Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh today released his Congress party's vision document for the state's urban development, focussing on improvement in infrastructure, fire-fighting system upgradation, water and sewage management, parking management and e-governance. The policy document, drafted keeping in mind the urbanisation trends and major civic-infrastructural issues, focuses on planned investments in urban local bodies to improve the living conditions in urban areas. In the short term, the party has listed out installation of LED streetlights and fire fighting system at the top of the agenda, according to a party statement. Another thrust area is collection and transportation of solid waste with smart infrastructure in the cities, for which the party wants to promote Smart Waste Collection System, where waste containers are replaced by underground or semi- underground waste collection containers/ bins. The party also proposed in the vision document to implement online building plan approval system in all the municipal bodies of Punjab. The vision document cites 50 per cent reservation for women in municipal elections as a step towards strengthening the urban local bodies through women empowerment. It proposes overhauling of the Punjab Municipal Outdoor Advertisement Policy-2012 with a dynamic pricing module and transparent bidding system to ensure improved safety of citizens and better transparency. Considering the gravity of the parking problems in urban areas, the Congress proposes to adopt and implement appropriate policy along with comprehensive parking measures to promote sustainable transportation strategies and discourage growing dependence on personal motor vehicles. Towards the realisation of its long-term vision for the urban areas, the party proposes to bring about 100 per cent coverage of water supply, sewerage and STP, with all sewage treatment plants to be upgraded to the latest technology to meet with the latest norms. It has also proposed to ensure 24x7 surface water supply in Amritsar, Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Patiala. Senior Congress leaders including state unit president Sunil Jakhar and minister Navjot Singh Sidhu were also present at the release of the vision document.
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