Project Mumbai, in partnership with the Government of Maharashtra, brought together Public and Private sector influencers of India and of course the Mumbai Metropolitan Region for an independent, time-bound and outcome-oriented conference, aimed at arriving at action points for the next five years, to benefit Mumbai and its residents.
The conference was themed around three central verticals.
- How we grow – which discussed Upgrading infrastructure in a time-bound manner
- How we earn – focusing on Boosting economic activity and creating more jobs
- How we live – Which dealt in depth on the Quality of Life and Better living
The Chief Minister, Mr. Devendra Fadnavis sat through for the entire duration of the seven hour conference, as a front bencher taking notes and as the panellists finished outlining what the city needs, he then presented his action plan.
For session wise details of the conference you can click here.
Was there one highlight of the action-oriented conference? No, to speak of. There were plenty.
The outcome and agenda was needless to say, in the interest of the people of Mumbai.
Each of the speakers, influencers who responded to a call to Action by Project Mumbai, on what they can do for the MMR (Mumbai Metropolitan Region) added their might and support to the discussion.
Union Ministers from Delhi, Surface Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari and Industry, Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu shared what they can do, even as Cricketer and Bharat Ratna, Sachin Tendulkar, Adi Godrej, Gautam Singhania, Rajneesh Kumar, Ashish Chauhan, Noel Tata, Narinder Nayar, Shyamal Mukherjee, Hazem Galal, heads of various public and private sector institutions, listened in rapt.
Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog, played a deft moderator to the Session on How we grow, neatly ensuring that the conversation between him and other Mumbai heavyweights , Municipal Commissioner (MCGM) Ajoy Mehta, Metropolitan Commissioner R A Rajeev, Private sector captains SN Subrahmanyan (CEO, Larsen and Toubro) and Sanjay Reddy (Chairman, GVK) is sharp and focussed and decisive.
Banker Uday Kotak (Chairman, Kotak Mahindra Bank), showed his heart beats for Mumbai and urged the Chief Minister, who was all ears, not to give away an inch of land to other states on financial growth. Kalpana Morparia, CEO and MD, JP Morgan, Ravi Raheja, Group President, K Raheja Corp, Sanjay Nayar, CEO and MD, KKR (who promised his weekends for Mumbai’s development issues) gave another clarion call for the private sector to support the state in its initiatives. They all promised support to Project Mumbai in all their initiatives (more on this in the next two weeks).
Praveen Pardeshi, Additional Chief Secretary, Maharashtra and part of the CMO, outlined what he felt were the Government’s priorities and how collaborations can pave the way for a better future.
The conference was primarily themed around focusing on a better quality of life for Mumbaikars. This was session three. Ronnie Screwvala, Chairman Swades foundation and who has helmed many initiatives for the region, steered the discussion, concerns and eventually solutions, echoed by India’s Badminton coach Pulella Gopichand, Environmentalist Bittu Sehgal, Youth icon and business baron Ritesh Agarwal of Oyo rooms, Ashish Hemrajani who has revolutionised retail trade through Bookmyshow.com and Maharashtra’s Principal Secretary, Culture, Bhushan Gagrani, who reemphasized on the importance of Mumbai as a tourism destination.
Mumbai 2.0 brought on stage not the actor but the tactical businessman and doting father Shah Rukh Khan on stage, engaging in a tete-e-tete with the Chief Minister. SRK confessed that the CM was his 4 am friend to whom he turned to in crisis or when he felt lonely.
This was in response to a commitment made by the Chief Minister to Project Mumbai, on the need for setting up a helpline on Counselling focusing on the challenges faced by the elderly, especially loneliness. (Please read Mission Mumbai for details).
The Chief Minister Mr. Fadnavis played with a straight bat, honest to the core, forthright, and candid. He outlined his action plan (which he said would be taken up by the Chief Minister’s War Room) and then, responded to every query, appreciative or critical, that was pointed at him.
There were specifics on issues which he was frank to admit he was unaware of and urged the respondent to bring it to him so that a solution could be thought of.
He provided the much needed clarity on grey areas which emerged from some questions and assured solutions or many, including the need to focus on pedestrian spaces, citizen issues, health areas, transport and mobility, apart from environmental concerns.
Mumbai 2.0 would not be possible without the support of the Fellows from the Chief Minister’s Office, Janak Shah and Shiv Seth and the team, led by OSD, Kaustubh Dhavse.
The content could not have been richer, had it not been for the support of Knowledge Partner PwC, led by Manish Agarwal and supported by Sangeetha Raghuram, Alpesh, Nikhil Pande and team. Project Mumbai is also thankful to Mumbai First as knowledge partner.
Tata Trusts, Reliance Foundation, K Raheja Corp, Larsen and Toubro, GVK, Bright Outdoor, MMRDA, CIDCO provided the much needed back up to ensure the planning and execution was flawless.
Last but most critically was the support of team Project Mumbai. Back end pillars. Rimple and Ramona. And the Advisory Board team of Jalaj Dani, Ridham Desai, Mrugank Paranjape and Sanjay Panwalkar, who were the constants at every step, offering guidance, support and strength.
Mumbai 2.0 was not an event. It is about drawing up an agenda.
Project Mumbai has taken up several issues emerging from the discussion and also following up on the commitments made by the influencers in response to the Call to Action. Some of these are taking shape in the form of initiatives and some, as Mission Mumbai.