Bengaluru Buzz: Preventing garbage truck accidents | Caution advised with COVID case spike … and more

After three fatal accidents caused by garbage trucks, BBMP is now taking action. Read more of this week's news in our roundup.

Action after garbage trucks cause fatal accidents

After three fatal accidents caused by BBMP garbage trucks, the city traffic police conducted a special drive and booked 307 trucks for violations such as signal jumps and defective number plates. BBMP has made fitness certificates mandatory for the trucks, and marshals have been deployed to inspect the vehicles at mustering points every day. BBMP Chief Commissioner Gaurav Gupta said the new garbage contracts would include a clause mandating the use of new vehicles.

BBMP also decided to install speed governors in 600 compactors to restrict their speed to 35 kmph. BBMP, along with the police, is also conducting training sessions, while there are proposals to check the physical fitness and eyesight of the drivers.

Source: The New Indian Express, The Hindu, Deccan Herald, Indian Express

Read More: One truck to transport both wet and dry waste: Why this is a problem

Prohibitory orders during II PUC exams

Almost 6.84 lakh students on Friday appeared for the II PUC (Class 12) examinations amid tight security. Students were asked to remove hijabs.

Bengaluru Police Commissioner Kamal Pant issued prohibitory orders from April 21 to May 18, to ensure malpractice-free examinations. Photocopy centres, cyber cafes and computer service stores within 200 metres of educational institutions have to shut down between 9 am and 1.30 pm on the days of the exams. An assembly of four or more is also banned.

Source: The Times of India, Deccan Herald

Next academic year to begin mid-May

The Department of Public Instruction, on Thursday, released the academic calendar for 2022-23 for primary and secondary schools. The academic year for classes 1 to 9 will begin on May 14th. The department has declared the year ‘Kalika Chetarike Varsha’ (learning improvement year).

Many budget schools in the private sector are struggling to enroll students due to speculations of a fourth COVID wave. Many families that migrated back to their hometowns during the lockdowns have not returned, fearing the possibility of a fourth wave. Schools say that entry-level enrolments have dropped by 20-30%, and that inquiries about admissions have also fallen.

Source: The Times of India, Deccan Herald

Deadline to fix dug-up roads

Gaurav Gupta directed BBMP officials to speed up repairs of the roads that the BWSSB (Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board) has dug up for laying pipelines. The roads should be fixed by May, Gupta said. The government had sanctioned Rs 1,078 cr to fix 794 km of roads dug up to lay water and sanitary lines in the city’s peripheries. BBMP’s records reveal they have finished restoring about 290 km of roads, while works on the remaining 505 km is pending.

BBMP has also drafted an action plan to asphalt 392 km of arterial and sub-arterial roads for Rs 600 crore. The work is scheduled to be executed this financial year.

On Tuesday, the High Court directed BBMP to issue work orders for pothole-filling works to American Road Technology and Solutions Pvt Ltd within 36 hours.

Source: Indian Express, Deccan Herald

Govt advises caution as COVID cases spike

State government has advised the use of masks in closed spaces, given reports of rising COVID cases in Delhi. Health Minister Dr K Sudhakar said that 20-30 lakh people in the State have not even taken the second vaccine dose, and there was no interest in availing the third dose. On Thursday, the State saw 100 new cases, 91 of which were from Bengaluru Urban.

Meanwhile, experts have asked people to focus on controlling non-communicable diseases such as heart ailments and diabetes, to lessen the impact of the pandemic.

Source: Indian Express, The Hindu, The Times of India

Free mobile clinic for slum residents

Parikrma Humanity Foundation and Indiassetz has launched ‘Prana – Clinic on Wheels’ initiative. The mobile clinic comprises a mobile ICU oxygen support unit with four beds, offering emergency support, doctors’ consultation on call and mobile vaccination administrator.  

Prana mobile clinic
A Prana mobile clinic. Pic credit:

The Prana Mobile Units will reach out to 110 slums, covering a population of 20,000. Each unit can be docked at any pre-arranged point that is closer to a catchment of critical patients, and then driven to another docking station where there is a need.

Source: The New Indian Express

Over 1,300 trees on ORR to be cut for Metro

The Karnataka High Court on Wednesday allowed BMRCL (Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd) to axe and translocate trees for building Metro Phase 2B between Kasturinagar and Kempapura on Outer Ring Road. As per the order, 1,334 trees can be removed and 160 trees translocated, while 26 can be retained. BMRCL had submitted that a day’s delay in the project work would lead to loss of Rs 2 cr.

Source: Deccan Herald

Metro Neo proposed in E-City

To solve last-mile connectivity issues, the Electronics City Industrial Township Authority (ELCITA) has proposed a 5-km Metro Neo network or ‘Tech Halli Express’, connecting tech companies with two upcoming Metro stations on the Yellow Line (RV Road-Bommasandra).

Metro Neo would have a trolleybus system with overhead electric traction. Ten stations are proposed in the first phase.

Source: Indian Express

Read More: How commute can be easy, safe during Metro work on ORR

BDA collects 5 cr property tax in a week

BDA (Bangalore Development Authority) officials said they collected Rs 5 crore as property tax within a week of the collection starting on April 12th. Nearly 1,000 people paid taxes every day of the week.

The rush seems to be due to a 5% discount offered to those who remit taxes by April 30th. According to last year’s data, the BDA has 1,02,000 properties across the city. However, property owners said they faced difficulties accessing the online payment link.

Meanwhile, the BBMP has fixed a loophole in its property tax portal, so that the zonal classification for every property would be auto-populated. Last year, thousands of property owners had received notices despite paying their dues, on account of ‘wrong zonal classification’.  

Meanwhile, the state government has decided to continue the 10% reduction in property guidance values until July 24th. More property registrations had happened and revenue generated since the guidance values were slashed in January.

Source: The New Indian Express, The Hindu

[Compiled by Revathi Siva Kumar]

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