The President of India, Smt. Droupadi Murmu felicitated the winners of the fourth edition of the India Smart Cities Award Contest (ISAC) 2022 in Indore today i.e. on 27th September 2023.
The ISAC has been organized under the Smart Cities Mission, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India since 2018.
The Conclave witnessed the participation of various dignitaries, including Shri Mangubhai C. Patel, Governor, Madhya Pradesh, Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, Minister, MoHUA, Shri Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Chief Minister, Madhya Pradesh, Shri Kaushal Kishore, MoS, MoHUA, and Shri Bhupendra Singh, Urban Development Minister, Madhya Pradesh.
While addressing the event, the President expressed her happiness over the increase in the country’s overall investment in urban development. Applauding the move, she said that our country's overall investment in urban development has, over the last decade, been more than 10 times what it was earlier. “The contribution of Smart Cities Mission in implementing best practices and developing viable business models is very important,” she said.
The President also talked about the focus of G-20 on areas pertaining to Urban Development. She said that Urban 20, which is a sub-group of the G20, attempted to establish a sustainable practice of connectivity between cities.
“Through this, a collective message was also given that the management of cities has an important role in pursuing the priority of sustainable development. Therefore, we should learn from the best practices and business models of the world’s best-managed cities and also share our successful efforts with other countries. Collaboration at local and global level is essential for overall and sustainable development”, she added.
Noting the significance of Integrated Command and Control Centers (ICCCs) in smart cities, the President said that all the 100 smart cities have ICCCs which are taking decisions using data. CCTV surveillance cameras are helping to strengthen law and order today.
“But there is a need to take more strong steps especially to ensure the safety of women. I am confident that the efforts being made in these 100 smart cities will prove very useful for our more than 4800 towns and cities”, the President added.
During the event, the President urged the Mayors and Municipal Commissioners from different cities of the country to move forward with new confidence and new energy. “I hope that all of you will use the information about successful efforts shared in this conclave in your respective cities. By doing this you all will make this event more meaningful”, she said.
Addressing the gathering, Minister of Housing & Urban Affairs Shri Hardeep Singh Puri shared Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s transformational vision for planned urbanisation. He highlighted that the Smart Cities Mission embodies the honourable Prime Minister’s vision for a ‘New Urban India’ and it is a key component of India’s objective of becoming a developed country by 2047.
Shri Puri said that the Smart Cities Mission has sparked innovation in India’s urban ecosystems while also building core infrastructure and strengthening services in India’s 100 biggest cities. It has fostered deep partnerships with government, global organisations, partner cities, academia and industry, he said.
Most importantly, the Minister highlighted that it has empowered the third level of governance in the country by providing much-needed technical and management support through the Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) that have led the building of social, economic, institutional, and physical infrastructure in a citizen-centric, future-ready way.
He said that 100 operational Integrated Command and Control Centres (ICCCs) which provide real-time decision-making capabilities through the use of cameras, IOT devices, sensors, and other technologies, have served as ‘War Rooms’ during the pandemic for city leaders to collect information, develop strategies, and execute civic functions.
Drawing attention to the achievements of the Smart Cities Mission, the Union Minister said that a total of 7,934 projects worth Rs. 171,044 crores have been sanctioned and 6,069 projects worth Rs. 1,10,794 crores completed under the Mission. Another 1,865 projects worth Rs. 60,250 crores on target for completion by June 2024.
Moreover, approx. Rs. 25,000 crores worth of PPP projects have been delivered so far. He highlighted that under the Mission, more than 2,700 kms of smart roads have been constructed; close to 7,000 smart classrooms have been built; more than 50 lakh LED/solar lights have been installed and more than 300 smart health centres have been constructed. 1,884 emergency call boxes and 3,000 public address systems and traffic enforcement systems have been installed to improve public safety, he said.
Complimenting the city of Indore for its excellence in urban governance, Shri Hardeep S Puri said that Indore is synonymous with winning awards and accolades. It has also pioneered innovations in waste management, carbon credits, digital technology, and public open spaces. Indore has been a model of urban governance and civic participation for cities not just in India, but across the world. He said that the City has set a new benchmark for consistency.
The minister congratulated the 31 cities that received awards for their projects and initiatives. “Your recognition is well deserved; more than 840 applications were received this year for the awards”, he said.
The minister also applauded Surat and Agra for their second and third-placed finishes among cities, and Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh among the states.
Earlier in the day, Shri Mangubhai C. Patel, Governor of Madhya Pradesh released the following 4 documents, viz., (a) ISAC awards 2022 compendium, (b) Compendium of the newsletter of SCM, (c) Report by UN-Habitat: Smart Cities Mission – Localizing Sustainable Development Goals and (d) ISAC awards 2023 brochure (e-release).
The Conclave witnessed the enthusiastic participation of all 100 smart cities that are leading a paradigm shift in the practice of city development by being at the forefront of urban innovation. The event not only provided a platform for the cities to showcase their exemplary work done under the Mission, but also enabled peer-to-peer learning and disseminated best practices.
The conclave featured an extensive display of award-winning projects undertaken by the cities under the Smart Cities Mission, which was visited by more than 2,000 people. There were 5 State/UT stalls, 13 city stalls and more than 15 project models. Further, a smart street was created which featured walkable streets, an Intelligent Traffic Management System (ITMS) and smart signages. Dialogues with award-winning city CEOs of cities such as Indore, Surat, Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, Belagavi, Ranchi, etc. Was also organised which led to stimulating discussions and peer-to-peer learning.