India Smart Cities Award Contest (ISAC) 2023

The India Smart Cities Award Contest (ISAC) is organized under the Smart Cities Mission, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India. This is one of the important activities initiated under the Mission, where pioneering city strategies, projects, and ideas are recognized based on innovation, impact, and replicability/scalability.

On the occasion of completing 6 successful years of the Smart Cities Mission, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) declared the Smart City awards results for 2020 on June 25, 2021. Indore and Surat are declared as the smartest cities of India.

In this article, we shall discuss at length the winners of smart cities awards 2020 in different States and Union Territories. Aspirants preparing for the upcoming IAS Exam and other competitive exams must go through the winners’ list, important from the examination perspective.

Smart Cities India Awards 2020 [UPSC Notes]:-Download PDF Here

Get acquainted with the UPSC Syllabus at the linked article and refer to the links below to complement your exam preparation:

Urban Planning in India Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana
AIR Spotlight – Smart Cities and Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana Sponge Cities Mission In India

About the Smart Cities Award by MoHUA

  • Smart Cities India 2022 Awards is a unique platform designed to felicitate, recognize and encourage individuals, policymakers, companies, municipalities, government bodies, and associations to illuminate the work done across both urban and rural sectors.
  • The awards are given across the themes of Social Aspects, Governance, Culture, Urban Environment, Sanitation, Economy, Built Environment, Water, Urban Mobility
  • The ISAC recognizes and rewards cities, projects, and innovative ideas that promote sustainable development in urban areas in India, as well as stimulate inclusive, equitable, safe, healthy, and collaborative cities, thus enhances the quality of life for all
  • Recently, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA), Government of India, in collaboration with Surat Smart City Corporation Development Ltd., organised a “Smart Cities, Smart Urbanization” conference in Surat in April 2022, under the clarion call of Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav (AKAM).
  • An awards ceremony was held during this conference to recognise the winners of the India Smart Cities Awards Contest (ISAC) 2020. When the list of winners was revealed in 2021, the award event was postponed owing to the ongoing COVID-19 issue.
  • Surat and Indore were named Best Cities, and Uttar Pradesh was named Best State.
  • As per the results released on June 25, 2021, the Smart Cities Mission has made physical and financial progress in the country. And as per the recent update, the following details can be derived:
Sector Completed In Progress
No. of Projects Cost (in Crores) No. of Projects Cost (in Crores)
Integrated Command and Control Centre 70 8,100 18 2,991
Smart Roads 310 5,362 459 21,518
Smart Solar 57 563 38 482
Smart Water 101 5,081 185 18,146
PPP 123 4,420 178 25,049
Vibrant Public Places 72 1,662 76 8,551

Apart from the rankings which are released based on the database collected within India, there are various other global Indices where India’s development is measured on certain specific criteria. Aspirants can refer to the latest Global Indices & India’s Ranking in 2023 at the linked article.

Candidates can also visit the States’ Startup Rankings in India page, and read in detail about an evaluation tool aimed to strengthen the support of States and UTs to holistically build their startup ecosystems.

Kickstart your UPSC preparation now and complement it with the links given below:

Highlights of the Smart Cities, Smart Urbanisation Conference

Along with the award distribution certain new announcements to launch new initiatives were made:

  • Launch of a ‘virtual hub for collaborations on urban transformation’ in partnership between the Smart Cities Mission and the World Economic Forum.
    • The World Economic Forum and the Smart Cities Mission have collaborated to create a “virtual platform for collaboration on urban transformations.” The hub will use new technology and ideas to turn Indian cities into centres of inclusive, sustainable, and resilient growth.
  • Inauguration of ‘Amaro Padosh’:
    • Surat Municipal Corporation and the Smart Cities Mission created a temporary, life-size neighbourhood of 30,000 square feet at the SIECC venue, complete with public amenities such as a park, anganwadi, public health centre, municipal school, bus stop with cycle stand, food plaza, EV charging station, and handloom shop.The objective was s to provide a ‘learning by experiencing’ opportunity to attendees participating in the event.
  • Launch of Urban Outcomes Framework 2022, AI Playbook for Cities, and AMPLIFI Portal:
      • The Urban Outcomes Framework 2022, Artificial Intelligence Playbook for Cities, and AMPLIFI – Assessment and Monitoring Platform for Liveable, Inclusive, and Future-Ready Urban India, which is MoHUA’s integrated data platform, were all introduced under the Smart Cities Mission. 
      • The objective is to develop a platform that provides several chances for continuing to create and promote the use of data that solves complicated urban concerns.
      • The AI Playbook is a guideline for cities to use to apply Artificial Intelligence solutions to tackle complicated urban concerns.
      • These resources shall be extremely useful, not only to the 100 Smart Cities, but can also be adopted by other cities across the country, making the Smart Cities Mission to Movement.
  • Digital Governance Pavilion- Empowering communities with data and digital technology:
    • At the Smart Cities Smart Urbanization Conference, the ‘Digital Duniya’ pavilion was inaugurated to demonstrate efforts that empower communities via data and digital technology. Initiatives made by the 100 smart cities to develop a healthy ecosystem fueled by ICT interventions were highlighted. 
  • Climate-Smart Cities Pavilion – To build climate actions in cities:
    • The Cafe, a pavilion, is an experiential platform hosting 7 case clinics, 4 donor meets, interactive gaming, an interactive data wall, a photo exhibit and much more.
  • Innovation Bazaar Pavilion – Defining and solving societal issues:
    • Innovation Bazaar pavilion at the conference showcased cutting-edge solutions for urban challenges, and through myriad activities, expert dialogues and living lab deployments provided the visitors with a paradigm-shifting experience in urban innovation. 
  • Smart Finance Pavilion- Cities as Drivers of the Nation’s Wealth:
    • The Smart Finance pavilion named ‘finance ka adda’ focuses on innovation in urban finance helping cities identify untapped sources of revenue. 
    • The pavilion showcases an exhibition of more than 20 successful and innovative PPP projects of Smart Cities Mission, a section with MUNIFY (where ULBs can know their budgets and finance overviews), Invest India Grid section, National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP), and an Output and Outcome Monitoring Framework (OOMF) Clinic.

List of Winners – India Smart Cities Awards Contest 2020

All the 100 smart cities are evaluated based on various factors and then the list of smart cities awardees is released.

Along with the regular city, state, UTs and other themes based on which awards are given, there were a few new themes for ISAC 2020. These included the Sustainable Business model of ICCC and Innovation award, especially in COVID Management. Given below is the list of winners for 2020:

City Award
Overall Winner Indore and Surat
Round 1 (Round-wise Recognition) 1st – Indore

1st – Surat

3rd – Jabalpur

Round 2 +FT (Round-wise Recognition) 1st – Agra

2nd – Tirupati

3rd – Varanasi

Round 3 (Round-wise Recognition) 1st – Dehradun

2nd – Sagar

3rd – Tirunelveli

Round 4 (Round-wise Recognition) Erode
Smart CitiesLeadership Award 1st – Ahmedabad

2nd – Varanasi

3rd – Ranchi

State/UT Award
State Award 1st – Uttar Pradesh

2nd – Madhya Pradesh

3rd – Tamil Nadu

UT Award Chandigarh
Project Awards
Theme/Aspect Winners Project
Social Aspects 1st – Tirupati Health Benchmark for Municipal Schools
2nd – Bhubaneshwar Socially Smart Bhubaneswar
3rd – Tumakuru Digital Library Solution
Build Environment 1st – Indore Chappan Dukan
2nd – Surat Canal Corridor
3rd – Erode Micro-composting network
Sanitation 1st – Tirupati Bioremediation and BioMining
1st – Indore Municipal Waste Management System
3rd – Surat Conservation through Treated Wastewater
Culture 1st – Indore Conservation of Heritage
1st – Chandigarh Capitol Complex, Heritage Project
3rd – Gwalior Digital Museum
Economy 1st – Indore Carbon Credit Financing Mechanism
2nd – Tirupati Boost Local Identity & Economy through Design Studio
2nd – Agra Micro Skill Development Centres
Governance 1st – Vadodara GIS at Vadodara
2nd – Thane Digi Thane
3rd – Bhubaneshwar ME App
Urban Environment 1st – Bhopal Clean energy
2nd – Chennai Restoration of water bodies
3rd – Tirupati Renewable Energy Generation
Urban Mobility 1st – Aurangabad Majhi Smart Bus
2nd – Surat Dynamic Scheduling of Buses
3rd – Ahmedabad Automated Parking System
Water 1st – Dehradun Smart Water Metering Water ATM
1st – Varanasi Eco-Restoration of Assi River
3rd – Surat Integrated and Sustainable Water Supply System
Sustainable Business Model Agartala ICCC
Innovative Idea Award Indore Carbon Credit Financing Mechanism
COVID Innovation Award Joint Winners – Kalyan-Dombivali and Varanasi
COVID Innovation Award (Round-wise) Round 1 – Chennai

Round 2 – Kalyan-Dombivali and Varanasi

Round 3 – Bengaluru

Round 4 – Saharanpur

UPSC 2023

Report & Results on Completion of 6 years of Smart City Mission [As On June 25, 2021]

Of the total proposed projects under the Smart City Mission, 5,924 projects worth Rs. 1,78,500 crore have been tendered so far, work orders have been issued for 5,236 projects worth Rs. 1,46,125 crore. 2,665 projects worth Rs. 45,080 crores have also been fully completed and are operational (as of 23 June 2021).

  • Climate-Smart Cities Assessment Framework 2.0 – Launched in September 2020 with an aim to provide an overarching roadmap to formulate, implement and monitor urban climate actions in India
  • Data Maturity Assessment Framework 2.0 – To understand the maturity and readiness of cities in implementing the DataSmart Cities Strategy and to better recognize and capture the achievements of cities in the field of data, the 2nd cycle of the Data Maturity Assessment Framework was launched in November 2020
    • As for 2020, 42 cities have attained a certification level under Data Maturity Assessment Framework 2.0 – out of which top 4 cities – Surat, Pimpri Chinchwad, Bhopal and Pune – have been certified as ‘Connected’, 8 cities are at ‘Enabled’, 11 at ‘Explorer’ level and 19 cities at the ‘Initiator’ level
  • India Smart Cities Fellows Report – For 2020-21, 46 Fellows spent their tenure developing 13 projects to impact the sectors of spatial planning, citizen engagement, tourism, local economies, urban mobility, environment, disaster management, water, education, migration, and health
  • TULIP Report – TULIP is a platform to connect graduates to Urban Local Bodies and Smart Cities to co-create new solutions for our cities. It was launched in June 2020, in partnership with the All Indian Council for Technical Education (AICTE)

(Report Information Source:

Smart Cities India Awards 2020 [UPSC Notes]:-Download PDF Here

Frequently Asked Questions on Smart Cities Award India


Q 1. Which is the smartest city in India in 2020?

Ans. Indore and Surat were jointly announced as the smartest cities in India for 2020.

Q 2. Which is the smartest city in the world?

Ans. As per IMD’s inaugural Smart City Index, Singapore is the smartest city in the world.

Candidates can have a look at the various government exams conducted in the country at the linked article and accordingly start their exam preparation.

Visit BYJU’S and get updated with the latest exam notifications and study material for exam preparation.

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