Activists slam Pune's urban governance rating as detached from reality

Remigio Civitarese
Marzo 15, 2018

The study, which evaluates quality of governance in cities in its 2017 edition, covered 23 major cities across India based on 89 questions.

For instance, London and NY scored 8.8 out of 10, indicating that these cities have the best local administrative system to address the civic issues, Nair said.

Delhi was ranked sixth this year with a score of 4.4 and Mumbai secured 4.1 out of 10.

Pune, Kolkata and Thiruvananthapuram have topped in terms of the quality of governance that includes the functioning of the municipalities and other systems that run the city, says a survey.

The survey attempted to compare Indian cities with top class cities of the world like United Kingdom's London, United States'New York, South Africa's Johannesburg.

"According to the ASICS, it does not measure quality of infrastructure and services, such as roads and traffic, garbage, water, housing, sanitation and air pollution, but instead measures the preparedness of cities to deliver high quality infrastructure and services in the long-term by evaluating "city-systems" of spatial planning and design standards, municipal finance, municipal staffing, political leadership at the city-level and transparency and citizen participation", said lawyer-activist Sarang Yadwadkar. Kolkata, Thiruvananthapuram, Bhubaneswar and Surat were ranked behind Pune.

The bottom five cities on the list were Bengaluru, Chandigarh, Dehradun, Patna and Chennai, with scores ranging between 3 and 3.3 out of 10.

The annual survey also pointed out that most Indian cities use town and country planning acts which were drafted decades before the economy was liberalized and the lack of a modern, contemporary urban planning framework may be denying India up to 3% of its GDP every year. The report is based on a study of urban bodies and an analysis of laws, policies and RTI replies.

Janaagraha's Annual Survey of the cities of India's city Systems (ASICS) 2017 has revealed that there has been an improvement in city systems, but at a very slow pace.

An ASICS team member said Delhi's score had improved because of urban renewal projects under Central government schemes such as AMRUT and Smart City.

The scores signal that Indian cities are "grossly under-prepared" in delivering a high quality of life that is sustainable in the long term, said the report.

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