The black waters of Bellandur lake; Is BBMP committing contempt of court?; Support systems for newly released prisoners

A special announcement

In partnership with the team from DataMeet, Oorvani Foundation launches – an urban public data portal. is a repository of city-related public data.

We invite citizens and RWAs to share the public data they may have on topics like civic, health, environment etc. Data can be local or city level, like budgets, programme of works, expenditure reports, RTI responses, DPRs etc. The site is currently in alpha, and volunteers from across cities will be adding more data. For more information, contact

This also brings us to Reason #3 about why you should support our work: We bat for transparency. For more on this, click here.

This week’s highlight:  The black waters of Bellandur lake

Pitch black water reflects the sorry state of Bellandur lake. Pic: Akshatha M

The deep waters in the heart of Bellandur lake hold the secret to what is wrong with the lake and how it can be cured. Our staff journalist, Akshatha M, accompanied a team of researchers from IISc and army personnel from MEG who have been conducting a bathymetric survey of Varthur and Bellandur lake for the last 10 days. See: Bellandur lake in pictures.

With this scientific study of the water in the lakes, there is hope that the lakes may soon see better days. Read: Citizens help kickstart scientific study of Bellandur, Varthur lakes.

BBMP failing to implement segregation at source

The BBMP continues to hunt for landfills and build plants for processing mixed waste. But the court has mandated segregation and a no-landfill policy. Is this a case fit for contempt of court?

BBMP has often said citizens not segregating waste will be fined. But is there a strict penalty policy and process? Read: The secret behind BBMP’s inability to regulate mixed waste in Bengaluru.

Also see: NGT order on plastic ban.

Life outside prison

For newly released prisoners, rehabilitation is key to avoid social stigma and financial problems. What are Karnataka’s policies to support them? Read: When a better life seems a distant dream for released convicts.

Also read: Out of jail, life is a roller coaster for these released prisoners.

Ideas at work

Ashwin Mahesh talks about how contracts are awarded, and why it’s necessary to rethink the public procurement process. Read:

When rescue is not an option

An injured baby kite. Pic: Deepa Mohan

Ever come across an injured animal or bird that you cannot help? It is at these times that one is reminded how cruel nature can be. Read: When rescue is not an option.

On the road

Our youngest blogger travels from North to South Bengaluru for his internship. Here’s what he observes. Read: Tales from the South Side.

News you can use

  • BBMP which already looks after 86 lakes, is set to take an additional 22 lakes under its control. It has been reported that the BDA, which is finding it difficult to develop and maintain these lakes, has decided to hand them over to BBMP.

  • As the plastic ban is in force, BBMP has decided to make Rama Navami festival plastic-free this year. Solid Waste Management Joint Commissioner Sarfaraz Khan has issued a circular banning the use of plastic cups and plates for serving panaka and kosambari during the month-long festival celebration.

  • This year’s Bengaluru Karaga is going to be cracker-free. Following the fire-cracker tragedy in a Kerala temple, the festival management committee has decided not to burst crackers this season. Typically, crackers worth Rs 1 lakh are burst every year.

  • After Maharashtra, it’s now Karnataka’s turn. A PIL has been filed by an advocate called Diwakar in the High Court asking that the IPL matches scheduled at Chinnaswamy Stadium be moved out of the state, in the backdrop of drought.

  • While there were assurances given that Tender SURE roads would not be dug up, a stretch of nearly 100 metres of the newly laid footpath on Residency Road has been dug up by a contractor to facilitate water connection to a school. The road was dug up to give Cauvery water connection to St Joseph’s Boys School, as BWSSB made an inordinate delay to approve the water connection. The school had applied for water connection while the road work was in its initial stage.

  • BDA has floated a tender for erecting 14 feet bronze statue of Kempe Gowda in the middle of Hebbal flyover. Rs 50 lakh will be spent on building the statue that will weigh 2,759 kg.

Events this week

 Theatre: K-Pax at Alliance Francaise on April 17th

  • Bangalore International Centre is hosting a talk, Great Triumphs and False Stories, an analysis of the chequered histories of science in India and Europe on April 14th.

  • Artist Matthias (Matze) Einhoff will be giving a lecture on Public Art – new forms of artistic social practice at Goethe Institut on April 14th.

  • Spot on bangaloREsidents, the launch event for the 2016 batch of bangaloREsidents at Goethe Institut is on April 15th.

  • Once upon a time in Chamrajpete, a heritage walk to the first extension to Bengaluru city by the Mysore Maharaja is happening on April 16th.

  • INTACH Bangalore is hosting a workshop on Art and Architecture of Nandi Temples on April 16th to celebrate World Heritage Day.

  • Watch Pierrot le Fou, a French movie directed by Jean-Luc Godard is being screened at Suchitra Cinema and Cultural Academy on April 16th.

  • Yelahanka Puttenahalli Lake and Bird Conservation Trust has called for a discussion: How sewage can be an alternative input to maintain water level in lakes at IISc on April 16th.

  • Get a glimpse into temple rituals practised in India at Naada Nrithya Vaibhoga, an all day festival of music and dance at Malleswaram on April 16th.

  • Fill your bellies with yummy goodies at the Frazer Town Food Walk on April 16th.

  • K-Pax, a science-fiction psychological drama that explores human acceptance and how rigidly we hold on to our notions is being staged at Alliance Francaise on April 17th.

To know more about events in Bengaluru, click here.

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The News Desk at Citizen Matters puts out Press Releases, notifications and curated information useful to the urban reader.