We Want To Create Smart Cities Without Creating Urban Mess: Hardeep Puri, Housing And Urban Affairs Minister
“We have two options. Either we follow the age-old bullock cart approach of town building process or we gear up and work towards building smart cities,” said the minister, speaking on the sidelines of the 5th edition of BW Businessworld Smart Cities Conclave 2017
India by 2030 would have more than 600 million people living in the urban areas that still remain to be built. In reference to this challenge, the Minister of State for Housing and Urban Affairs, Hardeep Puri termed the smart cities initiative as ‘not an option’ but an imperative.
“We have two options. Either we follow the age-old bullock cart approach of town building process or we gear up and work towards building smart cities,” said the minister, speaking on the sidelines of the 5th edition of BW Businessworld Smart Cities Conclave 2017.
With the idea and imperative of smart cities catching up, Puri also laid emphasis building smart cities that are sustainable and green. He made reference of urban buildings that creates 45% carbon footprint. Though building of smart cities is an imperative for the country, the minister stated a cautionary note on not building an urban mess.
“The smartness needs to be sustainable and green. In India, we have a rat race to build urban infrastructure and smart cities. This would no doubt attain the 2030 target, but with an urban mess. We need to address the challenges and work towards proper planning and implementation,” said Puri.
The minister mentions that the states are competitive in terms developing smart cities which make them more efficient.
“I see efficiency and enthusiasm amongst the authorities to come up with new ideas and technology for building smart cities,” said the minister.
He added that the country is on the cusp of the 4th industrial revolution with urban cities contributing a greater share to the GDP in terms of revenue, despite 60% population residing in rural areas.
“60% people reside in the rural areas and still contribute mere 15% to the GDP. There is definitely some problem in that aspect and the cost of that cannot come as a burden for the urban development,” mentioned the minister, stating the need to continue developing urban infrastructure.
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