AuthorMahendra Prasad Singh
Published date01 June 2017
Date01 June 2017
Subject MatterEditorial
The opening piece in this issue deals with a national priority of the National
Democratic Alliance–II government, namely, enhancing basic infrastructures
through new urban missions as a major challenge India has been facing, especially
since the Independence. There has been a sharp decline in the rate of population
growth in rural areas in the country between 1991 and 2001 (–5.9 per cent) while
the growth rate in urban areas remained almost the same (+0.3 per cent). According
to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, in terms of the
2014 estimates, the most substantial urban growth will occur in India, China and
Nigeria, which will account for 37 per cent of the projected growth of global
urban population between 2014 and 2050. By 2050, India is projected to add
404 million urban population, more than either China (292 million) or Nigeria
(212 million). In the UN’s ranking of most populous cities, Delhi with 38 million
stands at number 2 preceded only by Tokyo and followed by Shanghai, Mexico
City, Sao Paulo and Mumbai. Rajiv Gauba draws attention to the paradox of
India’s fast growing economy and tardy growth of urban infrastructures. The state
of urban services is grossly inadequate. The conventional mode of financing
urban services has been grants and loans from government-owned financial
institutions against guarantees. Urban local governments in India are weak in
resources, autonomy and capacity. Private sector has until recently been reluctant
to invest in urban infrastructure projects. This article presents an overall analytical
perspective on the recently completed Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal
Mission (JNNURM) launched by the Union Ministry of Urban Development,
which envisaged a total investment of US$20 billion over seven years. It also
presents a slew of newly launched National Urban Mission programmes, that is,
Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT), Swachh
Bharat Mission (SBM), Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana
(HRIDAY) and Smart Cities Mission (SCM). For information of our readers, the
October–December 2016 issue of this Journal had published another article of
related interest: ‘Financing Smart Cities in India’.
Public procurement in India is a gigantic operation estimated to amount around
`110 trillion. Garima Bhagat examines the Indian practice in this domain in an
evolutionary framework and puts it in a comparative perspective to a certain
extent. She underlines the necessity of designing this procedure ‘so as to permit
maximum competition for public contracts as well as to ensure the best value
for money’. She emphasises the imperative of close cooperation among the
various stakeholders such as the Department of Expenditure, Central Vigilance
Indian Journal of Public
63(2) vii–ix
© 2017 IIPA
SAGE Publications
DOI: 10.1177/0019556117707098

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