Gujarat Government
Gujarat Government

Over 12 years after the Gujarat government allotted land to construct the new city on the ravines of Sabarmati river, GIFT City is still a work in progress.

At night, as the lights dim in hundreds of small cubicles in the many gleaming glass buildings, and cars head out to take the Bypass Road towards Gandhinagar and Ahmedabad, GIFT City largely goes silent. But this was not how it was meant to be.

Conceptualised in 2007 as India’s first greenfield smart city, the plan was to have a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) coexist with a “throbbing city” where the biggest corporates would live and work, with schools, hospitals, malls and recreation zones — a self-contained, new city around 30 km from one of the oldest cities in the country, Ahmedabad, and on the fringes of capital Gandhinagar.

Yet, over 12 years after the Gujarat government allotted land to construct the new city on the ravines of Sabarmati river, GIFT City is still a work in progress. As Singapore High Commissioner Simon Wong said in April last year, GIFT City is “quite a ghost town” after working hours.

In the city to review progress on the Singapore Stock Exchange (SGX), he had said, “If you want to make it a very liveable city, you need amenities to come in, you need a supermarket. Of course, there are schools coming in already, but it is (about) the ease of living…,” adding, “It is short of… humans.”

ALSO READ  BJP will win 370 seats and NDA more than 400 seats in Lok Sabha polls said by Amit Shah...