Centre’s plan of smart cities has tunnel vision: Experts
More urbanisation and expansion of cities will eat into the agricultural land around the city's fringes which is quite evident in Pune city
Aug 19, 2014
Source : The Times of India
smart city

 

 

PUNE: The Union government's plan to build 100 smart cities across the country will lead to conversion of thousands of acres of farmland into commercial and residential establishments, said experts.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government plans such cities across the country with GIS (Geographic Information Systems)-based town planning. Plans are to use the latest technology and infrastructure, integrated waste management and advanced transport system for the proposed cities. According to the government's plan, these sustainable cities with modern facilities will enable the Centre to catch up with the expected transition that forecasts about 59 crore people living in urban areas in the next two decades.

"The government needs to explain its smart city concept. So far, it is obvious that more urbanisation and expansion of cities will eat into the agricultural land around the city's fringes which is quite evident in Pune city. The fringes are rapidly losing their green cover. Also, the government is yet to answer who will benefit from such cities," said Ulka Mahajan, activist and convener of Anti-globalization Action Committee (AAC).

The Centre has defended its plan saying that studies have projected that nearly 70% of the new employment will be generated in cities by 2025-30. The BJP's manifesto has claimed it 'will look at urbanisation as an opportunity rather than a threat'. According to the 2011 census, 32 per cent (377 million) of the country's population live in urban areas as against 28 per cent in 2001 and 17 per cent in 1991. But activists said the government's explanation is not sufficient. "What will be the place of farmers and poor in these cities and what is the government going to do with them?" asked Mahajan.

"The government plans to create infrastructure in new cities, but is there no assurance that farmers who will lose their lands will get their share in the urbanised surroundings. Also, the government needs to declare how much agricultural land the country needs under cultivation and on how much land does it want to create cities and industrial corridors," said Mahajan.

Activist Suniti Su Ra alleged that the government is promoting interests of the corporate world. "The government has made its priorities very clear and it wants to speed up the land acquisition process. We have to redefine idea of India and to whom this nation belongs," she said.

The Environment Status Report (ESR) of the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) for 2013-14 has confirmed what environmentalists and experts have said all along — expanding the city limits would strain Pune's infrastructure and in turn lead to serious environmental degradation.

Latest Realty News

From joy rides to high-street outlets, Ghansoli’s Central Park to have it all
Aug 19, 2014
The Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) is set to develop a theme-based Central Park in Savali village, Ghansoli
Indians top investor in Dubai's real estate market
Aug 19, 2014
Indians have been ranked first among foreign investors in Dubai's real estate sector, making a total of 4,417 transactions worth nearly USD 3 billion in the first half of the year, according to an official report.
Builders expect home sales to pick up, line up schemes to woo customers
Aug 19, 2014
For a few years now, the usually peak festival season hasn't been a time of joy for the housing business, but this year builders are hopeful of a revival after the Narendra Modi-led BJP swept to power in Delhi and business sentiment improved
Cities With Highest Property Prices: Mumbai Tops The List
Aug 18, 2014
With the rise in urbanization, many people in India now rush towards urban areas to settle down. And as such, property rates in major Indian cities are witnessing sharp rise between June 2012 and May 2014, according to data by real estate firm research firm PropEquity.
Pharande Spaces launches township project in Pune
Aug 16, 2014
Real estate firm Pharande Spaces launched a luxury township project -- Puneville -- at Pune in Maharashtra
Donald Trump: 'India's real estate market will pick up'
Aug 16, 2014
In the world of luxury property there are few more famous faces than Donald Trump - the multi-billionaire who built his fortune through New York real estate.
India real estate funds look to raise $1 bn from overseas
Jul 29, 2014
Indian real estate-focused private equity (PE) funds are hoping to raise around $1 billion from overseas investors, two people familiar with the matter said. Last year, realty funds managed to mop up close to $370 million from international markets, data from VCCEdge shows. Among the key realty funds that are in the market for money include Red Fort Capital, ASK Group, HDFC Property Fund and JP Morgan, these people said.
Realty, infra gain as RBI signals cheaper loans to priority sector
Jul 16, 2014
Shares of real estate and infrastructure companies are trading higher by up to 6% after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said banks would not have to maintain cash reserve ratio (CRR) or statutory liquidity ratio (SLR) and will not have to meet priority-sector lending targets for funds raised through bonds for extending credit to these sectors.
Investment-friendly budget to spur real estate growth (Comment: Special to IANS)
Jul 13, 2014
MUMBAI: The 2014-15 budget is both positive and promising that focuses on reviving the sentiment of property buyers and investors and promoting investment with a view to give fillip to construction and housing sector, a significant contributor to GDP.
REITs may fetch $10 billion this fiscal itself: Experts
Jul 13, 2014
MUMBAI: Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), which now seems to be a reality, is likely to net a whopping $10 billion this fiscal itself, thus providing the much-needed funds to the cash-starved developers, say industry experts.

Latest Realty News Of State

Realty Talk's