New Delhi:The wait is finally over for Chandigarh, the joint capital of Punjab and Haryana to be developed into a smart city, with the City Beautiful finding a place in the list of 13 new smart cities released by the Central government on Tuesday. Lucknow in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh has topped the list, followed by Warangal in Telangana and Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh.
As many as 23 cities with the higher rankings from as many states and Union Territories, which failed to get representation in the first round of a competition held in January, participated in the ‘Fast Track Competition’, the result of which was announced by Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday. Of these 23 cities, only 13 could qualify for the smart city projects through the fresh competition. Other cities, which won this round, were Chandigarh, Raipur (Chhattisgarh), New Town Kolkata, Bhagalpur (Bihar), Panaji (Goa), Port Blair (Andaman and Nicobar Islands), Imphal (Manipur), Ranchi (Jharkhand), Agartala (Tripura) and Faridabad (Haryana).
“The 13 cities selected in the Fast Track Competition have proposed a total investment of Rs 30,229 crore. With this, the investment proposed by 33 cities (20 cities announced in January and 13 cities today) under the smart city plans is now Rs 80, 789 crore,” Naidu told a press conference. “Seven capital cities–Patna (Bihar), Shimla (Himachal Pradesh), Naya Raipur (Chhattisgarh), Itanagar (Arunachal Pradesh), Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh), Bengaluru (Karnataka) and Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala)–which were not included in the 100 cities shortlisted for the competition will be able to participate in the next round with other cities,” added Naidu.
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