Bengaluru

‘None of the 500 applicants made it to ward committees’

Citizen activists question the credibility of the BBMP Commissioner’s office

Citizen activists are up in arms after not a single name from the 500 independent applications filed made it to the list of members of the 131 ward committees.

“Not even one of the 500 who applied got into the list,” said Narendra Kumar, member of the Lanchamukta Karnataka Nirmana Vedike. “It (the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike) has made a mockery of citizens by asking them to apply.”

Activists said this had seriously dented the credibility of the BBMP Commissioner’s office, as the Commissioner had promised to look at the applications sent to his office. Citizens for Bengaluru has asked the BBMP to nullify the “arbitrarily constituted” 131 ward committees and work on all the 198 ward committees afresh.

“CfB facilitated at least 187 applications of locally active citizens, with 50% women applying. Yet, we see not one selected, and the BBMP claims it did not get enough women applicants,” said Srinivasa Allavali of CfB.

‘Relatives on the list’

Activists have found several cases where close relatives of councillors are in the committee. According to Mr. Kumar, in Shanthinagar ward (no. 17), V.V. Puram (143), Doddanekkundi (85) and Muneshwaranagar (48), close relatives of councillors are on the list of committee members. “This means that they will be the proxy chairmen of the committees,” said Mr. Kumar. The Shanthinagar ward committee for has P. Shivakumar, husband of the ward councillor P. Sowmya Shivakumar, as a member. However, Mr. Shivakumar refuted these claims and said all the names on the ward committee list were that of members of registered associations.

“I am the president of a registered association, Nadaprabhu Sri Kempegowda Sarvajanika Seva Vedika,” he said, and added, “Similarly, all the other names on the list are that of members of registered sanghas and self-help groups.”

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Printable version | Feb 18, 2020 8:51:39 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/none-of-the-500-applicants-made-it-to-ward-committees/article19166991.ece

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