Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Pulakeshinagar residents yearn for development

Pulakeshinagar residents yearn for development
G Manjusainath and Poornima Nataraj
The acute poverty, dirty environs and overall filth in Pulakeshinagar is a shock even to one mentally prepared to encounter the worst. Add to it, acute water scarcity, and one can easily say that this constituency finds place in the bottom rung of the development ladder, when compared with other constituencies.

A common sight here is that of men pedalling bicycles with ten to twelve pots strung to the vehicle. The hunt for the elusive water forces people to traverse several kilometres daily. Amounts ranging between Rs Three and Rs Five are paid for a pot and many people end up spending between Rs 45 and Rs 60 a day for this scarce commodity.

Camera-shy Muniraj said he spent around Rs 1,500 every month for water while his family’s total earnings totalled only Rs 8,000 per month.
“Because I live in my own house, I can afford to spend such a huge amount on water. Just think of those who don’t earn much and live in rented houses. How much can they afford to spend on water,” he rhetorically queried.
Cauvery water is supplied to the area just once in five days. The water table has dipped drastically in parts of the constituency. Many borewells have either gone dry or the water level has gone almost 600 feet below, claim some residents.

Open drains that are choked are a regular feature in the area. Rarely do BBMP sanitary workers visit the area to clear the blockages. It goes without saying that the health of the residents in not in great shape.
During their visit to Kushalnagar, these reporters noticed that dirty water had gushed into a house and the sanitary line had got choked.
Many electronic goods had got destroyed. It took nearly five hours for sanitary workers to respond to the desperate calls made by the inmates and another two hours for the blockage to be cleared. The absence of streetlights is another complaint made by the public.
Residents allege that the nonperformance of consecutive governments and frequent bickering among different parties has ensured that the people suffer


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