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It is game time in Bengaluru with the State Election Commission declaring BBMP elections. If all goes according to plan, the city may just have a new BBMP council by this time, next month. For the next couple of weeks, Citizen Matters will be presenting an in depth coverage of the elections – the latest news and updates, who is contesting from where, and much more. Keep a track of our special BBMP Elections coverage.
Here are the top stories from Bangalore for this week:
- Revenue officers in Bengaluru are on mass leave today to protest against threats made out to them by the real estate mafia, and the lack of action by the police to counter the threats.
- Those looking to buy property in Bengaluru can now look up its authenticity online, with the Survey, Settlements and Land Records department putting up land records online. This will enable citizens to locate a property on Google Maps and verify its land records.
- The bribe scandal at Lokayukta office has taken an ugly turn, with Lokayukta Bhaskar Rao issuing an order suspending the probe on the bribery charges ordered by Upa Lokayukta Justice Subhash Adi. Lokayukta’s son Ashwin Rao has denied any involvement and showed an alibi for himself on the day the alleged crime was committed.
- Karnataka government wants to set up a network of 50 TenderSURE roads in central Bengaluru. With 17 more roads, a network of pavements is expected to form in the city centre.
- A group of 14-year-old girls from a Bengaluru-school has won Technnovation 2015, an international competition where students were required to develop mobile apps to solve problems in their communities. Their app, Sellixo, allows citizens to sell and buy dry waste.
- Additional commissioner of police, BNS Reddy, has made a mark in the US. He beat other officers from across the world to win the gold at the men’s single tennis event at the World Police and Fire Games 2015 held in the US.
This week’s highlight: BBMP elections
News and updates
The BBMP voter list has been announced. The State Election Commission (SEC) is using a de-duplication software to detect errors in the electoral rolls, and will be publishing the draft of the electoral rolls on July 8th. To ensure that you are eligible to vote on July 28th, enroll yourself on the voters list before that. Read: Enroll your name before July 8th to vote in BBMP elections.
The State Government has filed an appeal in the Supreme Court against the High Court single bench judgment on BBMP elections and has asked for more time. So there is a slim chance that elections may be postponed once again. Read: BBMP polls reach Supreme Court again.
Interview with BBMP Administrator
Citizen Matters interviewed the BBMP Administrator, TM Vijay Bhaskar, to find out how the past couple of months have been for him. He stated that in the last two months, people saw BBMP becoming more responsive towards citizens’ queries and more transparent, and that property tax collection was at its highest. Read his interview here: “Initiating financial discipline in BBMP is my achievement”.
A citizen writes about the false promises that those standing for elections typically make: The tradition of promising ‘obbattu’ (sweet stuffed pancakes) and giving ‘biskattu’ (biscuits). Read: BBMP candidates must make their stand clear on citizen participation.
In other news…
BBMP uploaded all pending bills online for public scrutiny. A political party inspected the bills. The result: Derailing of the debate on social audits of public projects. Read: BBMP Admin’s transparency agenda sparks a Social Audit controversy.
Living by the lake
The van devatha at Munnekolala Lake. Pic: Sanchayan Nath
The diversity of people who live around Bengaluru’s lakes is not limited to mortal beings… Even gods and spirits have made lakes their home! See: In pictures – Where mortals, gods and spirits coexist.
Stranger in a strange land
The transition from a small US town to a bustling Indian city is one that a newcomer experiences with all senses. Our new intern, Holly Thorpe shares her first impressions of Bengaluru. Read: First week in a city that refuses to be ignored.
In yet another trip down memory lane, Chandra Shekhar Balachandran talks about a lake he grew up around and the ‘Government Rains’ of the 1960s. Read: Ganeśa’s tank.
Living in the city
Here’s the latest from the Whitefield Rising group – Maths magic, get out and play, and other stories from Whitefield.
A citizen from Malleshwaram complains to civic authorities seeking respite from dangling electricity cables from a streetlight. The relief is yet to arrive. Read:The Malleshwaram streetlight problem.
Stalls at the Malleshwaram Parisara Habba. Pic: Rekha Chari
Residents of Malleshwaram were witness to the Malleshwaram Parisara Habba on June 28th. While this year’s edition did see an increase in footfalls, what really stole the limelight were the stalls that promoted eco-friendly living. Read more.
Events this week
- Bengaluru International Centre is hosting a talk on south Indian Devadasis and the question of religion on July 3rd – When the Devi is your Husband.
- Pianist, composer and arranger, Sharik Hasan will be performing a jazz concert at Alliance Francaise on July 3rd.
- Go on a tour of the old city and soak in the culture and history of the Bangalore of yore, at the Nagarathpet Walk on July 4th.
- Bhaskar Ghose is releasing his second novel Parricide on July 4th at Bangalore International Centre. The book release will be followed by a discussion on Indian authors writing in English.
- Watch Death, an adaptation of Woody Allen’s comedy on July 4th at Alliance Francaise and witness the tale of a logical man lost in a mad world.
- Make your way to Seva Sadan on July 4th for Janani, a Tribute to the Devi, where Vasanthi Hariprakash, Geetha Navale and Mythili Anantharaman will be saluting the feminine forces that rules the world.
- Visit Max Mueller Bhavan between July 5th and 12th to view Architecture of the Senses, an exhibition featuring the works of Pondicherry based architects, Poppo Pingel and Mona Doctor-Pingel.
Click here for the complete list of events happening in Bengaluru.