To keep close surveillance, 464 CCTV cameras are being installed in Agartala Credit: File Image

Agartala: Agartala Smart City has been awarded “Award of Excellence for Innovations undertaken in Urban Transport during COVID-19” by the Ministry of Home & Urban affairs.

The award was given during the valedictory session of the 13th Urban Mobility India Conclave held virtually on Monday, said Dr Shailesh Kumar Yadav.

Speaking in a press conference, Yadav said that three cities were awarded this award, including Agartala, Bhubaneshwar and Gurugram and there are four other cities for commendation.

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“This is an award for innovations which was undertaken during this COVID lockdown and unlock period. We made a functional intelligent traffic management system and traffic violation detention centre in two major junctures of the city,” Yadav said.

He also said that this system has got a red-light violation detection system and automatic number plate recognition, which is used to detect the traffic violations as well as to track crime, criminals and everything. The traffic police have been using it since 17 August last, and already they have registered 12,700 violations, which is on an average around 150 violations per day.

“Now, we are focusing on pedestrian walk-aways, and we want to create footpaths all across the city so that people walk on the footpath instead of the road. If people walk on the footpath the vehicles would be moving freely leading to lesser accidents,” Yadav added.

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During the COVID lockdown, 5 km of the footpath was constructed, while another 46 km will be constructed as part of Agartala Smart City project shortly. To promote cycling in Agartala city, a stretch between Ramnagar 1 to 6 has been chosen which would be converted into a cycle-friendly neighbourhood.

“A survey was also conducted in this regard, and we are in the process and have participated in a competition known as Cycle-4-Change in stage one. Once we are elevated to stage two, Rs 1 crore would be sanctioned from the centre to develop the cycle interventions and make tracks for cycling”, he said.

There are a total of 66 projects, of which 35 works have been completed for which Rs 160 crore, while 13 works for Rs 143.59 crore is under progress. The projects are expected to be completed by the end of February 2023 if not delayed.

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Tenders have been completed for 100 per cent of the project which is amounting to Rs 1,038 crore, while projects which are under evaluation are of Rs 616 crore.

“A total expenditure of 182 crore has been made. The second instalment from the centre has been received from the government of India, while the third instalment would be received within this year,” Yadav added.

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