Bengaluru Buzz: Heavy rains, flooding | Ward delimitation in 8 weeks … and more

City battered by heavy rains, BBMP ward delimitation to be completed in eight weeks - read more of the week's news in our roundup.

Two migrant laborers drown

Two migrant contractual labourers who were working for a BWSSB (Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board) project near Bangalore University, drowned during heavy rains on Tuesday. The incident occurred when water from a drain flooded an underground pipeline they were working in. They had gone 20 feet inside the pipe for welding work.

A probe is underway. Locals said that the roads were dug up for more than a year and no safety equipment or signboards were used.

Source: Indian Express

Read More: Bengaluru’s Labour Stands present a highly exploitative and informal hiring market

Heavy rains cause flooding, damages

The heavy rains on Tuesday led to flooding and power failure in several areas. According to the India Meteorological Department, Bengaluru received 114.6 mm rainfall until 8.30 am on Wednesday. Calls to the BBMP helpline more than tripled from an average of 150 to nearly 500. In the worst-affected areas, residents of flooded houses struggled for essentials such as food and water. They could not cook, and food-delivery apps didn’t take orders. A Lalbagh resident said they could not even use their washrooms due to sewage entry.

In more than a 1,000 houses, especially in lakefront buildings, residents waited all night for dirty water to recede. In some houses, the water level went up to seven feet. The worst hit areas include parts of RR Nagar, Horamavu, KR Puram, Mahadevapura, Indiranagar, Hosakerehalli, Yelahanka, Govindarajanagar, Mahalakshmi Layout, Dasarahalli, Seshadripuram and HBR Layout. Three wall collapses were reported from Shivajinagar, Malleswaram and Laggere.

Long power cuts left people with no charge on their phones to coordinate. The Bescom helpline received 13,734 complaints, of which 13,165 were related to power outage. Motorists struggled to drive through flooded roads.

Source: Indian Express, Deccan Herald, The Hindu

Relief efforts post rains

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai has announced Rs 25,000 compensation for houses that were damaged during the rains. He said arrangements were made to serve food to affected people, and to drain out water from flooded houses. Orders were issued to remove bottlenecks for smooth flow of water into the city’s major stormwater drains.

Meanwhile, Mahadevapura MLA Aravind Limbavali visited the rain-affected area of Rainbow Drive Layout along Sarjapura Road. He promised that the Major Roads Department of BBMP would construct a drain on PPP model to carry rainwater from the layout into a culvert.

The Bengaluru Urban district administration on Wednesday ordered five tahsildars to submit a report on the state of the lakes and stormwater drains, assessing the damage to them. Tahsildars have been told to keep vigil on the watershed areas and drains, especially when there is possibility of damage to property.

Meanwhile, experts recommended measures such as protecting the city’s lake system and valleys zones, to reduce flooding.

Source: Indian Express, Deccan Herald

Govt has 8 weeks for BBMP ward delimitation, OBC reservation

On Friday, Karnataka government told the Supreme Court that the BBMP ward delimitation exercise and determination of OBC quota would be completed in the next eight weeks, after which the municipal election can be held. With delimitation, the number of BBMP wards will increase from 198 to 243.

Court took note of the State’s submission, and instructed the State Election Commission to announce the BBMP election dates a week after delimitation or determination of reservation, whichever is later.

Source: The News Minute,

Majority of KSRTC accidents under experienced drivers

The KSRTC (Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation) said that accidents between January and April this year had happened under experienced drivers.

ksrtc bus
Most KSRTC bus accidents happened under experienced drivers. Pic credit: Facebook

Thirty nine percent of the drivers were experienced, aged 40-50 years. Another 23% drivers were in the 36-40 age group. Whereas newly-joined drivers aged 21-30 years were involved in just 1.2% of the accidents. This year, 71 accidents have been reported involving KSRTC buses, killing 28 and injuring 67.

Source: Indian Express

Read More: Living with Namma Metro construction: Dust, traffic, safety and livelihood issues

School textbook controversy

Senior Congress leader Siddaramaiah slammed the inclusion of RSS founder Keshav Baliram Hedgewar‘s speech in the revised Kannada textbooks for Class X. On Wednesday, he urged Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai to stop the printing of textbooks and arrive at a conclusion only after discussing the issue with intellectuals and educational experts. However, the Karnataka Textbook Society said that a committee headed by Rohith Chakrathirtha has been set up to revise social science and language textbooks. Primary and Secondary Education Minister, B C Nagesh, defended the inclusion of the speech.

In the new social science Part-1 textbook, Chapter 5 dealing with social and religious reform movements has been made concise. With this, the references to Narayana Guru and Periyar have been removed. The textbook revision committee has also decided to remove texts by writers such as Aravinda Malagatti, L Basavaraju, B T Lalitha Nayak and K Neela from Class 8 and 9 textbooks. Among those who are included newly are S L Bhyrappa, writer and a vocal supporter of the Hindutva ideology.

Source: Indian Express, The Hindu

Towing of vehicles may resume

The Karnataka government’s decision to suspend towing of vehicles from no-parking zones might soon be reversed. New towing guidelines are being prepared by the Bengaluru Traffic Police and will be tabled before the government for its approval.

Joint Commissioner of Police (Traffic), B R Ravikanthe Gowda, said the number of parking violations has increased after the decision to stop towing. Offenders simply pay a fine of Rs 500 to take their vehicles, if caught, without feeling any guilt, he said.

Source: Deccan Herald

Uniforms compulsory for PU students

Following the hijab row, the DPUE (Department of Pre-University Education) has made uniforms compulsory for all pre-university (PU) students from the 2022-23 academic year, as stated in the admission guidelines released on May 16th. Students must comply with the uniform prescribed by the CDC (College Development Committee). The department has also stated that in case no uniform is prescribed by the CDC, students must wear garments which will “maintain equality, peace and harmony”.

Source: The Hindu

[Compiled by Revathi Siva Kumar]

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