Union Minister of Urban Development Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday announced the first 20 smart cities out of 97 that will be funded and developed by the Centre. The cities are Bhubaneswar, Pune, Jaipur, Surat, Kochi, Ahmedabad, Jabalpur, Visakhapatnam, Solapur, Davangere, Indore, New Delhi, Coimbatore, Kakinada, Belgaum, Udaipur, Guwahati, Chennai, Ludhiana and Bhopal.
Naidu said the first 20 smart cities were selected on the basis of feasibility, smartness of the proposal and performance indicators among other factors. In terms of population, these 20 cities account for 3.54 crore people, he added. A total investment of Rs 50,802 crore has been proposed in the selected smart cities and towns during a five-year period. As many as 1.5 crore citizens participated in the preparation of smart city plans at various stages, Naidu said.
The selected cities will be developed to have basic infrastructure, including water and power supply, sanitation management, efficient public transport, e-governance and IT connectivity. The cabinet had approved the smart cities plan in 2015. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced that there will be smart cities in every state, with Uttar Pradesh getting the most, at 13. Each state will have a number of smart cities depending on its size, population, and other factors.