A national exchange workshop was organised by ICLEI South Asia under its European Union funded PROMotion of Inclusive, Sustainable Growth and Diversity to Strengthen Local Governments (PROMISE) project in Karnal on the 20th of April, 2018.
PROMISE project is being implemented in the cities of Karnal, Jabalpur, Ajmer and Warangal in association with the Administrative Staff College of India. The project aims at inclusive and sustainable growth through the infrastructure improvement projects being implemented under national schemes such as Smart Cities, AMRUT, Swachh Bharat, Housing for All in these cities.
The workshop discussed on-going project activities, sector specific work and learnings from the project cities, while also presenting the draft toolkit being developed under the project.
The PROMISE toolkit is an excel based tool which is used to evaluate the existing service levels of the city, take ideas from the city authorities, and other stakeholders who are the end users. The views from the stakeholders are taken in the form of primary surveys, one to one meetings, focused group discussions, and added in the excel to get the results. It helps the municipalities decide which project they want to take up first.
The project team emphasised the need for convergence between the ongoing national and state level schemes for improved infrastructure services in the Indian cities. The team demonstrated need for capacity improvement for municipal staff and teams to enable them to connect with beneficiaries on ground and address their specific needs while implementing city level large projects.
Given the variety and diversity of beneficiaries and specificity of their needs in our cities, this project looks at connecting with local communities, specific groups such as women, old, youth, vulnerable and so on to document their requirements and present them through a tool at the city level.
Dr. Priyanka Soni, Commissioner, Municipal Corporation Karnal, spoke about various inputs by the project team involving communities such as bus route rationalisation, pedestrianisation proposal for the market street, and pricing for parking that the city has found useful.
"ICLEI South Asia is working for better transport in Karnal city. I am hoping all the good initiatives that have worked for other project cities should be implemented in Karnal as well," she said.
The workshop was attended by Shri Harvinder Kalyan, member of legislative assembly; Dr. Priyanka Soni, Municipal Corporation Commissioner; Mr. Krishan Garg, Senior Deputy Mayor; Mr. Manoj Wadhwa, Deputy Mayor; Mr. Souvik Datta, Senior Programme Manager, European Union; officials from Municipal Corporation Karnal, Ambala, Sonipat, Panipat, Jabalpur, Ajmer and Warangal as well as neighboring city councils of Indri, Taroari, Assand, Nissing, Gharaounda, and Nilokheri also took part in the workshop. Senior representatives from NIUA, JNU, KCGMC, IIT-D, AIILSG, PRIA, local NGOs, Market Associations and various government departments from Karnal also participated actively in the workshop.
The workshop brought participants from various cities, academia, NGOs, and city based groups on a single platform to share their experience and learnings.
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