Written by Chanda Malviya
Urban transformation and the concept of smart cities is a global phenomenon, and India is currently witnessing rapid urbanisation, which comes with its share of problems. Chandigarh being a key region in North India is facing various challenges in its pursuit of urban transformation.
This was the general drift at the summit on urban transformation at a hotel here on Wednesday. The event focused on topics like urban mobility, urban planning, security and surveillance and waste management.
The inaugural session discussed the concept of digitized smart city, redefining services through enhanced connectivity, mobility and resilient infrastructure. Kamal Kishore Yadav, Commissioner, Chandigarh Municipal Corporation gave the welcome address. “Sector 17 is the heart, green belts the lungs and roads are the circulatory system of Chandigarh,” said Kamal Kishore Yadav while talking about Chandigarh and its structure.
DGP Sanjay Baniwal emphasised the importance of smart solutions and security and surveillance. The DGP talked about E-Sathi app and emergency response support system number 112. “The cops deployed have been provided with GPS-enabled bikes to track their movements, under the E-beat book system,” said DGP. He also talked about safe transportation facilities for women.
Jaspal Singh, Prinicipal Secretary, Department of Planning, Government of Punjab, talked about the issue of migration in Chandigarh. He said it is important to focus on sustainable development and environmental issues such as climate change while forming development policies. He encouraged the use of clean energies.”If we exhaust all the resources what will happen to our children and grandchildren,” he asked.
Shin Bongkill, Ambassador of South Korea to India, was also one of the speakers. He observed that the growth of Indian cities is not the same for all sections. “Great structures are not available to the common people,” said Shin Bongkill. He said that the roads are not pedestrian friendly and unsafe for people on bicycles. “It is important to construct dedicated bike and passenger walkways in every city.’’
At the end of the session, all the guests were honoured and prizes were distributed to state government initiatives for improving infrastructure. Chandigarh Smart City Ltd. bagged an award for their legacy waste project and clean city. Chandigarh Municipal Corporation won smart and sustainable infrastructure award for 100% LED street lights. Department of Governance Reform, Punjab, bagged the award for excellence in E-governance for the E-Office project. Mohali Municipal Corporation received an award for replacement of street lights with LED lights and central monitoring system. Betul district administration bagged an award for their rainwater harvesting project for urban water conservation through innovation. Mohali Municipal Corporation was awarded for the mechanical sweeping project.
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