Nagpur Leading The Smart City Mission

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ramnath sonawane ias

Nagpur, a Maharashtrian city selected in the third round of Smart City Mission, is implementing its area based development and pan city solutions through a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), created for the smart city project. Ramnath Sonawane, Additional Municipal Commissioner and CEO SPV, in conversation with Elets News Network (ENN) tells us more of it.

How do you rate the progress of smart city project in Nagpur as compared to other smart cities of Maharashtra?

Nagpur was selected in the second round of smart city mission. It is far ahead in terms of implementation of smart city projects. We are trying to complete various projects before the results of second round of Smart City Mission are declared. Maharashtra IT Corporation is actually implementing the Smart and Safe City project in Nagpur under which pan city solutions envisaged by the corporation are being installed.

We are proud to say that as per one of the survey conducted by the Urban Development Ministry, Nagpur has topped the list of implementation of smart city projects in the smart cities, well ahead of cities which were chosen before it. Will you throw some light on the various components of

Will you throw some light on the various components of smart city?

There are two components of smart city project. First, area wise development and second, pan city solutions – which again have two components- Unified Command and Control Centre, which will be operated by police department in order to control and detect crime across the city. Further, we will also set up a city operation centre, which will be operated by Municipal Corporation. We plan to use ICT platform to provide various services to the citizens. With the ICT platform, we want to provide all the services to citizens at their doorstep. We are very focused on providing e-governance solutions to our citizens and later, d-governance.

How has demonetisation affected your operations?

The demonetisation move has proved to be good for Nagpur Municipal Corporation. Initially, the move has helped us increase our revenue as we could collect due taxes from citizens easily. We are encouraging people to go cashless and use ICT platform to interact with government. We had actually started implementing e-governance project for our municipal corporation in 2003– 2004. We have well-trained IT savvy staff at NMC. We have strong IT infrastructure. We have so far developed more than 60 modules which have been used significantly.

“We have welltrained IT savvy staff at NMC. We have strong IT infrastructure. We have so far developed more than 60 modules which have been used significantly.”

The corporation is also mulling to link and integrate our system with Aadhaar number and strengthen digital governance.

How are you ensuring the safety of Nagpur citizens?

As we discussed earlier, we are in the process of setting unified command and control centre in Nagpur under the smart city project at the police headquarters. We have identified 700 locations where about 4,000 CCTV cameras will be installed across the city. These cameras will be connected with all the police stations so that all can access the input. This will help us bring the entire city area under CCTV surveillance and control the crimes.

The work includes installation of 3,000 CCTVs at 700 locations, wi-fi service at all major locations, payment gateway kiosks at 136 locations, 500km optical fibre cables etc. These works have been conceptualised under different heads like city network backbone, city wi-fi, city kiosk, city surveillance and smart strip.

How effectively has the smart transportation implemented in the city?

We are implanting intelligent transport system across the city. The Municipal Corporation has its own transport undertaking. We have recently upgraded our fleet and now have three types of buses which are operated with diesel, CNG and battery. Further, we are in the process of installing GPS system in buses so that the corporation can monitor them. The commuters will also get message alerts on the location of their buses. They will be able to trace their desired buses. We will also install display boards at bus shelters indicating arrival time of buses and available number of seats. We are also in the process of designing a system which allows parents to locate their children in the buses.

Smart City Nagpur What is your strategy to execute the smart city plan?

We have also established a Special Purpose Vehicle-Nagpur Smart and Sustainable City Development Corporation. This body independently takes decisions to implement various projects. We are also in the process of appointing a project management unit to streamline the entire smart city project. We have almost finalised an agency to prepare town planning schemes. We have chosen three areas including Bardi and Bharat Pada for these schemes.

Agence Francaise de Developement (French Development Agency) has been appointed to give technical and financial assistance to NMC. Also, NMC had established special purpose vehicle — Nagpur Smart and Sustainable City Development Corporation Limited — with 15 directors on its board. Therefore, the SPV can begin execution of development works worth Rs 3,577.77 crore proposed under the smart city plan.

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