CITIZEN JOURNALISM

The French revolution talked about 'Education for all, Work for all'. The free software movement is taking this further with 'Computer education for all'.This was amply demonstrated by students and teachers at the opening ceremony of Ambedkar Community Computer Center at Sudarshan Layout (behind the IBM office at Bannerghata road). The centre, a volunteer effort from AID (Association for India's Development, Bangalore chapter) and Stree Jagruthi Samithi, was launched to provide free computer training to children in the area. Cutting the ribbon (pic: Sejal Parikh) There are many reasons why this event is path breaking, but the centre's efforts in…

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"25 years, these days in Bangalore, is very old" - a remark made in jest by Arul Mani, the Vice President of Karnataka Quiz Association (KQA) just might be true for Bangalore, a vibrant, over populous city with a largely transitory and migratory population. But for the founding members of Bangalore's oldest quizzing association it was indeed a significant milestone in sustaining a culture that is increasingly lost in the malls and discotheques of this city. Quizzers a the KQA anniversary event. Pic: Author. The event ASQKANCE 2008 scheduled over two days, in keeping with tradition, delivered just what it…

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On the morning of 25 June, residents of Malleswaram, accompanied by ACP Krishnappa, took a different kind of walk. About 30 of us joined Krishnappa and Inspector Aslam at 7.30 AM to walk around a few streets of the area, to highlight the problems of traffic created by garbage, debris, cement blocks and lack of street lights. The walk was a result of a citizens' meeting that took place on 23 June, again at the behest of ACP Krishnappa in his police station. During the meet, some of us met up with officials of BESCOM, the forest department and a…

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The students of Bangalore School of Speech and Drama (BSSD) will be performing Aladdin at Chowdiah Memorial Hall on 27 and 28 June 2008 at 7:00 PM. Aladdin screens at Chowdiah Memorial Hall on 27 and 28 June at 7:00 PM. Tickets: Rs.250, Rs. 200 and Rs.150. Contact: 9845071197 or 9886360004. What makes this production unique is that it is not the familiar Disney version, rather a retelling of the original Chinese folktale in the form of a hilarious pantomime. Thrown in for good measure is some foot-tapping music and dance. You just might be enthralled by the power-packed performances…

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Bangalore in the fifties was a relaxed, laid back town with little aspiration to cosmopolitanism. There was a rarely articulated divide, between the westernized cantonment area and the city areas with their predominantly old Mysorean culture. Double road (K H Road) was the dividing line as is still suggested by the crematorium on its eastern side. The cultural divide was quite stark, Veena and Carnatic music, long skirts and long hair, kho kho and tenniquoit in the schools on the south side and piano and western classical music, basket ball and hockey, knee length skirts and god forbid, shorts! on…

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This Monday, 2nd June, newly elected Jayanagar MLA, B N Vijaya Kumar interacted with residents in a meeting organised by the Jayanagar 5th Block Residents Welfare Association to felicitate him.In his first programme after the elections, he thanked voters for electing him with a large margin (his winning margin was 22594 votes, with a voter turnout of 48%) Vijaya Kumar told the residents that he will ensure all public department officials work towards solving citizens' issues. He also promised to arrange regular meetings where citizens can interact with officials to address the problems. He urged residents to be proactive and…

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The media which prodded every Bangalorean to make a difference to the city’s future by simply voting in the just concluded assembly elections has done a great job. Sadly, the media does not know that it has done a great job. This is because, it has failed to read beyond the voting turnout number given by the Election Commission. Headlines like ‘middle class apathy’ to a meager turnout of 44 percent are plain wrong. In fact, the turnout may be as high as 80 percent. Ramesh Ramanathan, the urban affairs expert and founder of Janaagraha, notes in a column, that…

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I love my morning walks. I enjoy the birds chirping, the greenery, the flowers and the crows cawing and flying. It is unfortunate that some times we are forced to come across some annoying and disgusting sights as well. For example, people talking loudly on their mobiles and men peeing on the road-side. I am always wary of any cyclist who goes past a little too close to me. Though I do not wear too many pieces of jewellery, I do hide the chain I wear within my dress and close it with a duppatta as well. The other day,…

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Yes, I voted, with a name that was not only spelt wrong, but strangely had an extra word as well - "Meja Pramod Kumar".Over two months ago, I had submitted the form for changing the errors in my name to the ARO, and had got his signed receipt. When I applied for the ID card last month, I realised my name was still listed incorrectly. To avoid missing a chance to vote, I got the same name printed on my ID card. (Now that this election is over, I need to start the process of applying for corrections in the…

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On 14 May, the Karnataka Information Commission (KIC) ruled that the Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) can be construed as “Public Authority” and therefore it would be within the purview of the RTI Act. This issue arose out of an RTI application regarding suo motu disclosure by BIAL sought Benson Isaac, a citizen. While refusing to entertain Isaac's RTI application, BIAL took the stand that it was not a public authority as defined under the Act and as such was not under any obligation to make disclosures under RTI. Isaac then appealed at the KIC. The KIC used Section 2(h)…

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