New Delhi: As many as 400 projects being undertaken by about ten cities under the Centre’s flagship Smart Cities Mission (SCM) are unlikely to meet the extended deadline of June 2024, an official aware of the matter said on Thursday.
The ministry of housing and urban Affairs (MoHUA) extended for the second time the Smart Cities Mission by a year till June 2024 to complete the pending work after requests from some cities that sought more time to complete their ongoing projects.
“We are tracking these 400-odd projects regularly. There is no doubt that the other remaining projects will be completed,” a MoHUA official said, adding that some of the stalled projects include road-building works stuck due to land disputes.
In some cities, there are infrastructure-heavy projects such as pipe laying for city-scale water supply. “The SCM team at MoHUA is holding meetings with the respective smart city CEOs to oversee the progress of these projects,” the official said.
Puducherry, Port Blair, Atal Nagar, Silvassa, Namchi, Kohima, Agartala, Pasighat, Imphal and Aizawl are some of the cities where the projects have been delayed. “These are smaller cities which do not have the experience of executing such high-cost projects,” said the official.
A total of 100 Smart Cities have been selected through four rounds of competition from January 2016 to June 2018. The project was slated to be completed within five years.
Applications of SCM are varied and include crime tracking, safety and security of citizens, transport management, solid waste management, water supply, and disaster management.
To date, installation of 76,000 CCTV surveillance cameras, building of over 2,500 km of roads with utility ducts and proper signages, introduction of more than 7,500 new buses, laying of 600 km of cycle tracks, creation of 6,855 smart school rooms, setting up of 40 digital libraries are some of the works completed under the flagship mission.
MoHUA is hosting a three-day ‘National Smart Cities Pavilion’ ending Friday to showcase many of its lighthouse projects across cities of India.
As part of the event, projects such as ‘Chappan Dukaan’ of Indore Smart City– a street food hub, area-based development of Udaipur Smart City and digitisation of manuscripts by Prayagraj Smart City are being highlighted.