India’s largest e-blood bank coming up in New Town

India’s largest e-blood bank is coming up in New Town, on the outskirts of Kolkata. This would be another state-of-the-art infrastructural addition to New Town, one of the designated smart cities by the Bengal Government.

The idea behind an e-blood bank is that any person would be able to get detailed information on the availability and types of blood through the internet. This would be a big boon for the people of not only New Town, but across the State.

The project, coming up on 3 acres, is going to be executed by the State Health Department. The blood bank would be located beside Tata Medical Centre.


নিউ টাউনে তৈরী হবে দেশের বৃহত্তম ই-ব্লাড ব্যাঙ্ক

দেশের বৃহত্তম ই-ব্লাড ব্যাঙ্ক তৈরী হবে কলকাতার নিউ টাউনে। প্রায় ৩ একর জমিতে তৈরী হবে এই ব্লাড ব্যাঙ্ক। টাটা মেডিকেল সেন্টারের পাশে হবে এই ব্লাড ব্যাঙ্ক।

এই ব্লাড ব্যাঙ্ক গড়ে তোলা হলে যে কোন মানুষ ইন্টারনেটের মাধ্যমেই ঘরে বসে দেখে নিতে পারবেন ওই ব্লাড ব্যাঙ্কে তার প্রয়োজনীয় রক্ত পাওয়া যাবে কিনা।

আগামী দিনে এই ব্লাড ব্যাঙ্কের চাহিদা নিউ টাউন তথা সারা রাজ্যের মানুষের কাছে অনেকটা বেড়ে যাবে।




‘Smart Anandababu’ – Icon of smart city project

The smart city initiatives of New Town and Salt Lake have already grabbed the attention of mayors from some countries. The New Town Kolkata Development Authority (NKDA) is now planning to follow the ‘Buladi’ route to reach out to residents of New Town to have a direct interface with the citizens in a smart way.

Similar to the state’s counter-AIDS icon, the authorities are planning ‘Smart Anandababu’ who will always be there to listen, give details and refer it to the relevant section through a web-based software at the back-end and give feedback to the concerned residents.

Officials said that resolving citizen’s grievances is one of the main focus areas of the smart city strategy. While many are talking of online web portals, complaint monitoring software and GISbased photo shoots through smartphone applications, officials said that the interaction needs to have a human face, a person people can relate to and hence the ‘ Anandababu’ ídea has been conceptualised.

To make the system more effective, the person on the other side of telephone will be backed up with a control room that will provide time bound results on the actions being taken by giving sms based feedback to the complainant on his or her mobile phone.

The authorities are also holding ‘Smart Fridays’ where interactions are taking place with citizens of the township to discuss on the smart city initiatives.

‘Smart’ kiosks in Bidhannagar for citizens

In a ‘smart’ move, the Bidhannagar municipal corporation on Saturday opened a kiosk at the Mayor’s ward office in Salt Lake where residents will be able to contact him as well as the municipal commissioner through video-conferencing, submit building plans for sanction and pay their property taxes.

The civic authorities plan to introduce a smart card for all households of the township with in the next three months, using which residents will be able to know everything about municipal service and property taxes and pay the taxes through a common portal set up at the kiosk.

The next such smart kiosk will be opened at the City Centre mall and subsequently , at all the ward offices in Salt Lake.

As part of the initiative, the officials recently put up a 10 km canvas across the township, inviting residents to write or draw their suggestions to develop Salt Lake into a Smart City; it has been holding seminars for citizens and distributing feedback forms to homes, asking for their suggestions.


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CII inks pact with WB Govt to develop smart cities

The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) on Friday sealed an agreement with the West Bengal government to build four smart cities in the state.

Dr Saugat Mukherjee, regional director, CII Eastern Region, and Sutanu Prasad Kar, mission director, Smart Cities Mission of West Bengal, signed the MoU during a Roundtable on CII National Mission on Smart Cities.

As per the agreement, CII will work with the state’s urban development department and other stakeholders in developing the vision, setting goals and charting strategies on how to transform Bidhan Nagar, New Town-Rajarhat, Haldia and Durgapur, the four urban locations in West Bengal, into world-class smart cities.

CII will also collaborate with the state government in terms of mobilising industry expertise and resources, the release said.

Top municipal and state government officials and senior executives from various companies took part.

Singapore team shows interest in New Town smart city project

A seven-member team from Singapore met state urban development officials recently and showed interest in various smart city projects, especially that of New Town.

The state government has asked the delegation to see if they could form a consortium to assist the government for the smart city projects.

The state is also planning to stage a road show in Singapore to promote the smart city projects.

The delegation from Singapore consisted of Grace Chiew, Wong So San, Khor Aik Lan, Amita Mehta, Tay Lian Cheu, Uma Maheswaran and Nirup Jayanth.

The delegates expressed interest mainly in urban planning and mobility and development of parks, leisure centres and other facilities.

New Town set to be a ‘Smarter’ City, thanks to WB CM

New Town is all set to be a ‘Smarter’ City, thanks to the initiative taken up by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

The West Bengal Chief Minister had paved the way behind this initiative during her recent visit to London. The Future City Catapult, an UK-based group had signed MoU with the West Bengal Government. The representatives of the British firm are already in the city.

Water supply, solid waste management, environment, IT aided services and other such amenities are the basics of the Smart City concept. The State wants to make New Town an educational hub besides the destination for health services, IT services and financial services. This is the primary reason for which the assistance of the UK-based organization is being taken.

The State Government now desires to build a Futurist City at New Town and is making all efforts to make this possible.

Bengal to present theme towns to investors in the UK

The West Bengal government is planning to project six theme townships in the state as potential destinations for British investment to back West Bengal Chief Minister Ms Mamata Banerjee’s visit to the UK later this month to woo investors.

Each of these theme townships will focus on specific sectors like healthcare, industry and culture.   While Siliguri in North Bengal has been picked as healthcare and education hub, Baruipur in South 24 Parganas district will have geriatrics care as its theme.

Dumurjola in Howrah district has been identified for sports, Kalyani in Nadia district for analytics, Asansol in Burdwan district for industry and Santiniketan in Birbhum district, famous for the Tagore connection, for culture. With less than 20 days left for the WB CM’s flight to take off, state officials are busy giving final touches to the projects.

The theme townships will create a welcome opportunity for smooth investment in a state where land acquisition has been a major obstacle for industrialisation. The officials said the land in these townships belongs to the state government and there is no need for acquisition. Since the major obstacle of land has been resolved, we hope for a positive response.

The theme townships will be urban clusters with a concentration of projects woven around a central theme. To make things easy, all necessary infrastructures will come up at the specified locations.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is also expected to present a video of the six proposed theme-based smart cities in West Bengal when she goes to London at the end of July. The video will be part of a documentary the State team will showcase at various business events in the UK. State government officials are busy finalising the project details to showcase the theme cities.

Last month, the state government had cleared the decks to set up six modern townships based on different themes. The concept of developing theme-based cities is new in this country. A theme city is an urban cluster with a concentration of projects woven round the central theme.

The theme townships provide an excellent opportunity to businessmen for making smooth investments since no land is needed to be acquired. The land for these townships is owned by the State Government.

To make the projects successful, the State Government plans to give non-monetary incentives, such as single-window clearance and relaxation norms for floor area ratio. A global invitation will be floated and the e-auction process will take place before Durga Puja.

The London visit is Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s most crucial initiative this year to attract investments. In August last year, she had visited Singapore with a business delegation, that has resulted in a lot of positive interest in the State.


WB smart cities


Bengal Govt to set up Sports City at Howrah’s Dumurjola

The West Bengal Government has identified a 50-acre plot at Howrah’s Dumurjola for developing a Sports City .

In the proposed Sports City, 25% land will be reserved for developing sports facilities such as football and cricket grounds, swimming pool and indoor games.

The Dumurjola Sports City is one of the six theme based townships that the state government plans to develop.

The 50 acres of land, where the Sports City would come up, belonged to Howrah Improvement Trust. The plot will shortly be allotted through e-auction for developing the sports township. The State urban development minister, the Howrah Mayor and senior urban development officials will shortly visit the spot.

The developers will have to follow the same guidelines that have been framed for the six proposed township projects. Out of the total area of the township, 25% will have to be kept reserved for people belonging to economically weaker sections whose earning is less than Rs 3 lakh a year.

Bengal cabinet clears deck for developing six theme cities

West Bengal cabinet on Friday cleared the deck for developing six modern cities in the state.

Speaking to the press after the cabinet meeting, state Urban Development and Municipal Affairs Minister Firhad Hakim said the location for six modern cities had already been finalised. The Cabinet had even named all the six proposed cities according to choice and importance of the place, he said adding they would have modern facilities for decent living.

Naming the theme cities

Speaking about the smart cities, Hakim said one would come up over 85 acres at Dabgram near Siliguri and would be called ‘Teesta’ after the name of a major river in north Bengal. Another city would come up near Bolpur in Birbhum district over 127 acres and christened ‘Gitabitan’ after a popular compilation of songs by Rabindranath Tagore.

A third city over 50 acres would come up near the twin industrial towns of Asansol-Durgapur covering Churulia, birth place of the poet Kazi Nazrul Islam. It would be named ‘Agnibina’, after the name of a collection of poems by the rebel poet. One more city would come up near Kalyani, developed by erstwhile chief minister Bidhan Chandra Roy, in Nadia district over 50 acres and would be known as ‘Samriddhi’.

Another city, which is yet to be named, would come up at Dumurjala in neighbouring Howrah district over 50 acres. The sixth smart city would come up at Baruipur in the southern outskirt of the metropolis over 86 acres and would be named after the famed Bengal matinee idol Uttam Kumar, the minister said.

Allotment of land

In all cases the state government has adequate land and would be developed by the state urban development department, Hakim said. Besides, the state government would also develop some thematic private township over land within ceiling at different places in the state.

The themes could range from knowledge, sports and IT and the townships would be developed by various wings of the department like HIDCO and KMDA, he said.

Hakim hoped that the projects would bring in huge investment and create a lot of employment opportunity. In all cases there would be 25 per cent reservations for the economically weaker sections.

Bengal to woo IT cos at Analytics City

Keeping up with its smart city initiatives, the state government is now working on plans to develop an `Analytics City’ near Kolkata to woo reputable IT firms dealing in data analysis. It will have the infrastructure of a smart city with residential and commercial complexes and other facilities.

The proposal of developing such a theme-based city was earlier mooted by the Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI). Discussions have been held with state urban development officials on the proposal.

The state government is already working on plans to develop a number of ‘theme-based’ townships and cities. Places like Bolpur, Kalyani, Asansol, Dumurjala, Baruipur and Debgram has been identified for such theme-based townships and a number of real estate developers have also shown interest to build these theme cities.

Besides, the state government is also working on plans to develop smart cities, keeping New Town, where a number of initiatives have already been taken, on top of the list.