It is now exactly 2years since Rourkela has been declared as Smart city and second city after capital Bhubaneswar.
But tragically the label Smart city is now only constrained to its name. 2years as of now passed & the smart city development related projects are occurring only on pen and paper. The irony is that the citizens of Rourkela are consolidating themselves by reading newspapers every day with big headlines covering half of the pages about the upcoming projects but no one has any idea when the documented projects will take shape. Still, we’re happy to say we’re the smart city of absolutely ‘Nothing.’
It’s true that RMC is working effectively on making Rourkela an open defecation free city but citizens are getting a feeling now that the RSCL and RMC work is now only limited to ‘Theme Parks’- profoundly mentioned project in most of the meetings and official statements. Another noticeable thing is that the theme park work itself is also in the queue. If you compare both the cities Bhubaneswar and Rourkela which has been declared as a smart city in the only couple of months gap yet the sort of development and tasks are taking shape in Bhubaneswar is what makes us question RSCL.
Correctly Rourkela isn’t close at all to what Bhubaneswar has accomplished in the last 2years in smart city and another example is here!
In a question to Urban Development Minister Niranjan Pujari, Rourkela MLA Dilip Ray asked about the current situation of RMC and number of vacancies in different departments.
Sadly RMC yet to fill up even 50 per cent of the required posts and 157 posts are lying empty as per the approved strength since November 2017. Similarly as per Odisha Municipal Corporation Act, while 108 posts are required in various positions in the RMC, the actual strength now is only 27 and rest 81 are lying empty.
After 2017, the city has failed to get a noteworthy spot on the Swachh city Survekshan list. Most likely the reason is 591 vacancies in the sanitary staff position. According to the recent report of Telegraph “In the financial year 2014-15 the RMC has got more than Rs 131 crore from Central, State and other sources for various developmental activities, but only Rs 66.27 crore has been spent.”