CHENNAI: A sum of Rs 2.5 crore - This is the carrot the Union Ministry of Urban Development is offering to make the officials managing the major cities of the country think of out-of-the-box solutions to the problems Indian cities are facing.
Chennai will be competing with other cities by submitting innovative research ideas in collaborations with institutes such as IIT-Madras. According to official sources, the Union Ministry has set May 31 as the deadline for submission of the project to be eligible to get funding under the first round.
The Union Ministry’s idea is simple. It will fund up to Rs 2.5 crore for research projects that will come out with innovative solutions to the problems urban areas face. The local bodies, like the city corporation, have to submit the ideas to get approval from the ministry for funding. The ministry feels it will spur innovative mindset in addressing the urban issues and collaboration with institutes of urban excellence such as IITs and IIMs. And also, 40 per cent of the total project cost, which should not exceed Rs 5 crore, must be borne by industry.
Thus the ministry is trying to forge a collaboration of educational institution, urban governance bodies and the private industry to address the problems faced by the urban areas of the country. The research project must be completed in 24 months.
Out of the Rs 5 crore for the project, 40 per cent must be contributed by the industry, 10 per cent by the urban local body and 50 per cent by the Union Ministry.
While the deadline for cities to submit the proposal was May 31, the ministry will make the selections by June 2016 under the first round.
Officials privy to the scheme said a maximum of 10 projects would be selected from the proposals across the country.