Urban development initiatives, Smart Cities Mission and Housing for All, unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi today, are likely to infuse Rs 4 lakh crore once integrated with other missions like Digital India and Swachh Bharat, say industry experts.
The move is expected to help create as many as 34 lakh jobs in the country as the decision will have significant "multiplier effect" for over 250 core and ancillary sectors, including infrastructure, logistics and modern retail, they said.
Pratap Padode, Founder-Director of Smart Cities Council India said the smart cities mission will attract huge investments from international companies and even the private sector, which has been shying away from PPPs.
"The smart cities mission and AMRUT (Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation) are likely to infuse a total amount of Rs 4,00,000 crore, once integrated with all other missions like Digital India, Swachh Bharat, Housing for All etc," he added.
Modi launched three urban development schemes, AMRUT, Smart Cities Mission and Housing for All, saying urbanisation should be viewed as an opportunity and urban centres should be seen as growth engines.
While 500 cities will be developed under AMRUT scheme, there would be 100 smart cities over five years and Housing for All aims at construction of 2 crore houses in urban areas in the next seven years, Modi said.
Assocham President Rana Kapoor said sectors like housing, transport, sanitation and power supply will require significant investment.
"An increase in infrastructure investment equivalent to 1 per cent of GDP can create an additional 34 lakh jobs," Kapoor said.
Chandan Chowdhury, India Managing Director of Dassault Systems, said if urban growth is unchecked and unplanned, it could lead to massive energy and water consumption and wastage, besides growing carbon emissions.
Key challenges that urban areas face include increasing transport demands, depleted ground water resources and poor disaster management planning, he added.
The process of building urban infrastructure would lead to an explosive growth in the economy, according to KPMG India Partner, Infrastructure and Government services, Jaijit Bhattacharya.