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Bhopal, Surat, Udaipur to be India’s first smart cities

Submitted by Tanveer Padode on May 6, 2022

Bhopal, Surat, Bhubaneswar, Udaipur, Ahmedabad, Varanasi and Indore are set to be declared India’s ‘first set of smart cities’ by the end of the year seven years after the launch of a flagship urban renewal mission to make 100 cities sustainable and citizen-friendly.

The Smart Cities Mission had been launched on June 25, 2015 to smarten up cities with eco-friendly hi-tech solutions to urban problems and is in its last year of implementation.

The mission period ends in June 2023. Of the 100 cities the seven to have taken a lead with the most projects completed are Bhopal which has completed 92 per cent of projects. Surat (82.44%), Udaipur (78%) and Bhubaneswar (76%), and Indore, Varanasi and Ahmedabad (70%).

The cities are expected to complete the remaining work by the year-end. In the final year of the mission the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs is concentrating on the bottom 40 cities facing implementation problems. The mission has faced severe criticism for the pace of project completion. However the ministry has maintained that big-ticket projects in cities were new ideas that took time in getting off the ground.