UP Wins Big At Smart Cities Conclave, Varanasi, Agra Bag Top Honours
These smart cities were felicitated at the the-two day India Smart City Conclave 2023, organised by the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs at the Brilliant Convention Centre in Indore, Madhya Pradesh, that concluded with an award ceremony on Wednesday graced by President Droupadi Murmu
In a major accomplishment for the Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government, the state has been ranked 3rd in the country in terms of ‘Smart Cities’. Agra has emerged as the third smartest city in the country while the state has received 10 awards in different categories.
These smart cities were felicitated at the the-two day India Smart City Conclave 2023, organised by the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs at the Brilliant Convention Centre in Indore, Madhya Pradesh, that concluded with an award ceremony on Wednesday graced by President Droupadi Murmu.
President Murmu presented the ‘Third Best State Award’ to UP. On behalf of the state government, Principal Secretary Urban Development Department Amrit Abhijat, and Smart City Mission Director Dharmendra Pratap Singh received the award.
A contest was organised by the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs in various categories among 100 smart cities of the country last year, in which Agra managed to secure a place in the top three.
It may be mentioned here under the direction of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, efforts to make all municipal corporations, not only smart cities, but also safe cities are in progress. This includes the establishment of Integrated Command and Control Centers, various IT components, CCTV systems, and the provision of essential facilities and services for women, the elderly, differently-abled individuals, and children. The results of these efforts are becoming evident on the ground.
In the ranking of smart cities, two cities from UP, Agra and Varanasi, consistently remain among the top 10 cities, and three cities, Agra, Varanasi, and Kanpur, are consistently in the top 20 cities.
The state got awarded in different categories which included Uttar Pradesh securing third position in the ‘Best State’ category, Agra Smart City clinched the third position nationwide in the ‘National Smart City Award’ category, Varanasi Smart City secured the first position in the ‘City Awards’ category among smart cities with a population of over 10 lakh in the North Zone, Kanpur got third place in the ‘Project Awards’ category under ‘Built Environment, for the modernisation and development work of the Palika Sports Stadium, Lucknow secured third position for employment training centre work in economy category.
In the ‘ICCC Sustainable Model’ category, Agra Smart City secured the third position for revenue generation and reducing carbon emissions through the Centralised Command and Control Centre. Agra got second place in the ‘Social Aspect’ category for the upgradation of Smart Health Centre and Municipal School. The smart city also secured Second place for Smart Water Meter in ABD area and 24x7 water supply by SCADA. Agra further received the third place in the ‘Covid Innovation Award’ category for its various innovative initiatives during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Varanasi Smart City was awarded the Best City Award in the North Zone (with a population of more than 10 lakh) in the India Smart City Award Contest.
This prestigious award was received by Chief Executive Officer, Varanasi Smart City Sipu Giri.
Under the Smart City Mission, Varanasi has been selected for this award on the basis of timely implementation of projects, financial sustainability, success story, utility of projects, efficient public participation and feedback system.
Chief General Manager, Varanasi Smart City, Dr. D. Vasudevan termed this award as an honour for all the people of Kashi and said that this modern confluence with the supernatural and spiritual form of Varanasi is giving rise to the development of Kashi.
Divisional Commissioner/Chairman, Varanasi Smart City Kaushal Raj Sharma expressed happiness over this achievement and while congratulating all the residents of Kashi, he said that this is a matter of pride for all of us, we are ready for the all-round development of the city under Varanasi Smart City in the future also.
Under the Smart City Mission, 10 cities of the state include Agra, Aligarh, Bareilly, Jhansi, Kanpur, Lucknow, Moradabad, Prayagraj, Saharanpur, and Varanasi. A total of 670 projects are proposed in these cities including smart roads, smart parking, parks, water bodies, and better civic amenities such as sanitation, water supply, street lighting, and sewerage.
The estimated cost of these projects is Rs 9313.45 crore. So far, 456 projects valued at Rs 5889.14 crore have been successfully completed, while 214 projects with a total expenditure of Rs 3424.31 crore are currently in progress. Notably, Agra, Kanpur, Varanasi, and Jhansi have received their full funding allocation, while Lucknow, Bareilly, Prayagraj, and Aligarh are yet to receive their final instalments.