Address of Shri M.Venkaiah Naidu, Minister of Urban Development, HUPA and Parliamentary Affairs at ‘Mumbai-Next?’ Conference in Mumbai on February 6, 2015

Friends !

-I am indeed delighted to be with such a distinguished gathering assembled for brainstorming over the fundamental issue of “Mumbai-Next?”

-For this basic question, my simple answer is ‘Basics First’. Let us see what does this mean as we go along.

-This thematic question is another variation of ‘India-What Next?’. These two questions are so intelinked that they almost become synonymous. If solutions can be found for the current problems of Mumbai, our country would instantaneously find solutions for the issues and challenges in the urban sector.

-This is the story unraveling in urban India with attendant issues and challenges. That is why I have said, Mumbai’ s problems and solutions are that of India.

-The present century belongs to cities, more particularly, in the context of our country.

-Urban areas are the growth engines of economy, the world over. At present, about 65% of our GDP comes from urban areas that account only for about one third of our total population. Soon, this ratio is going to be 75%.

-For our country to emerge as the economic power house  of the world, as we all dream to be in the near future, the key lies in the way we manage our urban expansion.

-It comes with challenges. But opportunities also come knocking along with these challenges. So, the main question is, are Mumbai and India ready to seize these opportunities?

-The criticality of urban areas for economic development is best captured in respect of Mumbai city.

-Mumbai, the financial and commercial capital of our country accounts for 6.16% of country’s
GDP, 10% of total factory employment, 25% of industrial output, 40% of foreign trade, 33% of total Income Tax collection, 60% of customs revenue and 20% of total central excise tax  collection.

-Does one need any more evidence of importance of Mumbai and of urban areas for the economic development of our country?

-It is in this context that this important event is being organized and I compliment ‘Mumbai First’ for this initiative.

-Mumbai has several firsts to its credit. The first bus service introduced by BEST more than a hundred years ago, the first train got off the rails from here more than 150 years ago, the first railway station at Chatrapati Shivaji terminal, country’s first skywalks etc.

-But where does Mumbai stand today? Why is it lagging behind in putting required infrastructure in place for its teaming population? Why is living here becoming a daily challenge?

-With a Per capita Income in Mumbai three times that of national average which is estimated to reach an impressive level of US $ 23,000 per capita GDP by 2020-21, why is Mumbai crying for relief?

-Mumbai is the land of opportunities and so thousands migrate to this city every day. This is an inescapable reality and this is challenge is required to be met in all seriousness.

-While the urban rail transport system of Mumbai is being stretched to its limit and is being challenged every day, why is that this city has only about 11 kms. of modern metro service that too commissioned only last year between Versova and Ghatkopar as Mumbai Metro Line-1? Delhi, on the other hand has about 120 kms of Metro Rail and going to add another 150 kms. in the near future?

-Obviously, basics went wrong some where. So, the need of the hour is to get the ‘Basics First’. What are these basics? Required transport infrastructure with multi-modality is the most fundamental of these basics. Housing and sanitation are the next imperatives.

-The general deficiencies and challenges of urban planning and execution are most evident in the case of Mumbai.

- Several infrastructure projects have been conceived and are being executed in Mumbai for making city life better. But where we are missing out on is the time taken for their execution for various reasons. These reasons, however real and genuine, can not be excuses for time and cost overruns.

-The cases of missed timelines in respect of Navi Mumbai Airport, Mumbai Trans Harbour Link are some cases in point.

-Resource constraint is the general excuse offered in our context. I am happy to read an interview of the Chief Minister Shri Devendra Fadanavis in a newspaper yesterday. He asserted rightly that funds are not an issue with several looking for investment opportunities.

-What is needed are smart leadership and smart people to make any city worthy of living.

-A smart leadership should put in place an enabling mechanism in place for quick project approvals and co-opt people in decision making and execution. People should be smart enough to realize their share of responsibilities in managing a city like Mumbai and be willing partners to enhance its capacities to rise to the challenges and convert them into opportunities.

-After the last few months of being in office, I am convinced that given the nature of urbanization challenges, city development has got to be a people’s movement. It can’t be just the responsibility  of the executive.

-Mumbai is known for the vibrancy of its citizens. People who can brave such adversities of living in Mumbai on a daily basis have the energies and abilities to take the city to a new level provided they are made partners in this task.

-Only a couple of days back, we have organized stakeholder consultations on reducing the time taken for approving construction projects in urban areas.

-I was told thereafter that in Mumbai, 27 clearences and no-objection certificates are required to be taken before starting any construction project. And on an average, it takes about six months to do so and in individual cases, the time taken is in the range of two years. Can we afford this as we dream of becoming an economic super power?

- It follows that the ease of doing business in urban areas like Mumbai needs to be substantially improved so that we can build houses for slum dwellers by enabling investment flows that are critical to do so.

-I am happy to know of the initiatives being undertaken by Mumbai Municipal Corporation to break into the top 30 cities in terms of ease of doing construction business.

-We have asked Mumbai Corporation to come out with a model online integrated process for according approvals in 30 days which can be replicated by others in due course.

-Shri Fadanvis has rightly referred in his interview to the need for clean projects that have all the approvals to attract investments. If we make such clean project proposals with appropriate financial models, investments will certainly flow and we can address the problems of Mumbai and other cities.

-I understand that Mckensey has estimated an investment need of about US $ 9 billion per year over the next 10-15 years to meet infrastructure needs of Mumbai. This can be possible if only we have right investment climate in place.

Friends !

-A decent house is a basic parameter of dignified living which is a matter of right for every citizen. I loose sleep when I think of Mumbai’s slums and the living conditions there. Can’t we fix this problem? We can provided there is will and can find a way forward.

-The vested interests that thrive and exploit the misery of slum people need to be demolished with an iron hand and then evolve investible projects for redevelopment of slums in-situ or by relocation.

-Our Prime Minister has asked all of us to collectively ensure housing for all by 2022 and we shall do it.

-Sanitation in urban areas including in Mumbai is a matter of serious concern. Living by the side of filth all around, garbage piles, unkempt drains, leaking sewerage etc., amounts to negation of basic right to health.

-PM has again launched another initiative of Swachh Bharat Mission to make Mumbai and all 4,041 statutory towns clean in the next five years. All of us collectively need to rise to the task.

-Urban infrastructure including roads, efficient public transport, clean drinking water, solid waste management, digital connectivity, smart water and power grids, intelligent transport systems, responsive administration through e-governance, citizen participation in decision making, decent housing etc., are the fundamental requirements to make living in Mumbai and all urban areas worthy of it.

-Inclusive urban development is our government’s motto.

-Building smart cities and other initiatives of our government seek to address the challenges of urbanization as we seek to convert urban areas worthy of decent living and there by harness their potential of driving economic growth.

-We have a smart leader in Delhi and one in Maharashtra. These are exciting times for the country. We have to reach out to newer horizons. We shall do so.

Friends !

-A shower can’t bring life in Mumbai to a stand still. This is no way to make Mumbai fully emege as the global city and a global financial hub.

-We have to get our basics right. We need to fix the basic problems of Mumbai in quick time.

-What lies in store for Mumbai next also applies to the country.

-All stakeholders including the people of this great city, corporators, MLAs, corporate the selected and elected executive need to rise to the occasion.

-We can get the basics right if only we reorient our basic attitudes and mindset.

-Mumbai can be made smart only through smart thinking and smart actions.

-On this occasion and in the presence of the Deputy Finance Minister Shri Jayant Sinha, I would like to assure all of you that central government will not be found wanting in changing the contours of Mumbai.

-In the end, ‘Mumbai-Next?’ –A new beginning to fix the problems by getting the basics in all aspects right.

Thank you all !


States Sensitization Workshop on new Urban Initiatives in Mumbai on February 7

Shri Venkaiah Naidu to reach out to Senior Officials and 120 Municipal Commissioners from 5 States

Maharashtra CM Shri Devendra Fadnavis also to Attend the Workshop

Urban Governance Reforms, Implementation of New Schemes, PPP Models to be discussed

Top brass of the Ministries of Urban Development and Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation including the two ministers, secretaries and other senior officials will hold a day long consultations with senior officials and about 120 Municipal Commissioners from the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Chattisgarh in Mumbai on February 7, 2015 on various issues relating to implementation of new urban sector initiatives.

Minister of Urban Development Shri M.Venkaiah Naidu will set off the deliberations at the day long ‘Consultative Workshop on Urban Governance’ sharing with the states his concerns about managing growing urbanization, state of urban governance, experiences of implementation of JNNURM and new initiatives required in the context of new initiatives of the central government like Smart Cities, National Urban Development Mission for 500 Cities, Swachh Bharat Mission, Housing for All and Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana. Issues like Cyber Security and Public Private Participation Models for resource mobilization will also be discussed.

Maharasthra Chief Minister Shri Devendra Fadnavis, Union Minister of State for UD and HUPA Shri Babul Supriyo and the Maharashtra Minister of State for Urban Development Dr.Ranjit Vitthalrao Patil will attend the workshop.

Senior officials of the Ministries of Urban Development and HUPA will make detailed presentations on various schemes bringing out issues for consideration and action by the states and urban local bodies. Responses of states will be taken on each of implementation issues.

Mumbai Workshop is the third in the series being organized by the Ministry of Urban Development to take states and urban local bodies on board for effective implementation of new urban sector initiatives. Two Workshops were earlier held for southern and northern states in Hyderabad and New Delhi respectively.

The fourth and final workshop for Eastern and North-Eastern states will be held later this month.

PM to Heads of Indian Missions

Use the current global environment to position India in leading role
"You are vibrant representatives of a glorious heritage"
India has a great responsibility to help the world counter new threats to global peace
India must lead the fight against climate change; love for nature is part of Indian culture

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, today said that the present global environment represents a rare opportunity, when the world is keen to embrace India, and India is moving forward with confidence. Addressing Heads of Indian Missions from across the world, the Prime Minister urged them to use this unique opportunity to help India position itself in a leading role, rather than just a balancing force, globally. Urging them to shed old mindsets, the Prime Minister said they should be quick to adapt to changing global situations.

Emphasizing the role of "Heads of Missions" in projecting India to the world, the Prime Minister described them as "shining vibrant representatives" (tejasvi, jeevant anshpunj) of India`s glorious heritage. He urged them to work ceaselessly and with a clear mind, on India`s development priorities, and to advance India`s interests abroad.

Speaking of conflicts in the twenty-first century, the Prime Minister said there were new "actors" and new "threats" to global peace and prosperity, and added that India, which always stood for "Vishva-Bandhutva" and peace – the brotherhood of the world – had a great responsibility in helping the world counter these challenges to peace.

On the challenge of climate change, the Prime Minister said protecting the environment is part of India`s cultural heritage, and therefore, India must take the lead in countering this challenge, and also work towards a change in global attitudes towards the challenges of climate change. He said Indian culture was replete with illustrations which indicated "prakriti-prem" – "love for nature."

The Prime Minister credited the Indian diplomatic community for their success in the International Day of Yoga being adopted by the United Nations in record time, with a record number of co-sponsors. He said Yoga should be projected as a possible solution to common everyday problems of people across the world, including stress management.

The Prime Minister said the NITI Aayog has recognized the Indian diaspora as a great strength of our nation, and Heads of Missions must come up with innovative ways, in which to positively build upon this strength.

The Prime Minister called for preparing a compendium of best practices of Missions across the world, and spreading them horizontally. He called upon Missions to contribute towards developing a culture for "Swachhta" – cleanliness, and to remain ahead of the curve on digital diplomacy. He urged Missions to maintain digital libraries showcasing the best of Indian culture, and maintaining regular contact with prominent individuals from countries abroad, who visited or planned to visit India. He said relationships have been important for all mankind throughout history, even as humanity has struggled to deal with challenges.

The Union Minister for External Affairs Smt. Sushma Swaraj, the MoS for External Affairs Shri V.K Singh, and the Foreign Secretary, Shri S. Jaishankar, were present on the occasion.


Indian Naval Symphonic Orchestra – 15

Indian Naval Band captured the hearts and minds of the music aficionados during an Annual Symphonic Musical Extravangza held at Siri Fort Auditorium, New Delhi on 07 Feb 15. The world famous band regaled and enthralled the audience with a wide range of repertoire of stirring Martial Music, arragements of Western Classical, Indian Classical and other forms of contemporary popular and folk music.

During the melodious evening the band continued to relate closely to the audience, incorporating varied choices like fanfare, overture, jazz, fantasia, pop, swing music and patriotic music, while maintaining high standard of professionalism. The highlight of the evening was the signature performance by the young drummers of the Navy who presented ‘Drummers Light Tattoo’ to everyone’s delight. The band perfomed admirably under the baton of Commander VC D’Cruz, Direcor of Music, who is an alumnus of Pilar Music School, Goa and Trinity College of Music, London.

The harmonious evening was organised as part of the Navy Week Activites - 2014, at Siri Fort Auditorium. The Hon’ble Vice President of India Shri M. Hamid Ansari, graced the occasion as the Chief Guest.


Reports of Prime Minister to Fly in a French Fighter Jet at Aero India Denied

With reference to a news item in a section of the media that “At Aero India, PM may fly in a Rafale”, it is clarified that there is no plan for the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to fly in any fighter jet. The news item is incorrect, misconceived and is not based on facts.

It is further clarified that the conduct of Aero India, a premier aero-show of Asia, has no linkage with any of the acquisition plans pursued by the Ministry of Defence. Aero India- 2015, to be held in Bengaluru from 18 to 22 February, will witness the participation of most of the original defence equipment manufactures from across the globe. As such, the event held biennially, provides defence manufacturers to showcase their products and innovations taking in the field.


Government Decides to Infuse Rs.6990 Crores in Nine Public Sector Banks (PSBs) in the Current Year on Basis of New Criteria Based on Efficiency Parameters

Out of the current year’s budget, the Government of India has decided to infuse Rs.6990 crores in nine Public Sector Banks (PSBs) for which orders are being issued. This year, the Government of India has adopted a new criteria in which the banks which are more efficient would only be rewarded with extra capital for their equity so that they can further strengthen their position.

 The methodology for arriving the amount to be infused in these banks has been based on efficiency parameters. First of all, weighted average of return on assets (ROA) for all PSBs for last three years put together was arrived at and all those who were above the average have been considered.

            The second parameter that has been used is return on equity (ROE) for these banks for the last financial year. Those who have performed better than average have been rewarded.        As per these above mentioned  two efficiency criteria, the amount allocated bank-wise is as follows :

Name of the Bank
Amount (Rupees in crore)
State Bank of India
Bank of Baroda
Punjab National Bank
Canara Bank
Syndicate Bank
Allahabad Bank
Indian Bank
Dena Bank
Andhra Bank


 The Government of India is conscious of the fact that a lot of reforms are required in the Public Sector Banks (PSBs).  With a view to crystallize ideas for reforms, recently a two-day Retreat of CMDs of Banks and Financial Institutions called `Gyan Sangam’ was held at Pune on 1st and 2nd January, 2015.  This Retreat generated an agenda in which banks themselves were supposed to undertake certain activities individually or jointly and there were certain things which were supposed to be done by the Government.

                                                  One of the general principle adopted during the Retreat was that efficient banks should be encouraged.  For the last few years, Government of India has been infusing capital to those banks whose equity erosion has taken place.  Therefore, this year, the Government of India has adopted this new criteria in which the banks which are more efficient would only be rewarded with extra capital for their equity so that they can further strengthen their position.


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