Modi government’s two leading schemes – 100 smart cities and urban rejuvenation programme for 500 towns and cities got a nod from the Cabinet. These initiatives are aimed at reorganization of urban landscape and to make such areas more livable and inclusive, besides driving economic growth. A sum of Rs.98,000 crore has been sanctioned to execute these schemes in the next five years.
The work is to be undertaken for smaller cities and towns with one lakh or more population under a new scheme named after former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee – Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT). The Centre will spend Rs.50,000 crore for this scheme. This will be the new scheme in place of JNNURM named after India’s first PM Jawaharlal Nehru during the UPA rule.
The cities selected through a “city challenge” competition under the smart city initiative will get central assistance of Rs.100 crore per year for five years. To start with, around 20 cities would be chosen for the Central assistance after the state governments come forward with names of cities they want to nominate.
A Ministry spokesperson said that the criteria for competition would be finalized soon and these will be linked to financing with the ability of the cities to perform and achieve mission objectives. According to an official release, the smart cities mission intends to promote adoption of smart solutions for efficient use of available assets, resources and infrastructure with the objective of enhancing the quality of urban life and providing a clean and sustainable environment.
Special focus will be on adequate and clean water supply, sanitation and solid waste management, efficient transportation, affordable housing for the poor, power supply, robust IT connectivity, e-governance, safety and security of citizens, health and education… See more