country as model areas based on an area development plan is expected to have a rub-off effect on other parts of the city and nearby cities and towns. The trickle-down effect of such a development move is the result that is actually sought. A smart city housing people will also house all the amenities and facilities and services that people will need. Generation of employment is a prominent aspect of this and subsequently, education, pollution control, and maintenance of most basic facilities such as roads and sewage. For a second round of Smart Cities Mission likely to be rolled out in 2020, whatever that was left out in the scheme will be covered. A five-year scheme started in June 2015, many of its water and sewage management projects are likely to be accomplished towards the end of the scheme, that is, by June 2020. Sorting out what existing scheme will be the instrument to execute the Smart Cities Mission is an administrative deliberation but what is of greater consequence is that the impacts of the development initiatives be lasting and sustainable.

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