India's new cities may soon boast of several smart features like IT-enabled transport and carbon neutral status.
"Under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission Phase-II, every state will have atleast one smart city," Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath said in an interactive session at the 85th Annual General Meeting of FICCI.
He said the new cities, particularly those with population of half a million to one million, will have a host of information technology enabled services, like transport and other utilities.
For better planning of cities, Nath also mooted creation of a special municipal cadre to ensure that local bodies have dedicated staff to carry out plans specific to the urban areas.
The Minister observed that in some towns a veterinary doctor was being asked to manage a municipality, an area of which he had no clue.
He said in JNNURM-II, the Centre was considering giving grants to only those states who establish a municipal service.
Currently, in the absence of a dedicated cadre, municipal bodies are borrowing services of other administrative services on deputation basis, which could be changed if the local bodies have their own cadre.
To a question on Kochi Metro, Nath said the people of Kochi have to decide who they want to build the metro rail in their city.
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation will provide all the support to Kochi Metro, But Kochi Metro has to build itself, the Minister said adding that he was surprised to see people of Kerala wanting DMRC to do the job.
"In any case, they must take a decision. Whichever way they want it, we will do it," Nath said.