Smart cities in India to get data-driven governance! Check Modi government’s mega plan

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New Delhi | Published: July 29, 2019 2:02:39 PM

Most of the authorities of the 100 Smart Cities have done self-assessments and reports have been submitted to the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

smart city mission indiaChallenges that authorities of these cities face are that officials, including some CDOs, will have to get used to the task of mapping data and using it to provide better governance. (Representative image)

Smart cities across India to have SMART governance! With an aim to provide world-class governance in 100 smart cities in India, each city will have a chief data officer (CDO). The process of appointing CDOs has begun and the municipal authorities of these 100 smart cities have been entrusted with the responsibility of building its own “data cell” by the central government, according to an IE report. The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, that is nodal authority for ‘Smart Cities Mission’, has asked each municipality of 100 smart cities to appoint departmental “data champions”, and push for “data alliances”. This is part of Smart Cities Mission’s “Data Maturity Assessment Framework”. The central government has taken this step to understand data and patterns at the city level, the report said.

Most of the authorities of the 100 Smart Cities have done self-assessments and reports have been submitted to the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs. IT and digitization tenders worth Rs 13,000-crore have been put out. Once they start functioning, these projects will derive 2,000 to 6,000 terabytes (TB) of data from traffic systems, CCTV cameras, water flow sensors, and among others. The data will be then channelized into cities’ Integrated Control and Command Centres.

However, cities need a data policy because without that even CDOs would find it difficult to work. Challenges that authorities of these cities face are that officials, including some CDOs, will have to get used to the task of mapping data and using it to provide better governance. Smart Cities Mission Director Kunal Kumar categorically stated that officials should avoid collecting purpose-less data. Data should not be collected for the sake of collection, he said. Shubhangi Gadhave is the only CDO (Nagpur) who has managed to submit a city data policy as per the deadline.

According to the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs there are a total number of 100 winning proposals for the smart cities project. The total urban population impact of the ambitious project is expected to be 99,630,069, while the total cost will be approximately Rs 2,03,172 crore. The total area-based development cost is Rs 164,204 crore and the total pan city solution cost is Rs 38,914 crore, as per details provided by Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

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