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4 cities from BJP-ruled states feature in new list of Smart Cities

The government on Tuesday announced the names of 13 more cities that will be developed under the Centre’s ‘Smart City Mission’ with Lucknow in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh topping the list, followed by Warangal in Telangana and Dharmashala in Himachal Pradesh.

4 cities from BJP-ruled states feature in new list of Smart Cities
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Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu

New Delhi

Twenty-three cities with the higher rankings from as many states and Union territories, which failed to get representation in the first round of a competition held in January, participated in the ‘Fast Track Competition’, the result of which was announced by Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday. Of these 23 cities, only 13 could qualify for the Smart City projects through the fresh competition.

Other cities, which won this round, were Chandigarh, Raipur (Chhattisgarh), New Town Kolkata, Bhagalpur (Bihar), Panaji (Goa), Port Blair (Andaman and Nicobar Islands), Imphal (Manipur), Ranchi (Jharkhand), Agartala (Tripura) and Faridabad (Haryana).

“The 13 cities selected in the Fast Track Competition have proposed a total in vestment of Rs 30,229 crore. With this, the investment proposed by 33 cities (20 cities announced in January and 13 cities on Tuesday) under the Smart City plans is now Rs 80,789 crore,” Naidu told a press conference.

Of 13 cities that qualified for the Smart City project on Tuesday, four are from BJP ruled states of Chhattisgarh, Goa, Jharkhand and Haryana, while two are from Congress-governed states of Himachal Pradesh and Manipur. Lucknow is in Samajwadi Party-ruled Uttar Pradesh, while Bhagalpur is in Bihar, where JD(U), RJD and Congress are ruling coalition partners, and Warangal is in Telangana ruled by Telangana Rashtra Samithi.

New Town Kolkata in West Bengal, where TMC came back to power in the recently held Assembly election, and Agartala in CPI(M)-ruled Tripura, were also selected for the Smart City project. Apart from these, Union Territories of Chandigarh and Port Blair in Andaman and Nicobar Islands were among the winners of this round. Each Smart City will be given Central assistance of Rs 200 crore in the first year and Rs 100 crore each during the subsequent three financial years.

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