Making Cities Secure, Accessible & Efficient: Prashant Chaudhary

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Prashant Chaudhary, Senior Director, Sales – State Government, CA Technologies

Creating Smart Cities is a herculean task, wherein the onus of finishing almost 98 percent of the work lies on the shoulders of the private sector, and that is where the private players will benefit from the project most, says Prashant Chaudhary, Senior Director, Sales – State Government, CA Technologies, in an interaction with Akanki Sharma of Elets News Network (ENN)

The Government of India has launched the ambitious 100 Smart Cities programme. What kind of potential does CA Technologies see in this?

If the government figures are to be believed, urban population in India is expected to rise by more than 400 million people and reach to 814 million by 2050. To handle this kind of influx on account of rapid urbanisation, the Government’s initiative to create 100 Smart Cities by 2022 is a timely step.

The concept of a Smart City goes way beyond the transactional relationships between citizens and service providers. It is essentially enabling and encouraging the citizen to become a more active and participative member of the community, like providing feedback on the quality of services or the state of roads and the built environment, adopting a more sustainable and healthy lifestyle, volunteering for social activities or supporting minority groups.

The government intends to accomplish the task through a public-private consensus, with the private sector finishing almost 98 per cent of it. Therefore, it opens a plethora of opportunities for not only the government but also the private sector. This is where players like us can pitch in.

What are the global solutions CA Technologies offers for developing a Smart City? How can those be implemented in India?

Our products and solutions can help make a city ‘Smart’ by making it Secure, Accessible and Efficient.

Our security solutions provide a complete identity and access management platform that enable this project to securely deliver new online services quickly across web, mobile and APIs, enable secure collaboration between governments and citizens, and protect key assets from insider threats and external attacks. These solutions also reduce the cost of security and compliance management.

In a Smart City, it is a must to have a secure IT Infrastructure. In fact, the Smart City computing environment is much more complex than others, as there are numerous users of various types. Then, increased mobility, heterogeneous IT users, disappearing perimeters, virtualisation, cloud computing, social networking, etc, add to the IT environment complexity. So, we now need fine-grained authorisation.

As for accessibility, success of a Smart City project depends on extent of the accessibility of public services to the citizens. Services depending on IT infrastructure need the resources to work fine and deliver as expected.

An efficient infrastructure management, along with integrated application monitoring, helps enable IT and service delivery teams to keep the utilisation rate high at lower cost.

Besides, 360-degree monitoring of infrastructure, application and services is compulsory to correlate and analyse information from infrastructure, application performance and other IT management tools in real time to accurately visualise public services, calculate service quality and to pinpoint what impacts quality and what puts it at risk.

In this context, capacity management solutions help maintain higher service levels across high-volume physical, virtual and cloud environments while helping to reduce capital expenditures and operating expenditures associated with hardware, software, power and cooling.

What according to you will be the challenges in the implementation of Smart City programme in India?

In a Smart City, there should be smooth flow of information apart from easy accessibility to basic amenities and services. So, in India, the Smart City project could take around a decade to reach fruition. In order to meet the desired deadline, clearances need to be issued at the earliest and this requires persistence and commitment on the part of the government. Moreover, the technology industry is undergoing constant changes with newer technologies coming into the foray and hence the government needs to be constantly in the loop about the same. The basic aim of the smart cities is to enable people to enjoy sustainable economic growth and high standards of living. This will require the community to actively participate in energy saving, implementation of new technologies and decisions to improve quality of life. For this, special programmes should be undertaken to educate the people in this direction. Another major challenge is the lack of skill sets and the need to train and develop a skilled workforce, which will consume a majority of the government’s finances and time.

Security Solutions
 Security solutions provide a complete identity and access management platform that enables a Smart City project to:

  • Securely deliver new online services quickly across Web, mobile, and APIs;
  • Securely collaborate between the Government and citizens;
  • Protect key assets from insider threats and external attacks; and
  • Reduce the cost of security and compliance management.

The products and solutions of CA Technologies can help make a city smart by making it Secure, Accessible and Efficient. Our security solutions protect key assets from insider threats and external attacks. These solutions also reduce the cost of security and compliance management

Are you looking at any partnerships for developing smart cities in India?

The Smart City initiative undertaken by the Government cannot be completed without involving private players like IT solution providers. CA Technologies works very closely with various state governments in the area of e-governance and other technology-based civic projects. To this end, Mobility, Cloud and analytics are the three platforms through which we are aiming to embark on our government run IT projects.

What is CA Technologies vision for a Smart City in India?

Although the definition of a Smart City is yet to fully evolve, a high-tech city must have adequate IT infrastructure for providing essential services to citizens at their doorsteps. There are many technological platforms involved, including automated sensor networks and data centres. Though this may sound futuristic, it is now likely to become a reality as the Smart City movement catches up in India. Without ICT, a Smart City cannot function properly, and there is constant need for monitoring the IT infrastructure. Every service in such a city, ranging from energy management, pollution control, traffic monitoring, parking area monitoring etc., depends on network and communication services, forming a digital interaction between citizens and services. The IT infrastructure is, therefore, required to be evaluated and monitored through a Control Centre. Our vision for a Smart City is to be fully equipped and we are constantly working towards developing systems that could help in integrating the same.

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