The Bharatiya Janata Party-led NDA government on Thursday unveiled the list of 98 cities that will be part of its ambitious Smart Cities project. Union Minister of Urban Development Venkaiah Naidu released the list of 98 cities, including 13 cities from Uttar Pradesh and 12 from Tamil Nadu.
Other cities include 10 from Maharashtra, 7 from Madhya Pradesh ,3 each from Bihar & Andhra Pradesh.
While announcing the list, Naidu said that his government’s prime motive was to enhance urban life.
“Smart cities need smart people. We need people’s co-operation to move forward in our mission,” he added.
“Smart cities will have the core infrastructure and will give a quality and decent life to citizens. It will enable a clean environment and provide smart solutions to problems,” he said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched the criteria and guidelines for 100 Smart Cities to be selected through city challenge competition in June 25.
Barring Jammu and Kashmir, all states have finalised the names of proposed Smart Cities through competition. Centre has earmarked Rs 48,000 crore for development of 100 smart cities.
Each smart city would get a Central assistance of Rs 100 crore per year for five years.
After the announcement of the 98 smart cities, India Ratings & Research chief economist Devendra Kumar Pant said, “Selection of smart cities is first step. Major challenge is to provide quality urban services such as 24X7 water supply, sanitation, drainage, solid waste management, sewage treatment. Looking at finances of urban local bodies, which are far from healthy, provision of these services will be challenging.”
Highlights of Venkaiah Naidu’s speech while announcing the list of Smart Cities:
– Making cities smart will make them engines of economic growth besides giving decent life to the citizens
-13 crore population across 98 cities which is 35% of urban population will be covered under SmartCity Mission
– Central government proposes to give financial support to Mission to the extent of Rs 48,000 crores over 5 years
– State/UTs & urban local bodies have an important role to play in the implementation of SmartCity Mission