In a move that can potentially change the city’s landscape, Centre has selected the two cities of Telangana ‘Hyderabad and Warangal’ to develop as smart cities after a competition that would award rankings to 100 cities, said Union Urban Development minister M Venkaiah Naidu here on Sunday.
The objective of the Mission is to meet the challenges of growing urbanisation in a sustainable manner and ensuring the benefits of urban development to the poor.
The Centre has sanctioned two smart cities and 15 Amruth cities to Telangana state based on urban population and other criteria along with guidelines on selecting candidate cities for the smart cities project.
Only 20 cities would be selected for development in the first phase based on the City Challenge Competition. The cities would be ranked according to their ability to achieve the objectives after receiving funds from the Centre, the minister told press persons.
As the competition progress, new cities would be added and some might get eliminated as well from the list. Thus, 40 cities each would be developed in second and third phases, reaching the target of 100 cities. Hence, mere presence of Hyderabad and Warangal does not ensure them to receive funds for the programme unless city civic bodies fulfil the criteria set by the Centre.
Venkaiah Naidu reiterated that the Centre was committed to develop all states regardless of political alignment. Hitting back at the Congress for alleging that the Modi government is discriminating non-BJP states, he said: “Some are airing baseless allegations. It is okay if the criticism is constructive. The Modi government believes in the spirit of federalism and wants to work with the states like team India.”