Urban Transformation – Smart Cities, AMRUT, etc.

73% projects completed under Smart Cities Mission


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Smart Cities Mission

Mains level: Urban transformation initiatives

Smart Cities Mission

Central Idea

  • The Union Urban Affairs Ministry announced that significant progress has been made under the Smart Cities Mission, with more than 90% of the allocated funds being utilized and 73% of the projects already completed.

Why discuss this?

  • The projects were supposed to be completed within five years of the selection of the city.
  • However, in 2021 the Ministry changed the deadline for all cities to June 2023, which was earlier the deadline for Shillong alone.

What is Smart Cities Mission?

  • The Smart Cities Mission is an initiative of the Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry that was launched by PM on June 25, 2015.
  • Cities across the country were asked to submit proposals for projects to improve municipal services and to make their jurisdictions more liveable.
  • Between January 2016 and June 2018 (when the last city, Shillong, was chosen), the Ministry selected 100 cities for the Mission over five rounds.

How does it work?

  • Each smart city has created a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) responsible for planning, appraising, approving, releasing funds, implementing, and managing, operating, monitoring, and evaluating development projects.
  • The SPV is led by a full-time CEO and includes nominees from the Central and State governments, as well as the Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) on its Board.

Monitoring and Reporting

  • The implementation of the SCM is overseen by an Apex Committee, led by the Secretary of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
  • The committee utilizes the Real Time Geographical Management Information System (GMIS) to provide regular reports on project progress.

Features of the mission

  • Smart Infrastructure: Upgrading urban systems, including transportation, water, and waste management.
  • E-Governance: Digital platforms for transparent government services and citizen engagement.
  • Smart Solutions: Integration of IoT and data analytics to optimize urban systems.
  • Sustainability: Green initiatives, renewable energy, and eco-friendly practices.
  • Social and Economic Development: Affordable housing, healthcare, and fostering entrepreneurship.
  • Data-Driven Decision Making: Utilizing data for evidence-based planning and resource allocation.

Progress status

(1) Funds Utilization

  • As of May 1, a total of ₹38,400 crore was released for the Smart Cities Mission.
  • Out of this amount, ₹35,261 crore has already been utilized for various projects.
  • The utilization of funds accounts for over 90% of the allocated budget.

(2) Project Completion

  • The Smart Cities Mission encompasses approximately 7,800 projects, valued at ₹1.8 lakh crore.
  • Among these projects, more than 5,700, valued at ₹1.1 lakh crore, have been completed.
  • The remaining projects are expected to be completed by June 30, 2024.
  • Currently, only 22 out of the 100 designated cities have successfully concluded all projects under the mission.


  • By emphasizing effective funds utilization and project completion, the government intends to transform cities into smarter, more sustainable, and citizen-centric urban spaces.


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