Centre will not set targets under Smart Cities Mission as it is states that will rope in private players and involve citizens to create facilities and infrastructure, said NITI Aayog Member Bibek Debroy.
“The government is not going to decide a set of targets (for smart cities mission) like that in Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM),” Debroy said at a seminar on ‘Engineering Smart Cities’ organised by Consulting Engineers Association of India (CEAI) here.
He said, “What is significantly different about this way is that as compared to JNNURM, it is not that the government is planning to do A, B, C, D. It is not that the government is going to spend X amount of resources. It is about states involving the private sector, involving citizens.”
He pointed out, “Why should NITI plan what should be done for the states. It is for the states to figure out what they want to do. And the NITI is there to facilitate that. Also, it is for the citizens to decide what form of smartness they want in their cities.”
“The 100 Smart Cities is one of the most promising projects by the Indian government, albeit with its share of challenges and opportunities. ‘Smart City’ which encompasses efficient, livable and sustainable urban area, efficient use of scares resources like water and energy, smart mobility, and smart governance,” he said.
“Smart Cities will have to provide good quality but affordable housing, cost-efficient physical, social and institutional infrastructure,” he added.