The winds of economical changes are in favour of us for the past couple of years. It seems like it will blow more smoothly as our economy is widely anticipated to grow continuously for the second financial year. One among the major reforms that will cater this economic boom is the proposal of Smart City, which aims for more economic growth, clean environments and rich culture heritage. The latest news is that the government is going to announce the first batch of 20 smart cities in this month. The Smart City project aims at developing 100 smart cities as satellite towns of bigger cities and modernizing the prevailing medium-sized cities. While, 20 cities are planned to be identified this month, the rest 40 each is likely to be declared in the consecutive years.
The evaluation of the smart city plans of 97 cities in the second stage of ‘City Challenge’ completion is already in progress. The results of it will be announced in a short span of time. The selection of cities for the fund allocation is performed on the basis of objective criteria of total population in the urban areas and its number of statutory local bodies, besides urban poor in each state ending discretion and subjectivity, said the press release of centre.
The developments of these Smart Cities are well supported by other flagship programs. An investment of Rs 42,000 crore has been allocated for developing basic infrastructure and affordable housing. This includes Rs 19,170 crore under Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) spend on improving infrastructure related to water supply, urban transport, sewerage works, storm water drains and open spaces, spread across 474 cities in 18 states. In another flagship program, Awas Yojana (Urban) an investment of Rs 22,000 crores has been approved. This aims at constructing 4.25 Lakh houses for the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) in 227 cities in 11 states.