Civic

Find in-depth articles on common issues affecting daily life in our cities, and related to community responses and action around these issues. The articles provide insights into the complexities of managing and improving urban livability and citizen engagement.

Speed limits on major roads in fast-paced Mumbai   The Mumbai traffic police have declared speed limits on nine major roads of the city starting December 13th. The police said this was done to “prevent danger, obstruction and inconvenience to the public.” Some of these roads include, P.D Mello Road, Shahid Bhagat Singh Road ( 50 kmph), Haji Ali junction to Mahalaxmi Railway Station, Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road and flyovers including Amar Mahal Flyover and Veer Jijamata Bhosale Flyover.  The police said this measure was initiated to avoid accidents caused by overspeeding.   After the traffic police announced this on X (Twitter), the…

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Fire escape staircase for BBMP's head office The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has decided to construct a fire escape staircase in the Annexure 3 building of its head office. In August this year, a fire incident occurred in the Quality and Control Depart­ment in Annexure 2 building, claiming the life of a BBMP chief engineer. For the last 13 years, the building has been without a fire exit staircase. The building houses about 20-25 departments, including health, education, and road infrastructure. The BBMP invited a short-term tender to build a staircase along with signboards, fire exit doors, air circulator,…

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As Cyclone Michaung ripped through Chennai and surrounding areas, and news about localities getting inundated with heavy rainfall started coming in, and a few affected residents narrated their ordeal online. As the day wore on, there were many calls for rescue and relief from citizens stranded in waterlogged areas.   Meanwhile, a group of researchers from IIT Madras were doing their bit by giving real-time weather information on social media. They also urged people to record flood information in their localities on the chennaiwaterlogging.org portal. Their efforts seem to have paid off because as many as 1,200 users recorded the…

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Chennai grapples with severe flooding, transportation disruptions and health concerns after cyclone The aftermath of Cyclone Michaung continues to severely impact Tamil Nadu, particularly Chennai, with incessant rainfall causing extensive flooding, waterlogging and power outages. The city's schools and colleges are closed. Relief efforts are underway, with the Indian Air Force air-dropping 2,300 kg of relief materials in flood-affected areas and the Southern Railway cancelling train services. The effects of the cyclone also include disruptions to operations in many industries in Chennai. The Tamil Nadu government and various organisations are actively engaged in relief work, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi…

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Mumbai second to Delhi in crimes against women Gone are the days when Mumbai was considered the safest place for women, suggest the latest National Crime Records Bureau figures. Mumbai ranked next to Delhi, which continues to be the most unsafe/dangerous city for women, with 14158 crimes, Mumbai was second with 6176 crimes in 2022.   Figures indicate that crimes against women, as well as overall crimes registered under the Indian Penal Code have gone up since 2020.  Apart from cases of molestation, Mumbai also recorded serious offences such as sexual assault, murders and other violent crimes. The cases of sexual…

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Maximum cybercrimes in the city In the first 11 months of this year, the IT capital reported 16,000 cybercrimes. The data from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) reported 15,779 cybercrimes, or 23.4% of the total crimes (67,446). Phishing, OTP frauds, extortion and sextortion were the most common of the 46 cybercrimes in the city. Every fourth crime happens online. An official policy to register every case has also contributed to the large numbers, said sources. The report followed the ‘Crime in India 2022’ document released by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), as the city recorded 9,940 cases last year,…

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When Cyclone Michaung was wreaking havoc over different parts of Tamil Nadu on December 4th, with the heavy rain and squally winds battering Chennai and its suburbs, a small group of residents in Tambaram swung into action. Among the many stories of distress and wreckage, the efforts of these individuals to prevent floods in low-lying areas and to stop water from entering homes, while ensuring relief supplies to affected communities was heartening. Dr S M Govindarajan, Founder President of the United Federation of Residents Welfare Associations of Tambaram City Corporation narrates how flood control, rescue-and-relief work were taken up by…

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Cyclone Michaung affected most parts of Chennai with the city receiving an average of 300 mm of rains on December 4th. The incessant downpour stopped around Tuesday midnight, bringing some respite to citizens; although the relief was only temporary, with the aftermath of the rains throwing up difficult and challenging situations for both citizens and civic workers. The unprecedented rains have triggered a variety of issues including heavy waterlogging in many areas, swinging NDRF personnel into action to rescue residents stranded in submerged areas, with boats. Other issues faced in various areas include loss of vehicles submerged in water, power…

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Winter is here, lowest temperature of the season It's time to pull out the scarves and (very light!) sweaters again. Marking the onset of winter, the temperature dipped below 20 degrees Celsius for the first time this season in Mumbai. The India Meteorological Department (IMD), the Santacruz observatory recorded a minimum of 19.7 degrees Celsius this week on 29 November. While the Santacruz station noted this temperature drop, the Colaba coastal observatory marked a minimum of 21 degrees, indicating a two-degree dip from the normal range. As the city encounters this decrease in temperatures, meteorologists affirm that the winter season…

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Uber Green starts electric vehicles You can book sustainable, eco-friendly rides through the cab-aggregator app, Uber Green, Uber's global flagship electric vehicle service. The first green vehicles were flagged off by IT-BT Minister Priyank Kharge from Bengaluru Palace, during the Bengaluru Tech Summit 2023. The feature is accessible in various parts, including the central part of the city. Uber Green may upgrade services to many geolocations. You can see the option on your app. It will help to support riders to opt for the energy-friendly EVs. The ‘all-electric’ service in Bengaluru, Delhi, and Mumbai, from June 2024 onwards, will be…

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