Thursday, January 29, 2009

17,000 abide with ABIDe

17,000 abide with ABIDe
By: Chetan R
Date: 2009-01-28


Bangaloreans sign up to help develop the city

Namma Bengaluru: Joining hands to spruce up city File pic
For the first time ever, 17,000 Bangaloreans have volunteered to build a better Bangalore.

They have done it by logging on to, an online portal that invites Bangaloreans to join hands in a change that the chief minister B S Yeddyurappa-led ABIDe (Agenda for Bangaluru Infrastructure and Development) taskforce aims for the city.

With an overwhelming response from public, ABIDe will entrust responsibilities to volunteers.

The final list will be shortlisted after four major consultations in Bangalore North, East, West and South, presided by Yeddyurappa. The public can directly interact with ABIDe members on plans and policies the city requires.

"We have received an overwhelming response," said Trigam Mukherjee of

"People have responded to our online appeal by offering their services."

While thousands have visited ABIDe's online portal that envisage a plan for better Bangalore Plan Bengaluru 2020, 17,000 Bangaloreans have consented to take part in changing Bangalore. Many more are expected to offer voluntary services by enrolling themselves for various services.

Citizens to serve

The next process is a first of its kind initiative by ABIDe that aims at active citizen participation by entrusting responsibilities to volunteers.

Few Bangaloreans including technocrats, retired people, college students and professionals will be included in list of volunteers.

"They will be given responsibilities that fit their expertise. An engineer may be given charge to monitor engineering works in the ward," said Mukherjee.

With such a huge response, the initiative has been appreciated by officials who had been in city administration since many years.

"ABIDe's initiative involving public participation in administration is a success. No such initiative in the past got such a good response from public," said Bheemappa Khandre, PRO, BBMP.

>>ABIDe (Agenda for Bengaluru Infrastructure and Development) taskforce, an initiative by CM Yeddyurappa, scores over a similar initiative by BATF (Bangalore Agenda Task force) by former CM S M Krishna for its public participation.
>>While BATF was a task force of elite people that helped the CM frame policies for city, ABIDe, besides corporate bigwigs like Biocon MD Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Infosys' Mohandas Pai and FICCI president Rajiv Chandrashekar, also has experts like former chief secretary A Ravindra and traffic expert M N Srihari.
>>While Bangaloreans had no role to play through BATF that worked with local service providers like BDA, BBMP, BESCOM, BMTC and BWSSB to improve city infrastructure, wider scope is given for public participation in ABIDe.
"They are two different initiatives," said Ramesh Ramanathan, member BATF. "ABIDe plans policies, people execute and monitor it."


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