Industry News
In the first step towards implementation of the Narendra Modi government's plan to build 100 smart cities, the Confederation of Indian Industry on Tuesday inked pacts with global technology firms Siemens and HitachiBSE 1.87 %. Under the agreement, the industry led consortia will spearhead the conceptualisation and implementation of pilot projects in smart cities. 

CII has set up a 'National Mission on Smart Cities', a consortium comprising industry leaders and experts to provide policy advocacy and thought leadership to government and other stakeholders. The memorandums of understanding or MoUs are part of the implementation strategy to take the initiative on smart cities forward. "The smart city initiative shall be driven by technology driven companies. Learnings gathered from the best practices across the world in the management of water, public resources, public spaces and technology etc shall be shared while implementing the smart cities concept in India," said the department of industrial policy and promotion secretary Amitabh Kant. 

The National Mission will begin by working on three pilot projects. "The Mission would like to focus on three pilots to begin with, which can be internalised and used as a common template for scalability," said Ravi Parthasarathy, chairman, IL&FS, who is heading the National Mission. 

A smart city development involves components such as transportation, infrastructure for employment, responsive public services, information and communications technology, etc. "Siemens has the portfolio, the know-how and the expertise to help cities become more liveable, more competitive and more sustainable," said Sunil Mathur, managing director and chief executive officer of Siemens. The government wants to develop 100 smart cities by 2022. However, in the budget for 2015-16, it has allocated just Rs 143.05 crore for the project, down from Rs 7,016 crore in 2014-15.

(This news story is from The Economic Times)
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