A street wall in Kohima Credit: EastMojo image

Kohima: The Kohima Smart City Development Limited (KSCDL) bagged the award for this year’s ET Government Global Smart Cities Forum 2020 under the category ‘Best Digital Initiative of the Year (Technology)’. KSCDL CEO Kovi Meyase said that the award is for the “Kohima City Wifi Phase I Project”.

“It is quite encouraging to see that for a city with a projected population of about 1 Lakh, 3,602 users have registered till date, and data usage is currently running in double-digit Terabytes,” Meyase informed.

The Wi-Fi project was kicked off in August last year and later launched in November, setting a record time of four months. Meyase said that the main objective of the project is to provide internet access in public locations at a cheaper rate.

“It provides instant access to data for emergency services with real-time updates with better coverage for emergency services”, he said further adding that the project also aims to accelerate the delivery of e-Governance services and initiate e-Commerce opportunities to the locals.

Meyase said that there is a need to increase citizen access to technology and information as it paves way for more opportunities and capabilities to compete both locally and globally.

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“IT infrastructure will enable IoT and establish a platform for the smart city with innovative smart solutions such as pan-city fire emergency solutions, smart offices, entertainment, smart street lighting, smart Kiosks, smart traffic management, etc to turn Kohima into a more tourist-friendly place,” he added.

Wi-Fi Hotspots in 51 locations in Kohima along with two smart Kiosks were activated as part of the Kohima Wi-Fi Phase 1 Project. “In a hilly terrain like Kohima where 3G/4G data become inconsistent, the Wi-Fi hotspots provide alternative internet connectivity to citizens and tourists,” he said.

He also informed that the key highlight were the massive data usage at Naga Hospital by COVID positive patients and frontline workers along with the high usage in areas, one at the Smart Kiosk which is opposite to Oking Hospital and the other at Kohima Raj Bhavan area.

The administrator said that the unique innovation in the project involved customized smart kiosks installed in two locations of Kohima. The kiosks featured a locally branded user interface where visitors access information about restaurants, hotels, and places to visit in Kohima. “On clicking the page, each venue has a QR Code which upon scanning using a smartphone, the Google Map location of that particular place automatically appears on the user’s smartphone.

Further, he added that the ET Government Global Smart Cities Forum 2020 has been instituted to recognize the outstanding work done by the government and private entities to transform smart cities into citizen-friendly futuristic cities. He said that it focused on celebrating innovative ideas, smart governance, sustainable solutions, and cutting-edge execution that enrich the overall lives and experience of citizens.

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