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Speak up, it’s your city!
Are you interested in contributing your bit to civic journalism for Bengaluru? Oorvani Foundation is looking for a volunteer to proofread material published in Citizen Matters every day. You need to be proficient in English, and be able to spend 30 minutes to an hour every day. If you are interested, drop us a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get back to you. Thanks!
Also, in case you are yet to take the BBMP pre-poll survey, please do so. The survey will be open until August 10th. Available in English and Kannada.
This week’s highlight: Issues with BBMP’s garbage tenders
Manual handling of garbage
CIVIC, an NGO based in Bengaluru, lists the problems in the new BBMP garbage tenders floated a month ago. The NGO suggests that garbage bins should exist on streets.
Read: Here’s what the BBMP’s new garbage tenders are lacking.
A step forward for citizen safety
The Bangalore City Police, in collaboration with Amnesty International, launched the ‘Ready to Report’ campaign to empower women in the city to report sexual violence with safety and dignity. Read: ‘Your Police’ to make it easy for Bangaloreans to report sexual violence.
What is an FIR and when does one need to file it? And how? Here’s our attempt to demystify the process for Bangaloreans and help cope with the unwelcome contingency. Read: All about filing FIRs in Bengaluru.
Living in the city
The Centre for Internet and Society registered its dissent over the new DNA Bill draft, and explains how it does not address privacy concerns. Read: DNA Bill is a recipe for disaster.
Here’s a brief summary of some news you might have missed out on in the last few days – GPS has been made mandatory for school vehicles, and government to give out grants for work published in Kannada. Read: Bruhat Buzz.
A tribute to the People’s President
Dr APJ Abdul Kalam. Pic: Wikimedia Commons
On July 27th India lost a kindred soul, scientist and former President, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam. Citizen Matters reached out to Bangaloreans to ask them to share their fondest memories of Dr Kalam. Read: Remembering the man who touched many lives with a smile.
On the road
The Chief Secretary has said that the government would help telecom service providers get ‘speedy clearance’ for laying Optical Fibre Cables (OFCs). RK Misra questions the decision. Is the govt promise of quick permissions to TELCOs going to be a pain?
The Wired One. Pic: Vikas Tripathi
What are the things you notice on your long commute to work? Here’s a humorous take on something that we cross every day – road dividers! In pictures: The seven deadly dividers in Whitefield.
Whitefield residents will protesting peacefully on Saturday August 1st to force BBMP to do their job. Read: “Better roads and civic amenities first, and votes next!” say citizens.
The way forward
Ashwin Mahesh opines that using CSR funds for city improvement projects would help build a different kind of city, one where citizens are responsible for managing local problems. Read: Here’s why using CSR money for public good is the need of the hour.
Though Ganesha Chaturthi is still months away, sales of idols have already begun. Here’s how you can make sure you get an eco-friendly Ganesha this year.
Food for thought
Social media has increasingly become a space of extremes. Divya Sreedharan explains how social media brings out the both the best and the worst in people. Read: Not so ‘social’ any more.
Holly Thorpe, our intern from University of Washington toured the state and got some unexpected attention due to her complexion. Here’s what she’s learned from the stares and photos. When ideas of skin colour and identity are challenged.
Heroes in our midst
On July 26th, around 150 students from Seshadripuram PU College, Yelahanka come forward to clean up Allalasandra lake. Read: Students volunteer to help maintain Allalasandra Lake.
Celebrating our heritage
Citizens stand around the line that marks the old boundary of Tip’s fort. Pic: Holly Thorpe
Last Friday, Bengaluru’s history buffs got together in the dead of the night for a heritage party. What really went on? Bangaloreans paint Tipu’s fort red.
In other news…
- Governor Vajubhai R Vala returned the BBMP restructuring bill to the State government, after the state assembly sent it to him last week. The file was returned with a note to reserve the Bill for Presidential assent.The Bill will now be placed before an inter-ministerial consultation at the Centre before sending it to the President. The President will get three months to approve or disapprove the Bill. In this case, the BBMP election could be halted only if the President approves the Bill before August 3rd (the day of election notification), which is reportedly unlikely to happen.
- The State government which had filed a petition in the Supreme Court seeking clarification on the BBMP election date has withdrawn its petition. This has put an end to the month-long legal battle. With these developments, the BBMP polls are almost certain to be held on August 22.
- The Competition Commission of India (CCI) passed an order on Wednesday, against the dubbing ban that was enforced in Karnataka. CCI also imposed fines on Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce, Karnataka Television Association and Kannada Film Producers Association for preventing the release of dubbed films and TV serials in Kannada.
- The Special Investigation Team appointed in the Karnataka Lokayukta corruption case has arrested Lokayukta Bhaskar Rao’s son Ashwin Rao and Lokayukta Joint Commissioner Syed Riyaz for their suspected involvement in the extortion racket. Ashwin is the prime-accused in the extortion complaint filed by a government executive engineer M N Krishnamurthy.
- The High Court has taken note of an increasing number of dengue and chikungunya cases in the city and has directed BBMP to take up fogging across the city. The bench expressed its dissatisfaction over the measures taken by BBMP to control mosquitoes and directed the Urban Development Secretary to take steps for mosquito control.
- Vaman Acharya resigned from his post as Chairman of Karnataka State Pollution Control Board, 53 days before the end of his three-year tenure, owing to personal reasons. However, he will continue to hold the post, till a new Chairman is appointed.
- KAS officer K Mathai, BBMP Assistant Commissioner (Advertisement) who was in the news for recommending a CBI probe into the advertising scam in BBMP, has been given additional charge as the Deputy Commissioner of Markets.
Events this week
- What does it take to manage electoral rolls. PG Bhat, NC Muniyappa, Dr A Ravindra and Nitin Pai will be participating in a panel discussion on the topic on July 31st at Bangalore International Centre.
- Watch One, a theatre festival featuring five one-woman plays at Alliance Francaise between July 31st and August 2nd.
- Make your way to Goethe Institut on August 1st for Gender Bender, a multimedia showcase featuring 10 artists who will be relooking and reimagining the ‘idea’ of gender and gender equality.
- The Vasanth Nagar Residents Welfare Association is organising the Namma Park fundraiser at Watsons on August 2nd. Bands like Pineapple Express and Rainburn will be performing.
- Attend the reading of The Love Song of J Robert Oppenheimer, a play that explores the history of the father of the atomic bomb, using the framework of a literary classic at Alliance Francaise on August 2nd.
- Register for the Skyscraper Dash to make your way to the top of 32-storey World Trade Centre by simply running up the stairs. Registrations close on August 2nd.
- Bangalore International Centre is hosting a talk on Geo-politics and Financial Markets with Srinivas Pulavarti and Eric Savage on August 3rd.
Click here for the complete list of events in Bengaluru.