Yes, it has been an exciting weekend. Your own interactive news and analysis website, Citizen Matters, won the Namma Bengaluru Award in media category, at an event organised by Namma Bengaluru Foundation in Freedom Park, on Saturday, March 15th, 2014.
Accepting the award, Citizen Matters co-founder Meera K noted that even though the team was tiny by normal standards of newsmagazines, in reality, it is hundreds of thousands strong, because of direct participation from citizens.
“It is the citizens of Bangalore who share their news, community activities and events, the citizens who send leads for our professional journalists to investigate, and the citizens who contribute to our non-profit public-funded journalism foundation – the Oorvani Foundation. This award is for everyone of you”, she said.
Citizen Matters co-founder Subramaniam Vincent says: “We thanks countless citizens and associations who partner with us on a regular basis with RTI findings, documents, data, articles, insight, alerts and more.” He added that Citizen Matters aims to continue to be the watchdog for city governance while at the same time fostering communities working for change in the city through journalism.
Jagadeesh, Joint Secretary, Yelahanka United Environment Association (R) -YUVA, a Citizen Matters reader, said in his email to Arathi Manay Yajaman, Citizen Matters writer and blogger who manages ‘Like a Lake’ and ‘Puttenahalli Post’ blogs : “Congratulations to you and Citizen Matters on winning the prestigious Namma Bengaluru Award! Such an inspirational work does not happen without a great deal of effort on the part of everyone in Citizen Matters. We Bangaloreans are fortunate to have you all to take the lead for a noble cause for the city and wish you more success in the future.”
The Namma Bengaluru award jury headed by former Lokayukta Justice Santosh Hegde had former minister and actor Tara Anuradha, IAS officer P Manivannan, Radio and TV journalist Vasanti Hariprakash, urbanist Ravichandar, social entrepreneur Ashwin Mahesh, CMD of Microland Pradeep Kar, Trustee of NBF H S Balaram, founder of Nav Bharat party R K Misra and others.
Ashwin Mahesh, a director at Oorvani Media Private Limited, the firm that publishes Citizen Matters, recused himself from the panel while judging the awardees for Media and Journalist categories. Mahesh also does not have any editorial responsibilities at Citizen Matters.
Citizen Matters looks at this award as a recognition of the web-platform we have created for citizens and journalists to partner in the cause for a better and democratic city, without either side compromising its own independence. We also look at it as an award that recognises the power of independent media.
Lifetime award for lake crusader
The Namma Bengaluru Award for lifetime achievement this year was conferred on Venkata Subba Rao, the lake crusader who saved Byrasandra lake from vested interests.
Hemanth Kashyap, Chief reporter of News9, won the Namma Bengaluru Award in journalists’ category. Citizen Matters journalist Navya P K was one of the finalists in this category.
Poonam Bir Kasturi of Daily Dump fame – Social Entrepreneurs category
Bangalore One – Government Organisations category.
T R Nagamani, Principal, Chunchaghatta Government School – Government Officials category
Wipro – Corporate Social Responsibility
Association of People with Disability – Citizens Group category
Eshwar Mahadevan, V Subhash Chandra and Amruth Charmana – Founders of Good Hearted Soul that focuses on Organ Donation in the city – Citizen – Youth category
G Manohar Rao – Citizen Individual category