Infrastructure News

Smart Cities Mission’s Ph-2 should focus on Tier-2 cities near capitals, ‘tourist cities’: Panel, ET Infra

NEW DELHI: The government should launch the second phase of the Smart Cities Mission (SCM) with a thrust on Tier-2 cities located between 50 and 100 kilometers from capitals and “tourist cities”, a parliamentary committee has suggested. It also said that in view of digital infrastructure being created in 100 cities under the mission, there is a need to set up a robust system to protect digital platforms from cyber attacks and ensure that sensitive public and private data is adequately protected and safeguarded.

In its report tabled in the Lok Sabha, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Housing and Urban Affairs also recommended that the Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry get the third party assessment of various projects undertaken in the Smart Cities Mission.

“The committee is of the opinion that the experience and expertise gained by the SPVs in urban development initiatives must be leveraged and possibility should be explored for utilising their expertise in other projects, such as AMRUT, DAYNULM etc. undertaken for the growth and development of cities and sub-urban areas/satellite towns/growth centres around the city or elsewhere,” the panel said in its report.

The Narendra Modi government launched its flagship Smart Cities Mission (SCM) on June 25, 2015, and 100 cities were selected for redevelopment through a two-stage competition from January 2016 to June 2018.

In its report, the committee, chaired by JD(U) MP Rajiv Ranjan Singh, suggested that the next phase of the mission be launched with a thrust on Tier-2 cities located between 50 and 100 kilometers from capital cities and tourist cities.

The committee in its report appreciated the steps taken under the SCM for digital infrastructure such as Integrated Command and Control Centers (ICCCs), Adaptive Traffic Control System (ATCS), Red Light Violation Detection (RLVD), Automatic Number Plate Recognition System (ANPR), digital assets for solid waste and waste-water management and water distribution management, CCTV surveillance systems, smart education and smart health systems.

However, the same is expected to generate and use large volumes of data from varied digital sources. This necessitates putting in place a mechanism to protect digital infrastructure and smart solutions from cyber attacks, theft or threat, it said.

“The committee, therefore, recommends that a robust system should be put in place to protect digital platforms from cyber attack and to ensure that sensitive public and private data is adequately protected and safeguarded,” it said.

The parliamentary panel also said that larger cities having efficient organisational and financial structure like Surat, Agra, Ahmedabad, Bhopal, Varanasi, Madurai, Pune, Indore, Jaipur and others have performed well.

However, progress of the mission is slow in many small cities including those in north-eastern states, it said.

  • Published On Feb 9, 2024 at 08:23 AM IST

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