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Established in 1926, AIILSG is a premier autonomous research and training institution in India. Headquartered in the business capital of India – Mumbai, it operates through its 45 centres situated across the length and breadth of the country. A range of regular training courses provided by the Institute serve as a guiding force for urban management, municipal administration, sanitation, municipal finance and other areas of operations for running a city efficiently. The Institute has been organizing capacity building training programs for elected representatives and municipal officials and helping cities to improve the quality of civic services rendered to citizens.

Urban Dialogues, a roundtable series, is an initiative of the All India Institute of Local Self-Government (AIILSG). The aim is to set the next-gen urban agenda for the existing and evolving urban habitats. The conference brings together academicians, policymakers, urban planners, business  leaders, representatives of civil society organisations and other intelligentsia from urban sector to find sustainable solutions for the problems cities face today. Each conference focuses on laying a roadmap for building better urban future for a city that is facing certain urban issues. We submit a report, based on expert comments and outcomes of the conference, to the Urban Development Ministry, state governments, municipal corporations and media. Urban Dialogues conferences witness participation of policymakers, urban planners, city managers, representatives of civil society, builders and financial institutions. Urban Update magazine also publishes a special  feature detailing the outcomes of the conference.

Bhopal is the 14th largest and third greenest city in India. It is popularly known as the city of lakes with fourteen lakes making it a tourist attraction. The plenty of heritage buildings and centers for art and culture such as Bharat Bhavan or National Museum of Man, tourism is a major attraction in Bhopal. Three UNESCO sites within 50 km of the city and further add to the potential for tourism.

Bhopal is spreading fast beyond its planning area. Currently, population of 2 million is spread across of 450 sq km of municipal area and planning area of 800 sq km. The urban sprawl in Bhopal needs to be controlled. Unplanned sprawl is posing serious challenges to infrastructure sustainability.

The city was selected among the first twenty Indian cities to be developed as a smart city under the Smart Cities Mission. Smart City Bhopal envisions to create a sustainable city that can provide good quality of life to its residents. The vision is to transform Bhopal into a smart, connected and eco-friendly city that can focus on education, research, entrepreneurship, and tourism. The city ranked third in best  overnance and administrative practices by Janagraha, a non-profit organization that aims to strengthen democracy in India by working for citizen participation in urban local government. It is also ranked 27th least polluted cities amongst 102 cities in Asia. Bhopal is doing good work in many areas of urban operations. Waste is segregated at source and door-to-door collection is being done at ward level in Bhopal. Safe City Monitoring Project provides surveillance systems in 150 locations across city with a centralized control room.

Travel demands are rising rapidly. The high growth rate of vehicular population and fewer modes of local transport with lesser coverage area are leading to congestion. Rigorous foundation work is required at the municipal or city level for simplification of regulations, streamlining of administrative procedures and optimization of city operations across domains.


Timing: 0900-0930 hrs

Timing: 0930-1045 hrs

Welcome Address                                                               Mr. Rajiv Agarwal, IAS (Retd.)
                                                                                                         Director General, AIILSG
Lighting of Lamp                                                                Chief Guest and other dignitaries
AIILSG Bhopal                                                                     Mr. NB Lohani, IAS (Retd.)
                                                                                                        Advisor, AIILSG
Theme Address                                                                     Mr. Abhilash Khandekar
                                                                                                         Senior Journalist
Special Guest Address                                                     Mr. B Vijay Datta
                                                                                                         Municipal Commissioner, Bhopal
Special Guest Address                                                     Mr. Alok Sharma
                                                                                                         Mayor of Bhopal
Special Guest Address                                                     Mr. PC Sharma
                                                                                                         Minister of Law & Public Relations
                                                                                                         Government of Madhya Pradesh
Chief Guest Address                                                          Mr. Jaivardhan Singh
                                                                                                         Minister of Urban Development and Housing
                                                                                                         Government of Madhya Pradesh
Vote of Thanks                                                                      Mr. Abhishek Pandey
                                                                                                          Editor Urban Update, AIILSG

Timing: 1045-1100 hrs

Timing: 1100-1300 hrs

Talking Points

  • Imperatives for Steering Smart City Development in Bhopal
  • Synergizing the efforts from government, industry players and civil society
  • Integrating development needs of Old and New Bhopal
  • Significance of data collection, analysis in improving basic civic services
  • The Way Forward
Chair                                                                                Ms. Nirmala Buch
                                                                                              Former Chief Secretary, Madhya Pradesh
Speakers                                                                         Mr. Pashim Tewari
                                                                                              Technical Director, AIILSG
                                                                                              Mr. Sanjay Kumar
                                                                                              CEO, Bhopal Smart City
                                                                                              Harish Bhavnani
                                                                                              Bhopal Citizen Forum

Timing: 1300-1345 hrs


Timing: 1345-1545 hrs

Talking Points

  • Sustainable Bhopal: Balancing development and environmental requirements
  • City of Lakes: The state of water bodies in Bhopal
  • Innovative strategies towards organized public transport
  • Civic Society and Government: Requirement for the Dialogues
  • The Way Forward
Chair                                                                        Mr. Anthony de Sa, I.A.S (Retd.)
                                                                                      Chairman, RERA
Speakers                                                                 Jitendra Singh Raje
                                                                                     Director, EPCO
                                                                                     Mr. Ravindra Saxena, IFS (Retd.)
                                                                                     Mr. Wariq Husain
                                                                                     Chairmain, CREDAI, Madhya Pradesh
                                                                                    Dr. Prakash Seth
                                                                                     Former Secretary, MPPCB
                                                                                     Dr. Arun Paliwal
                                                                                     Joint Director, Finance, UADD
                                                                                     Manoj singh
                                                                                     Director, Skill & Training, MPTB

Timing: 1545-1600 hrs

Timing: 1600-1730 hrs

Chair                                                     Mr. Rajiv Agarwal (Retd. IAS)
                                                                  Director Genenral, AIILSG
Special Guest                                  Rajyvardhan Singh (MLA, DHAR)
Speakers                                             Mr. B. Vijay Datta
                                                                  Municipal Commissioner
                                                                  Mr. Ashok Wankhade
                                                                  Managing Editor, Urban Update
                                                                  Ravi Ranjan Guru
                                                                  Deputy Director General, AIILSG
Vote of Thanks                               Kumar Dhananjay
                                                                  Consulting Editor, Urban Update


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