Stressing the need for citizens’ participation, President Pratibha Patil on Friday said that it is the key to good governance and better administration of cities.
Patil was speaking at the Nagar Ratna Award ceremony in the city — instituted by the All India Institute of Local Self-Government (AIILSG) — where 12 municipal corporations were presented awards, out of the 63 in the country covered under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM).
JNNURM is a massive city modernisation scheme, launched by the union government, under which funds are provided to cities for developing urban infrastructure and services. In return, the city carries out mandated reforms.
The Nagar Ratna Awards aim to recognise those municipal corporations that have performed the best in fulfilling their responsibilities towards, and need of citizens.
The overall best performer – this year, Ahmedabad municipal corporation – is presented with a trophy and cash prizes.
“A city depends as much upon its planners and administration, as on the people dwelling in it, who essentially determine its character. Hence the feeling is that for the government alone to take action is not correct,” said Patil, addressing the award ceremony, held at YB Chavan hall, south Mumbai.
“From waste management to energy and water conservation to planting trees – all these can be successful only with citizens’ participation. It is a two-way relationship between local self-government and citizens,” she said.
“Every citizen should have access to livable habitats and basic amenities like water, sanitation, transport and energy.”