Department of Students Welfare – Smart City Clothes Collection Drive

Faridabad, Thursday, October 29, 2015: Taking forward the MCF’s (Municipal Corporation of Faridabad) initiative of building Smart City Faridabad, Manav Rachna NSS Team along with Team Umang organised a Smart City Clothes Donation Drive. This initiative by Manav Rachna saw a huge participation from the Students and Faculty members of this prestigious institution. The students and the faculty of Manav Rachna were also able to get clothes donated by their friends, neighbours and relatives from across Delhi and NCR.

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On October 26, 2015, three students from Manav Rachna, Nishkarsh Vashistha, Lokesh Goswami and Vikash Gupta, along with RJ Swati from Radio Manav Rachna 107.8 FM reached the slum area under Badkal Flyover to distribute the donated clothes.

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Members of the NSS team distributed clothes to Men, Women, Children and elderly for about 45 minutes and were overwhelmed with the love which was given by the people in return,” said an MCF official on the Smart City Clothes Donation Drive.

This drive and the visit to the slum has further encouraged the students of Manav Rachna to conduct Smart City Collection Drive, wherein the students plan to collect and donate a variety of items – from clothes to gadgets and spectacles to in an effort to help the citizens of Faridabad gear up for the Smart City Challenge.

About MCF:

The Municipal Corporation of Faridabad (MCF), is a front-runner organization dealing with providing the civic amenities and delivering citizen services in Faridabad District of Haryana, India. MCF is a citizen centric organisation which lays total emphasis to citizen convenience and delivery of citizen services with transparency as its utmost goal.

The MCF is the leading organisation that is staking Faridabad’s claim to become a Smart City under the Smart City Mission by the Government of India. The MCF, in collaboration with the citizens of Faridabad, have started many innovative schemes and initiatives to understand the problems that the city is facing and are working hard to find solutions for the identified problems.

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What are “Smart Cities”?

new-york-1452592-640x480Cities have always been a gauge to measure development and economic growth of any country. However, it cannot be said that the development was always “smart.” An example to illustrate that point would be the fact that health conditions of workers were greatly sacrificed for greater productivity during the Industrial revolution.

Fast forward to the modern times, with all the advancement in technology and its application in day to day activities, many cities are accumulating data, delivering innovation, and enhancing lives of citizens, which are the basics for any smart city. the term “smart cities” is a bit ambiguous. There are many definitions of smart cities that are put forth by a great many number of people. Some people choose a narrow definition – that is cities that use information and communication technologies (ICT) to deliver services to their citizens. However, I believe that the most convincing definition of smart cities is that these cities use ICT to their advantage in order to become more intelligent and efficient in the use of resources, resulting in cost and energy savings, improved service delivery and quality of life, and reduced environmental footprint.london-3-1520690-640x480

It is seen that the people living in cities are economically motivated. These people are always on the lookout to take full advantage of modern technologies to further their personal and collective opportunities. This sometimes results in strain on the environment. To illustrate this point, an example would be of people using motor vehicles to commute to work. Everyone wants to reach office at the earliest, which often results in traffic congestion and also an increase in pollution levels. Well, smart cities are cities where citizens have to come up innovative ways to tackle such issues with the effective use of technology.

Citizens are not the only factors to consider in the evolution of cities into smart cities. Governmental and commercial entities are going to play increasingly important roles in development and implementation of technologies that pave the way to the smart city.

Given below are a few examples of smart cities around the world and how we can follow their examples to make Faridabad into a smart city.

Barcelona, Spain: This city scored high on the environment and smart parking.

New York City, USA: New York City scored high on smart street lighting and smart traffic management.

singapore-3-1564618-640x480London, UK: London scored high on technology and open data.

Nice, France: The French city scored high on environment and agency cohesion.

Singapore, Republic of Singapore: Singapore scored high on smart traffic management and creative use of technology.

Gandhiji’s Dream Of a Sustainable City

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A great leader and visionary, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was a strong advocate of a self-sufficient and sustainable India. For India to become self-sufficient and sustainable, its cities have to become self-sufficient and sustainable first. On the occasion of his 146th birth anniversary, lets try and achieve Gandhiji’s dream of a sustainable city.

Gandhiji was a strong proponent of ‘swadeshi’ or home economy, be it food, clothing or anything else. During the British rule in India, he promoted the swadeshi idealism by making his own clothes and asking Indians to wear and use only Indian made products. Dandi March and the Charkha Movement are prime examples of Gandhiji’s principle of swadeshi. The government of India, under Shri Narendra Modi, has started a campaign called the Make in India campaign. This campaign follows the same blueprint of manufacturing in India.

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Faridabad is one of the biggest industrial cities in India. Thinking in line with the Swadeshi and the Make in India Campaign, Faridabad can truly become a smart industrial city as it has all the required infrastructure in place. The Municipal Corporation of Faridabad (MCF) strives to convert Faridabad into a smart, self-sufficient and sustainable city, which would serve as a major hub for companies making products in India.

‘Gram swaraj,’ which means village self-rule, was an important concept in Gandhiji’s thinking. In Gandhiji’s own words, the basic concept of gram swaraj is that every village should be “independent of its neighbours for its own vital wants and yet interdependent for many others in which dependency is necessary.” Each village should be basically self-reliant, making provision for all necessities of life – food, clothing, clean water, sanitation, housing, education and so on, including government and self-defence, all socially useful amenities required by a community. To develop a city, based on Gandhiji’s model of gram swaraj, the MCF is conducting a citywide survey to build a smart city for the Faridabadians, by the Faridabadians, based on the vision of Faridabadians.

Gandhiji had long foreseen the importance of self-sufficient and sustainable city. If we understand and implement these Gandhian thoughts, we can surely succeed in making Faridabad a self-sufficient and sustainable smart city.

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