NEW DELHI, Nov 12
As the Smart Cities Mission approaches the June 2024 deadline, cities in Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan account for the top 10 in terms of completion of projects and financial progress, while UTs and cities in Northeastern States are in the lowest 10 of the 100, The Indian Express has learnt.
As per the Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry data as on November 3, about 22% of total projects (1,745 of 7,947) that account for 33% (Rs 57,028 crore of Rs 1.70 lakh crore) of the total cost are still ongoing. The majority of projects (6,202) have been completed, data shows. As of November 10, ministry data showed Surat (Gujarat) topped in terms of completion of projects, fund usage and other criteria, followed by Agra (UP), Ahmedabad (Gujarat), Varanasi (UP) and Bhopal (MP) in the top five. The rest of the top 10 include Tumakuru (Karnataka), Udaipur (Rajasthan), Madurai (TN), Kota (Rajasthan) and Shivamogga (Karnataka).
On the other hand, the UTs and Northeastern cities have continued to trail. The bottom 10 cities are Kavaratti (Lakshadweep), Puducherry, Port Blair (Andaman and Nicobar Islands), Imphal (Manipur), Shillong (Meghalaya), Diu, Guwahati (Assam), Aizawl (Mizoram), Gangtok (Sik-kim) and Pasighat (AP). Sources said this was due to lack of capacities in smaller cities. However, an official said the ongoing projects are likely to meet the June 2024 deadline. Launched in 2015, the Smart Cities Mission selected 100 cities through a competition in phases from January 2016 to June 2018. The selected cities were expected to finish all their proposed projects in five years from their selection. In May this year, the deadline for all cities was extended to June 2024. The Indian Express