NEW DELHI: In a bid to expedite the process of identifying 100 smart cities and then developing it, Union Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Friday said the state governments have to take the lead, with the Centre playing only a supporting role.
“It is a new concept and very attractive, but not that easy to implement. We have to get the states on board,” said Naidu, adding, smart leadership and smart people are essential pre-requisites for making the cities smart.
He said after the draft Concept Note on Smart Cities is made public, it would be revisited on the basis of suggestions, views of the states and UTs.
He made it clear that the states which are willing to take smart and hard decisions alone will make the grade for the ambitious project.
He also said that many countries have shown interest in developing Smart Cities in India. “We have queries from Japan, Singapore, Sweden, Australia, Germany and the US. Lots of countries are showing interest in Smart Cities,” he told the conclave attended by the state ministers and representatives from the Union Territories.
The Smart Cities’ project is a long-term plan and expecting results overnight will be immature, Venkaiah said.