73% of Smart Cities Mission projects have been completed

According to the Union Urban Affairs Ministry, tremendous progress has been made under the Smart Cities Mission, with more than 90% of the budgeted money being used and 73% of the projects now completed.

Why are we debating this?

  • The projects were scheduled to be finished within five years of the city’s selection.
  • However, in 2021, the Ministry altered the date for all cities to June 2023, which was previously the deadline only for Shillong.

What is Smart Cities Mission?

  • The Smart Cities Mission is a Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry project that PM launched on June 25, 2015.
  • Cities across the country were requested to submit suggestions for initiatives that would improve municipal services and make their areas more livable.
  • The Ministry selected 100 cities for the Mission in five rounds between January 2016 and June 2018 (when the final city, Shillong, was chosen).

How does it work?

  • Each smart city has established a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) that is in charge of planning, assessing, approving, and releasing money, as well as implementing, administering, operating, monitoring, and evaluating development initiatives.
  • The SPV is directed by a full-time CEO and has nominees on its Board from the Central and State governments, as well as Urban Local Bodies (ULBs).

Reporting and Monitoring

  • The SCM is controlled by an Apex Committee chaired by the Secretary of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
  • The Real Time Geographical Management Information System (GMIS) is used by the committee to offer regular updates on project progress.

The mission’s characteristics

  • Smart Infrastructure: The improvement of urban systems such as transportation, water, and waste management.
  • E-Governance: Digital platforms for open government services and citizen participation.
  • Intelligent Solutions: The use of IoT and data analytics to optimise urban systems.
  • Green projects, renewable energy, and environmentally friendly practises are examples of sustainability.
  • Affordable housing, healthcare, and entrepreneurship are all examples of social and economic development.
  • Data-Driven Decision Making: Using data to plan and allocate resources based on evidence.

Progress status

(1) Funds Utilization

  • The Smart Cities Mission had received a total of 38,400 crore as of May 1.
  • 35,261 crore of this total has already been spent on various projects.
  • The use of funds accounts for more than 90% of the budgeted amount.

(2) Project Completion

  • The Smart Cities Mission encompasses approximately 7,800 projects, valued at ₹1.8 lakh crore.
  • Among these projects, more than 5,700, valued at ₹1.1 lakh crore, have been completed.
  • The remaining projects are expected to be completed by June 30, 2024.
  • Currently, only 22 out of the 100 designated cities have successfully concluded all projects under the mission.

@the end

By emphasizing effective funds utilization and project completion, the government intends to transform cities into smarter, more sustainable, and citizen-centric urban spaces.

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