GUWAHATI, July 5 – A smart city should be one that places the cultural development of a city as its central theme and ensures that citizens have an access to all facilities in a smart manner, said VK Pipersenia while inaugurating the North East Smart City Conclave organised by the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) here on Saturday. He stressed on the need to place the focus on a city’s inherent strengths while devising models of development to ensure that the city grows into a place where all citizens can co-exist in a surrounding that fosters brotherhood and peace. He noted that it has become almost impossible to predict accurately the migration numbers from rural to urban centers and therefore the necessity to develop urban centers into smart cities is indeed the call of the hour.
Speaking on the occasion Dhiren Baruah, chairman of GMDA said it was his desire to develop Guwahati as a smart city and expressed confidence that Guwahati would qualify Stage-I of the competition for selection of Smart City aspirants under the newly launched programme of the Union Ministry of Urban Development.
Congratulating ICC for having taken up the initiative of conducting the North East Smart City Conclave at such an appropriate time, he hoped the deliberations by the experts would result in tangible outcomes to provide solutions to develop Guwahati as Assam’s first smart city, said a statement.
The founder director, Smart Cities Council of India, Pratap Padode while speaking on the occasion highlighted that while 65 per cent of India’s GDP was contributed by its cities, only 0.6 per cent of it was invested back for the development of infrastructure in those cities. “It is therefore imperative to devise means and sources for the development of cities,” he said.
Dignitaries from Canadian Trade Commission, WIPRO, Deloitte, European Business and Technology Centre, OIL India Ltd, TATA Communications Ltd., Clearford India Pvt. Ltd. and other Government representatives like Deputy Commissioner, Tinsukia, senior technical director, NIC Assam and Secretary, Transport, Environment and Forests, Government of Assam addressed the gathering on smart planning for urban and suburban North East and smart and sustainable development models for the region, added the statement. The conclave was attended by various Government and non-government agencies, civil society groups, urban developers and planners and technology providers.