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Manthan Topic -FutureCities: Ensuring world class civic amenities in urban India
Financial inclusion: A bridge that refuses to be built
We All Can’t Be Stars,
But We All Can Twinkle.
All civic amenities will be ensured if India achieve inclusive growth to prevent
the gap between rich and poor from widening.
SIDDHARTH MEHROTRA (TEAM LEAD),HIMENDRA KUMAR,VEDANSHI JAIN,NIDH I JHA,RICHA SISODIA
GALGOTIAS UNIVERSITY, INDIA.
The traditional role of municipal bodies had been one of providing basic amenities of civic life. Services such as
water supply and sanitation, roads and drains, street-lights, collection and disposal of solid waste, maintenance of
public places, burial grounds and crematoria, cattle pounds, registration of births and deaths, maintenance of
markets have long been seen as the function of municipal bodies. In addition, they performed certain regulatory
functions relating construction of buildings, public health areas such as eating places, slaughter houses and
tanneries, etc. We have be discussing the amenities which are always given less importance.
1900-1950 1950-1980 1980-2002 2002-2007
Average Annual GDP Growth
• Opportunity of India's Urbanisation to 2030
• 5 times – the number by which the GDP will have multiplied by 2030
590 million people will live in cities, nearly twice the population of US today
270 million people net increase in working-age population
70% of net new employment will be generated in cities
91 million urban households will be middle class, up from 22 million today
68 cities will have population of 1 million plus, up from 42 today
$1.2 trillion capital investment is necessary to meet projected demand in India's cities
700-900 million square meters of commercial and residential space needs to be built – or a new Chicago every year
2.5 billion square meter of roads will have to be paved, 20 times the capacity added in the past decade
7,400 kilometers of metros and subways will need to be constructed – 20 times the capacity added in the past decade
Lack of Education - According to the data of 2004-05 the crude literacy rate of India is 63% with male literacy rate
78% and female literacy rate 51%. So we can see that the literacy rate is very low and apart from that the female
literacy rate. The female education is very important in the sense that when one female is educated then a whole
family is being educated as she is the backbone of a family. The value possessed by her would be transmitted to
her children who would be future citizens of India, so it is very important for females to be educated.
Lack of Healthcare Facilities at Nominal Prices – According to the 2009-2010 data 70% of all the hospitals in India
is privately owned. The number of doctors in public service is also not very encouraging, about 25% of doctors are
in public service, whereas rests 75% are doing private practice. These two factors constitute about 77.4% of the
healthcare expenditure of the country. We can easily imagine about the condition of the healthcare facilities that
are available for the lower strata of the society that live hand to mouth.
• Malnutrition – According to a study by the ministry of women and child development (WCD) in 2010 50% of
the child deaths were due to malnutrition and approximately half of the population of the children in India is
underweight. This can be attributed to the improper functioning of the Public Distribution System because
Government of India sanctioned Rs 55,578.18 crores as food subsidy in 2010 - 2011 as opposed to its
previous year’s subsidy of Rs 56,000 crores.
• Improper Functioning of the Public Distribution system (PDS) – We all know about the recent rise in price of
the wheat , onion and other necessary households, whereas on the other hand tons of onion , wheat etc were
being rotten in the government ware houses , being source of food for rodents. According to a study conducted
by FAO in 2001 there are 217.05 million people in India who are undernourished which is highest at that time
and the condition worsens from that time. So there is a major flaw in the public distribution system which
certainly needed a big changeover.
• Corruption –Last but not the least, corruption as we all know is a chronic disease in India which creeps into
the roots of the country to such an extent that no one can even think of getting his or her job getting done
without paying bribe. According to a study carried out by Transparency International in 2005 it had been come
into the fact approximately 75% of the population engages in bribing to get their work done in any public office.
”The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves, that we are underlings.”
• Development of the Education Framework – As discussed earlier the literacy rate of India is low , even the
literacy rate of countries like Guyana is 99% , Estonia 99.8 %. So we can see that how much the country is
lacking in terms of literacy rate. The public expenditure on education is presently of the order of 1200
thousand million Rs which in no way can be stated as less, the need for the hour is:
• Strict check should be there to ensure the proper working of the public school.
• Strict control to ensure proper student to teacher ratio.
• Opening of new schools in the remote areas.
According to 2005-05 data approximately 230 million students are
enrolled and still more are there who need just a little push.
Education can play a pivotal role in achieving success to attain
Water: OPERATIONAL EFFICIENCY AND SUSTAINABILITY
The unfinished tasks in water supply in urban areas may be summed up as
augmentation to reach the prescribed norms, higher degree of reliability,
assurance of water quality, a high standard of operation and management,
accountability to customers and in particular special arrangements to meet the
needs of the urban poor, and levy and recovery of user charges to finance the
maintenance functions as well as facilitate further investment in the sector. The
achievement of these tasks depends to a large on the willingness of the State
Governments and ULBs to make restructure water supply organisations, levy
reasonable water rates, take up reforms in billing, accounting and collection, and
become credit-worthy in order to have access to market funding. In addition,
measures suggested earlier for conservation, re- use, and re-charging of water
sources, should be taken up.
URBAN SANITATION: LOW COST SANITATION
Towns which do have sewerage do not often have sewage treatment plants, with the result that water
sources are getting polluted. It has been assessed that 80 per cent of pollution is caused by sewage
alone. In the first place, highly urbanised, industrialised and densely-populated urban centres may be
provided with sewerage, with priority being given to installing sewage treatment plants to prevent
pollution of water sources. For the majority of the urban centres, low cost sanitation is the appropriate
Low cost sanitation is not a programme solely for the urban poor or slum population. It has to be
propagated as the appropriate solution wherever the costly option of underground drainage is not
feasible. In this sense, there is need to offer more options to households that desire sanitation facilities
which, while being based on the ‘twin-pit- pour-flush’ model, is in keeping with their needs and capacity
to invest. Low cost sanitation is best propagated as a part and parcel of the maintenance of
environmental health. Within a town or city, the proper approach would be to take up a co- ordinated
programme covering sanitation in schools, individual households, and public places with special
emphasis on the sanitation needs of the urban poor and slum-dwellers and pavement dwellers.
Schemes sanctioned - 847
No. of towns covered - 1,317
Project Cost - Rs. 1,435.51 crore
Subsidy sanctioned - Rs. 486.891 crore
Loan sanctioned - Rs. 592.69 crores
Subsidy released - Rs. 250.67 crores
Loan amount released - Rs. 309.18 crore
Total units sanctioned - 35,53,585
Conversion - 17,05,701
Construction - 18,47,884
Community toilets - 3,966
No. of units completed - 14,58,274
No. of community toilets completed - 2,982
No. of scheme in progress
Conversion - 1,05,619
Construction - 2,12,987
Community toilets - 185
Towns declared scavenger free - 387
Scavengers liberated - 37,430
Solid Waste Management: A Suggested Solution
Given different treatment systems for compliance of the rules, individual health care establishment
cannot have own arrangements for comprehensive treatment and disposal of the waste generated by
them. Therefore, each town/city should have at least one common treatment facility for the management
of bio-medical waste. A common treatment facility for bio-medical waste has been established at Kothur
in Mehboobnagar district near Hyderabad, which is perhaps the first such facility in the country. The
facility has been established by a private company on a build-own-operate basis. HUDCO has provided
financial assistance for this project.
The company collects bio-medical waste from health care establishments in Hyderabad and Secunderabad
in specially fabricated covered vehicles with compartments for different types of waste. The waste is
transported to the Kothur plant. The facility has an incinerator with double chamber, wet- scrubber and a
30 metre high chimney stack. An indigenously manufactured microwave equipment has been installed
along with a small standby autoclave for certain categories of bio-medical waste. There is a shredder for
shredding sterilised waste. There is a secured landfill within the premises for incinerator ash and other
sterilised waste. The company is planning to install a treatment plant for the wash water generated while
washing the collection vehicles.
The facility caters to 6,000 beds per day at present and this is likely to increase to more than 10,000 beds
within a year. The project cost for this facility was Rs 120.62 lakh.
URBAN TRANSPORT SYSTEM : PRIVATISATION
The private sector has shown remarkable growth and entrepreneurial abilities in the
transport industry. It is a matter of concern that the financial and managerial capabilities
of the private sector are not being put to better use in urban public transport systems.
There is inadequate appreciation of the importance of an efficient public transport system
in the economic and social life of the city.
The right course would be to de-nationalise the sector, and bring in a competitive system
of road- based public transport in the cities, in a phased manner. The present systems,
while subjecting the State Road Transport Corporations to losses, do not provide reliable
and punctual services. With the sector being thrown open to the private organised
sector, a regulator can fix the fares and determine the subsidies to be provided by the
State for categories such as school-children, the disabled, and the elderly. The number of
such subsidies need to be kept low.
The transport systems should be operated by corporate organisations or co-operatives
of bus- owners. The minimum or qualifying level of investment capabilities and
experience of operators can be defined, so that the systems are run on professional lines
with attention being paid to passenger comfort, safety, reliability, and punctuality.
• Forbes India, March 19, 2010
Harvard Business Review, South Asia, January-February
Forbes India, November 19, 2010.
Banker to the Poor, Muhammad Yunus, Public Affairs.
India’s Emerging Economy, Kaushik Basu, Oxford University
Economic and Political Weekly, October 2, 2010, Vol. XLV No. 40
National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, 2005 [NREGA]
Report of the Second Year, April 2006 – March 2007
Links to websites referred to: