Week’s news in brief: Sep 05-Sep 11

This week's scan of Bangalore's Kannada dailies includes a number of reports from high suicide rates in Bangalore to mobile jammers failing to work in jails.


Movement of trucks between State and TN affected

The tussle between Karnataka and Tamilnadu is not about water this time. It is taking a new turn with Karnataka State Lorry Owners and Agents Association (KSLOAA) deciding to stall movement of construction material from TN into Karnataka. This action is in retaliation to the banning of sand being transported to Karnataka by TN. Calling the ban illegal, association president GR Shanmugappa said that sand trucks were paying an additional royalty of Rs 2000 to cross the border. He said TN trucks will be stopped from Sept 10. (Kannada Prabha, Monday, Sept 8)


Stolen, recovered, but not delivered

The CCB police arrested four interstate car thieves and seized 51 cars from them, but are finding difficulty in handing the vehicles over to the owners as the engine and chasis number have been changed. Owners of 13 cars have been identified, but 38 cars worth Rs. 2 Crores are still in police custody. Insurance companies, car manufacturers and Kerala and Maharashtra Police have also been informed of this. (Prajavani, Thursday, Sept. 11)


Schools with less than 5 students may face closure

Minister for primary and secondary education Vishweshara Hegde Kageri has said that the government is thinking about closing down those schools which have less than five students. Karnataka has 500 such schools, with Tumkur topping the list with 125. Students will be rehabilitated to nearby schools and will be provided with travel allowance to reach schools if necessary. Kageri said that in many cases teachers outnumbered students. (Vijaya Karnataka, Friday, Sept 5)


100 days and 1000 transfers!

The BJP government in Karnataka completed 100 days in office, mostly engaged in announcing several populist programmes, and giving transfer orders! The 100 days of rule witnessed over 1000 transfers, with the Police department topping the list with 778 transfers. Over 300 IAS, KAS and commercial tax officials were transferred. This has proved to be a good weapon in the hands of the opposition, and has also irked several BJP MLAs too (Vijaya Karnataka, Saturday, Sept 6)

Yakshagana academy to work from Bangalore

The government has put an end to the discussion over the location of the Yakshagana academy by announcing a new academy in Bangalore. There had been speculation and controversy in locating the academy in Mangalore, Udupi or Uttara Kannada district. Since setting it up in any of these places would evoke opposition from other quarters, the government decided to have it in Bangalore. The academy will have its office in Kannada Bhavan near Ravindra Kalakshetra on JC Road. (Vijaya Karnataka, Saturday, Sept 6)

Door to door service for issuing ID cards

Disappointed by the poor response from the public in applying for identity cards, the BBMP has decided to go to every school. As a unique attempt, BBMP employees will go to every house, take pictures of residents and issue identity cards within three days. Gujarat tried this long ago with the digital camera, but failed. A pilot experiment in Jayanagar, however, has proved successful, prompting officials to extend the exercise to other wards too. (Kannada Prabha, Sunday, Sept 7)

Endowment department plans to check encroachment

The endowment department has decided to promulgate an action plan to save its assets from encroachment. Apart from tanks, temples too have lost lands to encroachers. A part of the famous Banashankari temple is regularly used to park sand trucks illegally. The endowment department has about 30 to 40 acres of land worth over Rs. 400 crores. (Udayavani, Sunday, Sept 7)

BBMP fails to induct new employees

They resigned from their jobs to take up the offer of employment in BBMP, but have not been inducted yet. That is the status of 103 candidates who were selected for the posts of Fist Division Assistants (FDAs). It is said the politics within the department has stalled their induction, as existing employees have opposed direct appointment of FDAs. The BBMP however is reluctant to acknowledge this publicly, giving other reasons for the delay. (Vijaya Karnataka, Monday, Sept 8)

Motor vehicles verification center to safeguard secondhand vehicle buyers

All you need to do to avoid being cheated for lakhs of rupess, is spend just Rs. 20. Buyers of used vehicles generally are lax about the authenticity of records, and rarely check for the possibility of stolen vehicles. Vehicle theft is on the raise and there is systematic mafia working in it. The motor vehicle verification centre has data on stolen vehicles throughout India. The centre will immediately trace a stolen vehicle for Rs.20 if one provides the registration number, chasis and engine numbers of the vehicle intended for purchase. (Vijaya Karnataka, Monday, Sept 8)

Police to have military canteen soon

The Karnataka State Police Housing Corporation (KSPHC) will soon introduce a system similar to ‘military canteen’ to provide for the daily needs of police personnel. If introduced, employees of police, fire and prisons departments will get quality goods at subsidised rates. The corporation has even created a web portal called ‘Mystore’ in a bid to introduce e commerce. The proposal is now with the government. For details visit www.mystore.ksphc.org. (Kannada Prabha, Tuesday, Sept 9)

BDA intrusion on BBMP jurisdiction causes ire

In a surprising move the government has handed over the infrastructure development works to be taken up by BBMP to the BDA. BBMP engineers have opposed this move and written a letter to the Commissioner. It is alleged that a powerful Minister in charge of Bangalore City is behind this move which has insulted the BBMP. (Vijaya Karnataka, Thursday, Sept. 11)


Suicide rate in state second highest in country

The highest number of suicides in the world, close to 50,000 a year, are committed in South India. In India, Kerala tops the list, closely followed by Karnataka. According to a report by the National Crime Records Bureau, Bangalore leads among cities, with 35 cases of suicide per lakh people recorded. According to a NIMHANS report 57 per cent of them are due to frustration and it is highest during examination and result announcement. (Kannada Prabha, Thursday, Sept. 11)


Technical snag in installing mobile jammers in jails

The government’s plan to install mobile jammers in jails to prevent misuse of networks has failed due to technical reasons. No company has succeeded in installing jammers successfully in jails, mainly because service providers change their technology frequently. The department of prisons has now taken up a pilot project in Mysore central jail. If it succeeds it will be extended to all jails. (Prajavani, Friday, Sept 5)

Complaint boxes in jails prove effective

The installation of complaint/ suggestion boxes in various jails in Karnataka is serving its purpose. The boxes were installed two years ago, thanks to efforts of State Legal Service Authority president and high court justice V. Gopalagowda. Jail inmates are now expressing their greivances without fear. A magistrate opens these boxes every month, seggregates the various complaints and sends them to the Additional Director General of Police (Prisons) for further action. (Prajavani, Saturday, Sept 6)

Yashwanthpur flyover to be ready in six months

Flyover works in Yashwanthpur junction is delayed by six months. As per schedule, it should have opened to the public by the end of this month. The delay in changing Bangalore Water Supply and Sewage Board (BWSSB) pipelines and evacuation of certain buildings is said to be the reason behind the delay. The work on the 350 metre long flyover, which started in March 2007, has been undertaken by Simplex, a Kolkota based company. (Kannada Prabha, Tuesday, Sept 9)

Houses for slum dwellers under JNNURM

The BBMP has signed an agreement with the Karnataka State Police Housing Corporation to build houses for slum dwellers under the JNNURM Scheme. 1411 families living in huts of 13 slums within BBMP limits will be benefited by the Rs. 70 crore scheme. Tender process regarding the project has begun. (Prajavani, Wednesday, Sept. 10)

CM favours reopening HAL airport for civil aviation

Back from his US trip, Chief Minister Yeddyurappa has expressed dissatisfaction over the quality of the new Bangalore International Airport, and has said that a proposal will mooted for reopening the HAL airport for civil aviation. He said that after looking at the American airports, the amenities provided at BIA appeared to be of low quality. Action will be taken based on the report submitted by the joint legislature committee, the chief minister said. (Vijaya Karnataka, Wednesday, Sept. 10)


Shortage of sports coaches

Karnataka is facing a serious shortage of qualified coaches which is resulting in poor performance by state sports persons. The state needs nearly 225 coaches, but has only 109. Some were appointed on temporary basis, but were not compensated adequately. There is now a demand to separate the sports department from the department of youth affairs. The tug of war between these two departments is also affecting the performance of our sports persons. (Vijaya Karnataka, Monday, Sept 8)

State yet to utilise funds reserved for sports development

An amount of Rs. 35 lakhs reserved for the development of two special sports training centres has not been utilised by the state government and is still pending with Sports Authority of India (SAI). Dr M P Ganesh had proposed a project to develop a sports training centre in Mangalore and a special training centre in Shimoga. But state the sports minister and other officials have not shown interest in implement these projects. The TN Government has built a stadium in Nagapattinam under the same scheme. (Kannada Prabha, Thursday, Sept. 11)

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