Smart Cities Mission in India to develop 100 smart cities

smart cities missionThe Smart Cities Mission is an innovative Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS) to drive economic growth and improve the quality of life of people by enabling local development and harnessing technology as a means to create smart outcomes for citizens. The Central Government proposed to provide financial support to the Mission to the tune of Rs. 48,000 crores over five. The Mission will cover 100 cities and its duration will be five years (FY2015-16 to FY2019-20). The scheme is administered by Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India.

Why Smart Cities Mission?

As per Census 2011, cities accommodate nearly 31% of India’s population and contribute 63% of GDP. Urban areas are expected to house 40% of India’s population and contribute 75% of India’s GDP by 2030. This requires comprehensive development of physical, institutional, social and economic infrastructure. These are important in improving the quality of life and attracting people and investment, setting in motion a virtuous cycle of growth and development.


The objective is to promote cities that provide core infrastructure and give a decent quality of life to its citizens, a clean and sustainable environment and application of ‘Smart’ Solutions. The focus is on sustainable and inclusive development and the idea is to look at compact areas, create a replicable model which will act like a light house to other aspiring cities.

Core infrastructure facilities under the mission

The core infrastructure elements in a smart city would include:

  • Adequate water supply,
  • Assured electricity supply,
  • Sanitation, including solid waste management,
  • Efficient urban mobility and public transport,
  • Affordable housing, especially for the poor,
  • Robust IT connectivity and digitalization,
  • Good governance, especially e-Governance and citizen participation,
  • Sustainable environment,
  • Safety and security of citizens, particularly women, children and the elderly,
  • Health and education.

Smart Cities Mission Strategy

The strategy to implement the mission is categories into two parts:

  1. Pan-city initiative in which at least one Smart Solution is applied city-wide
  2. Area based development models: The areas are developed step by step. There are three models under this approach:
    • Retrofitting: In this model an existing built area greater than 500 acres are developed to make it more efficient and livable.
    • Redevelopment: Under this model of development, an existing area of more than 50 acres are replaced to enable creation of new layout especially enhanced infrastructure, mixed land use and increased density.
    • Greenfield: Under this model , a vacant area of more than 250 acres is developed using innovative planning, plan financing and plan implementation tools with provision for affordable housing, especially for the poor

Exam Tips

  1. Smart Cities Mission is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme
  2. Financial outlay committed by Government of India – Rs 48,000 crore
  3. No of cities targeted – 100
  4. Duration of mission – 5 years (FY2015-16 to FY2019-20)
  5. Implementing ministry – Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India
  6. Shillong became 100th Smart City.
  7. In FY 2021–22, Rs 6,450 crore has been allocated for the Smart Cities

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