Monday, December 28, 2009

I want my park back

I want my park back

How do we make Bangalore a better city for kids? How do we ensure that kids have a right to open spaces? How do we make them healthy and happy? Starting today, DNA begins a series of civic bursts, Campaigns 2010, to make Bangalore a city for GenNext: our kids

PK Surendran. Bangalore



Bookmark this child's innocence. "I usually play at Palace Grounds or the park opposite it," says Devika Mohan, a Standard VIII student of Central School, who'd participated in the protest against the recent move to restrict entry to Cubbon Park. "But I'd love to play in Cubbon Park."
After a pause, comes the childlike context: "It's like the Himalayas, you know. There may be many snow-capped mountains, but they are not the Himalayas," Devika reasons.
Devika's concern is a fallout of what happened in 2000, when the noughties dawned. Under constant hammerings by enlightened citizens, the then SM Krishna administration issued a directive asking the horticulture department to keep the city's pride, the Cubbon Park, reserved for children's recreation on weekends.
The advisory was implemented for a week, and suddenly put to sleep. Justice MF Saldanha, who played the catalyst, wrote to the government demanding to know reasons for the quixotic action, and he received a reply saying, the organisations parked inside the park were losing 'business'.

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