Dixit for city-specific policies to deal with growth problem

Press Trust of India New Delhi | Updated on February 21, 2011 Published on February 21, 2011

dixit   -  PTI

Holding the ever-increasing population pressure as a major challenge facing Delhi, the Chief Minister, Ms Sheila Dixit, today pitched for city-specific policies in the 12th Five Year Plan so that concerns of major cities are addressed.

Ms Dixit, addressing a conference on combating climate change, said the Centre must formulate specific policies to help tackle various challenges including the pressure on their resources.

“I would like to say that cities and rural areas need to be treated differently. Can we have specific policies that are specific to the needs of the growing cities? That will give us more freedom to deal with the challenges,” Ms Dixit told the gathering.

Population pressure

Identifying increasing population as a major challenge, Ms Dixit said a separate set of policies exclusively for the growing and populous cities will help the authorities address the challenges effectively.

“I do look forward to seeing that cities of India are treated in a somewhat different manner because the lifestyle there is different, the requirement of cities is different, be it water, energy or transport,” she said, requesting the Planning Commission to look into the issue seriously.

The Planning Commission Deputy Chairman, Mr Montek Singh Ahluwalia, was present at the conference being attended by experts from 20 countries.

The conference has been organised by Delhi Government to seek opinion of global experts in formulating a long-term plan in making the national capital a carbon-neutral city in a time-bound manner.

“We are facing a very specific problem of population.We are one of the cities having largest number of population density. We have an ever-increasing population attracted by booming Delhi. As it happens to be the national capital, the migration into our city becomes more attractive,” she said.

Green measures

Listing various initiatives taken by her government to protect the environment, she identified increasing the green cover substantially and introduction of CNG for public transport as major steps in this direction.

“We are a growing city. Our needs are growing. We need to achieve a lot than what we already have. But at the same time, it has been a constant battle to protect in environment,” she said.

Ms Dixit said the government has been encouraging the citizens, government institutions and private sector to follow the the “motto” of “reduce, recycle and reuse” of scarce resources.

Delegates and experts from various countries in Europe, Asia and the US, besides representatives from various States are participating in the conference

In tune with the ‘green agenda', Ms Dixit said, the government has introduced green building concept for all its upcoming buildings and closing down coal based power plants besides encouraging rain water harvesting.

“We are committed to reduce the carbon footprints,” she said.

Addressing the gathering, the Chief Secretary, Mr Rakesh Mehta, said Delhi is into the ‘green agenda' and the government was in the process of coming up with a policy initiative to make the capital a truly carbon-neutral city.

Solar power policy

Mr Mehta expressed the hope that Delhi will become a city of rooftop solar energy appliances very soon and the government will soon announce a solar power policy to encourage people to go for the clean energy.

He said government was also mulling setting up a Science and Technology Innovation Council to asses the kind of infrastructure to be required after 10 years when population is projected to touch 24 million from current 18 million.

A large number of Mayors from various countries are also participating in the conference.

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Published on February 21, 2011
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