The smart cities initiative of the Government seeks to ensure socio-economic inclusivity besides increasing economic opportunity by enhancing the ease of doing business, said Minister of Urban Development M Venkaiah Naidu.
Elaborating on the challenges and opportunities in building smart cities at a Conference on ‘100 Smart Cities : Need for Innovative and Integrated Approach’ organised by the Indian Chambers of Commerce, the smart cities would benefit the the most.
“The poor and the less endowed are deprived of equal right and access to public urban spaces. This need to be changed radically,” Naidu said. He also said that poor are the losers on account of weak urban planning and governance structures and smart cities seek to address these deficiencies.
Stating that innovative approaches are imperative for building smart cities, Naidu urged the corporates and investors to make a success of ‘People-Public-Private Partnership’ to meet the huge investment requirement.
He said that central government seeks to promote adoption of best practices followed elsewhere while evolving an India specific model.
Dr. Nandita Chatterjee, Secretary, Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation, said that Information and Communication Technologies would play a critical role in promoting smart practices, citizen participation and e-governance for better delivery of services.
Asserting that smart cities should offer economic and employment opportunities to a wider section of people, Dr. Chatterjee said that slum redevelopment, providing houses for all urban poor, skill development of urban poor for increased employment would address equity dimension of smart cities.