Prime Minister, Narendra Modi launched the flagship programme of his government, ‘Smart City mission’ in 20 cities across the country from Pune. Addressing a gathering in Pune for the event he said that we should not consider urbanisation as a problem, but consider it as an opportunity. He also asked to consider urbanisation as an opportunity to mitigate poverty. As the prime minister launched 14 smart city projects in Pune, and initiated 69 other works in other smart cities in the country, he made a plea for working in a comprehensive, inter-connected and vision-oriented manner and not in piece-meal. PM, Modi added that every city has a distinct identity and the country’s people “who are the smartest” should decide on how to develop urban spaces. Stressing that the spirit of participative governance is vital, he said people of the cities have to decide about the development of their urban spaces as these decisions cannot be taken by people sitting in Delhi. PM said smart cities should not be seen as a fancy concept since the mission is meant for ensuring availability of basic services to people though infrastructure including houses for urban poor in a comprehensive manner.
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