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Know Your Smart City: Union Territories

The 13th part of the 'Know Your Smart City' web series looks at cities in the Union Territories

Debarghya Sanyal & Komal Amit Gera  |  New Delhi/ Chandigarh 

Know your smart city: Maharashtra

In the 13th part of the ‘Know Your Smart City’ web series on the 98 cities that have been shortlisted to be equipped with modern facilities and innovative solutions over time, we look at the seven cities in the Union Territories of India.

Silvassa

Originally a small village, Silvassa grew to prominence when the Portuguese Administration decided to transfer the seat of Nagar Haveli to the city in 1885. Dialects of Konkani Warli and Agri are the main languages spoken here, apart from a distinct dialect of Portuguese and Marathi and Gujarati as well. Its initial tax-free status helped boost industrial investment in Dadra and Nagar Haveli and contributed to the region’s industrial growth. Silvassa has a well-maintained road network. The nearest railway stations are in Vapi, around 18 km away, and Bhilad, around 12 km away.

Port Blair

Port Blair, the capital of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, is notable for its role in the struggle against British rule in India. From housing the Cellar Prison to serving as a major strategic location for Subhas Chandra Bose’s Indian National Army, the place was both a recipient of development measures under the colonial government and a hub for underground movements against the colonial masters. Port Blair has a tropical monsoon, little variation in average temperature and large amounts of precipitation throughout the year. Tourism is a major industry in Andaman; the bulk of the revenue earned by the government of Andaman & Nicobar comes through the tourism industry.

New Delhi

Covering mainly Lutyen's Delhi, the area under New Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) houses government buildings, ministerial homes, and major hotels. The area of Connaught Place, a major economic, political and social hub with British architecture and urban planning, besides prominent monuments like India Gate and Jantar mantar, fall in the NDMC area.

Kavaratti

The capital of Lakshadweep and well known for its pristine white sand beaches and calm lagoons, Kavaratti is a popular tourist destination. The island of Kavaratti lies 360 km off the coast of Kerala. Tourism is one of the primary industries on the island. A popular means of travel to Kavaratti from the Indian mainland is through an overnight voyage by passenger ships. The city is also known for its wide, clean road networks. Other major industries here include fisheries and agriculture, coconut being a dominant crop.

Chandigarh

One of the first planned cities of India after the independence in 1947, Chandigarh was conceptualised by Jawahar Lal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India, and designed by the French Architect Le Corbusier.

The foundation stone of city was laid in 1952. When Haryana was carved out of the state of Punjab in November 1966, the city assumed a unique distinction as a Union Territory and the capital of both Punjab and Haryana. The city, initially developed for a population of 500,000 now accommodates about one million people. The city is divided into 56 sectors, each measuring 800 x 1,200 metres.

Dominated by government offices and their employees until a few years ago, the city has Asia's largest cluster of fasteners. The Chandigarh Industrial area is also dotted with tractor ancillary units due to its proximity to HMT Tractors, Pinjore, and the erstwhile Punjab Tractors Limited (now owned by Mahindra Group) in Mohali.

Chandigarh has a centre of excellence, the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, an institute internationally acclaimed for break-through research in medical science.

In the past decade, the growth of the IT sector has taken the centre-stage in Chandigarh and become its single largest employer. The growth of retail, banking and IT have made Chandigarh a fast-growing city. Each household in the city has four vehicles on average.

One of the largest economic hubs in the country, and emerging centre for e-commerce, Chandigarh is known for its town planning, its progressive environment for business. Located near the foothills of the Sivalik range of the Himalayas, the city has vast fertile and flat land. The RBI ranked Chandigarh as the twelfth largest deposit centre and tenth largest credit centre nationwide as of June 2012. The government is a major employer in Chandigarh. with a per capita income of Rs 99,262, it is the richest city in India.

Diu

The town of Diu has historically been a major port for trade routes on the Arabian Sea. Under the Portuguese occupation until 1961, the town still has a large number of Portuguese speakers, while Gujarati remains the major language. Fisheries are the major industries in Diu.

Oulgaret

Oulgaret municipality came into being on January 14, 1994, after being elevated from a panchayat. It is pread across 36.7 sq km and has a population of 3,00,104 people living in 37 wards. The municipality is constituted by the revenue villages of Alankuppam, Kalapet, Pillaichavady, Oulgaret, Karuvadikuppam, Saram, Reddiarpalayam and Thattanchavady.

First Published: Mon, September 21 2015. 18:37 IST