State today finalized a comprehensive blueprint based on the convergence of various development schemes for the Smart City Proposals of Amritsar and Jalandhar for round 2 of the Smart City Challenge of Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India. The detailed deliberations on Smart City proposals for round 2 of the Smart City challenge and of HRIDAY scheme of Amritsar were made during a review meeting taken by Mr. Sarvesh Kaushal, Chief Secretary Punjab with representatives of M/s JLL, M/s Tata Consulting Engineers Limited, M/s Townland (Consultants for Amritsar proposal) and M/s IIDC/UMTC/BDP(UK) (Consultants for Jalandhar proposal) and concerned officers from Local Government.Ludhiana has already been selected in the round one challenge and Ludhiana Special Purpose Vehicle has been registered for receiving the funds and for implementation of the Smart City Plan. All the development schemes LIKE SMART CITY, HRIDAY, PRASAD, AMRUT, DIGITAL INDIA, SKILL DEVELOPMENT, HOUSING FOR ALL will converge and funds from these schemes will be optimally utilized for overall development of these cities said Mr. Kaushal.
During the first round, Amritsar was ranked 25th and Jalandhar was ranked 27th in the Country. Round 2 of the Challenge (2016-17) has already begun and detailed proposals by 54 cities including Jalandhar and Amritsar will be submitted by 30th June 2016. The 23 cities which are required to upgrade their proposals and which do not meet the benchmark set by the winning cities; will also join the challenge of main Round 2. Amritsar city has also been selected under HRIDAY (Heritage Development and Augmentation Yojana) scheme of Government of India. In the first phase, a total Rs 69 crores will be spent. One of the most important projects that got the sanction was the comprehensive road development and upgradation of 21 major roads leading to the Golden Temple. Chief Secretary directed the HRIDAY scheme consultants to finalize the proposal by 20th May 2016.
The Amritsar round 2 proposal included Area Based Development with focus on Integral Parking Management, Installation of Street cameras, LED based lamps, integrated Tourist Assistance Center, effective drainage system, Solid Waste Management, Carbon emissions, solar panels etc. The main focus area shall be the convergence of various schemes like AMRUT, Digital India Programme, HRIDAY scheme, PRASAD Scheme (Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual Augmentation Drive), Skill Development, Swachh Bharat Mission, Housing of all etc. The Pan City proposals include Intelligent Traffic Management System, IP based Video Surveillance System, Variable Message Signboards etc. Smart city proposals of round 2 include City Profile, Area Based Proposal, Pan City proposal, Implementation plan, financial plans including resource planning, operations and maintenance, financial timelines etc. Chief Secretary directed the Secretary Local Government to have meeting with M/s Wapcos consultant AMRUT scheme with Smart City consultants for better convergence of both the schemes.
While reviewing the Smart City proposals of both the cities, Chief Secretary directed both the consultants to make the proposal stronger by incorporation of relevant new plans and schemes, by reviewing all State and Central Government policies/programmes to make maximum convergence, by reworking the financial streams and also by incorporating the best practices of 20 winning cities. To improve citizen awareness, special awareness campaigns will be launched in schools, colleges, universities of the State so that students can provide feedback on various aspects of the Smart City proposals of the cities.Chief Secretary directed Deputy Commissioners of both the cities to have weekly meetings with the concerned departments and consultants so that effective convergence of various schemes can be achieved. He also directed the Consultants of Smart City Project, HRIDAY Consultants to have joint meeting to come up with comprehensive proposals to effectively utilize both the schemes. Chief Secretary further suggested that Amritsar being border city, it should be portrayed as a hub for international trade. In the end, Chief Secretary directed both the Smart City consultants to submit the proposals by 15th June.The meeting was attended by Mr. Vikas Pratap Singh, Secretary Local Government, Mr. J Balamurugan , CEO PMIDC, Ms. Gurmeet Rai director of the Cultural Resource Conservation Initiative ( associated with Hriday Project), representatives from M/s JLL, M/s Tata Consulting Engineers, M/s Townland, M/s IIDC etc.