Nagpur municipality seeks FICCI aid to get ‘Smart City’ project

Nagpur municipality seeks FICCI aid to get Smart City project

Tough criteria set by the union government may make it difficult for Nagpur city to find a place in PM Narendra Modi's pet project, the 'Smart Cities' programme. However, the general body on Monday approved a proposal by the administration to nominate Nagpur city for the Smart City competition.

Mayor Pravin Datke, however, refused to comment about NMC's financial preparedness for the project. He said the civic body will rope in Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) for help. In fact, a FICCI team will visit the city to facilitate the city's claim to be a part of the Smart City scheme, which will include sustainable development under AMRUT and Housing For All proposals.

"Apart from its study on NMC's financial viability to participate in the project, the FICCI team will coordinate with various stakeholders including NIT and NMC," said Datke.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has invited proposals from municipal corporations to take part in the 'Smart Cities' project. The union government had recently convened a meeting with state representatives and other stakeholders in New Delhi to decide on the criteria for selecting and ranking cities. With the passing of the proposal, the civic body will now send its nomination to Maharashtra government informing about its readiness to take part in the Smart City project.

While it is not known how much the detailed project report (DPR) will cost, NMC will have to spend Rs 250cr annually if selected. The mayor's claim notwithstanding, the city's chances of qualifying for the ambitious scheme appear dim.

The GB also gave its nod to a proposal to provide financial help to families that don't have toilets. Under Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, the central and state governments are supposed to provide Rs 4,000 and Rs 8,000 respectively to construct toilets for such families. If the cost of the toilets exceeds this amount, the difference will be shared by NMC and the beneficiaries.

Source: The Times of India

Smart Grid Bulletin February 2019

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