Why are TenderSURE footpaths wide?; Chargesheet against former Fortis official; Expat experiences in Bengaluru

 

Bengaluru this week

May 21st 2015

 
 

CITIZEN MATTERS
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Oorvani Foundation had called for funds earlier this year and we were truly overwhelmed by the support we received. Several folks made online transfers without sharing the details of the transfer on mail or on the form. We have sent out the 80G receipts to those folks for whom we had complete details. In case you are yet to receive an acknowledgement, drop us a mail on foundation@oorvani.in with your name, transaction amount and date and we will get back to you.

In other news, Oorvani Foundation has also launched its first reader-funding campaign for our sister publication, India Together. If you are a reader, do consider making a contribution to support our developmental journalism. If you are not familiar with our work on India Together, do browse through the site. The campaign will run until May 31st. Click here to make a donation.

Here’s a look at the latest news from Bengaluru:

  • The Supreme Court stayed the penalty of Rs 139.85 crore that was imposed on Mantri Developers and Core Mind Software Services Pvt Ltd by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) earlier this month, on the grounds that the ‘petitioners’ argument was not considered on the basis of merit.’ The case will now go back to NGT.
  • Drive Without Borders, the group that is protesting against the atrocities meted out by the transport department in the name of collecting road tax, met with Road Transport and Highways Minister, Nitin Gadkari on May 17th to apprise him of the situation. Gadkari has assured them that he will address the issue in the Parliament.
  • The interim report on lake encroachments will be submitted on June 9 by the 11-member legislative assembly committee that is looking into the issue. The committee is looking into encroachments in nearly 1,718 lakes in Bengaluru Urban district.
  • BBMP’s survey to tabulate the number of functioning streetlights in the city has brought to light that around 15,000 of them across the eight civic zones are defunct.
  • Stolen goods that made their way to Madiwala police station were sold off by the police, without finding their way to the rightful owners. This was found out by an Assistant Commissioner of Police, who has submitted a detailed report on the issue, suspecting the involvement of  at least 10 inspectors and other lower ranked staff.
  • The Church Street blast case has been transferred to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the probe is set to start afresh.

This week’s highlight: Charge sheet filed against former official of Fortis Hospital in organ transplant case

Fortis Hospital, Bannerghatta Road. Pic: Pavan Kulkarni

Seema Rai’s case had hit the headlines in 2010, when she died after an unsuccessful pancreas transplant that was allegedly done without her consent. On May 8th, 2015, the police filed a charge sheet against a former official of Fortis Hospital Bannerghatta Road with reference to the case.

Read: Organ transplant without licence.

Tender SURE or not so sure

Many groups in Bengaluru are criticising TenderSURE projects for the extraordinary footpath width. N S Mukunda says the real issues concerning TenderSURE are different. Read: Serious issues about TenderSURE you should be worried about.

Why are the footpaths on the TenderSURE roads so wide? Why is it taking so long to build? V Ravichandar shares answers to some of the commonly asked questions about the project. Read: Why are the footpaths wide on Tender SURE roads?

Vivek Vaidyanathan offers a solution to the problem of non-maintenance of footpaths, wherein vendor spaces are auctioned and footpath maintenance is outsourced.  Read: Can there be a market-based solution to pavement design in Bengaluru?

Why are manhole covers not levelled against the roads in Bengaluru? Ashwin Mahesh says there are three reasons why, with one of them simply being that ‘a bad manhole means more work’. Read: How hard it is to make a manhole cover that is level with the road?

Apathy towards waste management

In 2008, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) rapped the then Bengaluru Municipal Corporation, and pointed out that they had not put in efforts to ensure segregation of municipal solid wastes at source, which made processing of the waste difficult. The CAG repeated the observation in their 2014 report. Nothing changed in six years! Read: Bengaluru’s historical waste-insensitivity.  

In a meeting yesterday, the BBMP in principle agreed that penalising the contractors who don’t mend their ways is the way forward. It also seemed keen on engaging with NGOs in its effort to clean the city. Read: Garbage tender documents to be online soon.

Stranger in a strange land

Many expats turn to their interests or hobbies to widen their circles. Running events in the city often see significant participation from the expat community. Pic: Runners for Life

Living in Bengaluru comes with its own set of challenges, more so if you are not a localite. What about expats then? Here’s what some of them had to say about the city and their lives here. Read: The expat experience in Bangalore.

Batt(l)ing for the city

Pic: Sanchayan Nath

You have probably read reports of the ‘snow’ on Bellandur Lake. Some of you may have seen it even. Sanchayan Nath photo-documents it as it floats on the lake, flows on to the road and becomes a plaything for young children. Read: Is it snowing in Bangalore?

Why are lakes dying in Bengaluru? What can you do about it? How does one try saving the trees? Citizen writer Sridhar says it is up to citizens to save them. Read: Story of daylight murders.

Innovation for betterment

Are you part of a group in your neighbourhood that is working towards the betterment of the area? Would you like to see your ideas through to fruition? Read:Solve problems in your neighbourhood, win prizes!

Know any individual or organisation working on ideas that can grant those with disabilities the same privileges as others? Nominate them for the Universal Design Awards by May 31st.

Are you a student with an innovative idea on how you can make your surroundings more environment-friendly? Participate in the South Asia Youth Environment Conclave.

The heroes among us

Surplus treated water from the Sewage Treatment Plant in South City apartments in Arakere, in Mico Layout, is being channelled to Puttenahalli Lake. This is the first time in Bengaluru that treated water from an apartment complex is being used to fill up one of the city’s lakes. Read: New lease of life for Puttenahalli lake.

PNLIT has something more to cheer about. Three youngsters who joined the Classes at the Lake program have secured over 70% in the II PUC exams. Read: Out triumphant trio.

Saluting the past

Legendary blues legend, BB King passed away on May 14th. In her newest post, Chitra Srikrishna offers him a fitting tribute. Read: Feeling the Blues.  

When did you start reading the newspaper? For Chandra Shekhar Balachandran, it was on December 5th, 1971, a day after papers carried the announcement about the outbreak of the Indo-Pak war. Read: Five minute world news.

Events this week

    • On the occasion of its 15th year anniversary, Alternative Law Forum is hosting a public talk on Dissent and the Quest for Justice on May 21st at St Joseph’s College.
    • Watch the German film, Meltdown, based on the lives of four graffiti artists who strike out to spray metroes with their opulent pictures night after night on May 21st at Goethe Institut.
    • Temple historian, Vatsala Iyengar will be talking about the Erotic Art of Karnataka along with a visual presentation on Khajuraho and various similar depictions from Karnataka at Bangalore International Centre on May 22nd.
    • French musician duo, L’Entourloop will be performing at Humming Tree on May 22nd. Make your way there to check out what a mashup of hip hop and reggae sounds like.
    • The fourth Kere Habba is all set to take place at the Chellakere in HRBR Layout on May 23rd. Activities include competitions, nature walks, origami, games and more.
    • Help raise funds for children from unfortunate backgrounds by attending Shankruthi, an evening of music, dance, theatre and standup comedy, on May 23rd at Ambedkar Bhavan.
    • Sample the best of local food, while learning about the history of the neighbourhood at the Russel Market food walk on May 23rd.
    • Watch The Forgotten Tigers, a documentary about the lives of tigers that live or move outside tiger reserves on May 27th at Alliance Francaise.
    • Acclaimed theatre artist Hirannaiah will be presenting Lanchavantara and Makmal Topi on May 27th at Chowdaiah Memorial Hall.This is slated to be his last performance.
    • Get your fix of laughs for the week at LOL, a evening of standup comedy, featuring some of Bengaluru’s best comedians at Urban Solace on May 27th.

Click here for the complete list of events happening in Bengaluru.

 

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