Tenders invited – KRDCL invites tenders – Elevated corridor

Tenders are invited by KRDCL for the controversial elevated project without Cabinet approval.  State Government is being accused of disregarding the opinion of public.

Protests on – Tenders are invited :

There is a great amount of protest for the elevated corridor project.  A lot of citizen activists have red-flagged the Rs.2600 crore elevated corridor project.

The State Government has repeated its commitment to the plan.  The KRDCL has invited tenders for  a key section of the 22 km North-South corridor. 

This connects Hebbal flyover and Central Silk board junction thru Mekhri circle, JC Nagar, Shanthinagar and Bannerghatta road junction.

KRDCL Tenders invitation :

KRDCL has divided the project into 3 packages on 2, 3, 4 and 6 lanes.  The package will be Shanthinagar to Central Silk Board, JC Nagar to Shanthinagar, Baptist Hospital to JC Nagar.

Elevated corridor project – Tenders :

The total length of the project is 96 km.  the tenders have been invited for 22.22 km. for 3 packages.  This consists of 6.15 km. 8.75 km and 7.22 kms.  The bid is for 3 years project and the contractor must maintain infrastructure for 10 years.

The tender will be opened on May 6.  The other bids will be called in the coming months.  The project axes or trans-locates 3700 trees. 

North South stretch on 22.1 km. to cost Rs.5060 crores – Tenders

The corridor project has given environmental clearance.  Hours after getting the clearance the KRDCL invited tenders for the first phase.

The 22.12 km North – South corridor is between Baptist Hospital on Bellari road and silk board junction.  The estimated cost of the project is Rs.5060.71 crore.

The total project comprises 102 km. seven corridors.  It will be built at an estimated cost of over Rs.25000 crore.

Calling of Tenders – public ire :

In a recent cabinet meeting, the cabinet authorized the Chief Minister to take the final call on the project.  The project got approved by Kumarawamy.  The public works department will be executing the project.

The public is of the view that the government is in a sense of urgency before the model code of conduct comes into force before the Lok Sabha elections 2019.

Activists have criticized the Coalition government’s decision to go ahead with the elevated corridor project without public consultation.

Super-specialty hospitals – Bengaluru

Super-specialty hospitals are growing in Benglauru.  The Karnataka State Government is planning to set up four super specialty hospitals in the city.

Health care is gaining increasing importance in recent years. The concept of health care is emerging from providing treatment to the disease to the improvement of overall health status and also maintenance of good health.

What is a super-specialty hospital?

Super-specialty hospitals may have doctors with degrees as in DM neurology, McH urology, DM gastroenterology, McH neurosurgery as in super-specialists.  These specialists have education higher than a MD/MS.

Facilities at super-specialty hospital

They have micro specialized in a organ system as such so are more experts for diseases system wise as in gastroenterology(stomach and intestine) system, nervous system as in DM neurology, diseases of diabetes etc as in DM endocrinology.

The specialities includes such as Neuro surgery, Plastic surgery, Cardio-thoracic surgery as well as others.

Super-specialty hospitals – International standard:

A super-specialty hospital focuses on the treatment of specific illnesses.  The quality and safety regulations follow the accreditation standards of National Accreditation Board for Hospitals & Healthcare Providers (NABH).

National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers (NABH) is a constituent board of Quality Council of India (QCI), set up to establish and operate accreditation program for healthcare organizations.

The approval by International Society for Quality in Healthcare (ISQua) gives credibility to the NABH standards to be compatible with global benchmarks. Accreditation by ISQua had been granted to hospitals of 11 countries so far. The 12th country to join this group is India.

Bengaluru – hub of super-specialty hospitals:

The Government of Karnataka is in search of land to set up the super- specialty hospitals in four different party of the city according to the Bengaluru Development Minister DCM G.Parameshwara.

The upcoming hospitals will be constructed on the lines of the existing Victoria and Jayadeva Hospitals. 

Kannada Pustaka.org for visually impaired

Kannada Pustaka.org believe that access to books is key to education. The members  strongly believe that as a society, one needs to raise the standards of inclusive education and create more opportunities for the visually impaired.

At Kannada Pustaka, the members give them the tools to succeed by providing books in the formats they need. They are proud to have created the first digital library of accessible Kannada textbooks.

MOU signed with Karnataka government :

Kannada pustaka signed a MoU with the Department of Kannada and Culture, Government of Karnataka to create an open library of open source audio books. They are working towards creating audio formats of all the open source Kannada Literature.

Kannada pustaka is working with a team Kanaja.in and the department to pilot this ambitious project.

After over two years of groundbreaking activities, Kannada Pustaka got registered as a non-profit public trust on the 3rd of May 2018. This enabled them  to build projects and build resource base. 

Kannada pustaka help visually disabled :

Students with born vision disability and who suffer vision loss do not have  access to books.  They learn Braille or wait  for other recorded audio formats. With a vision to bring all students the textbooks they need in the format they prefer, kannada pustaka  turned digital. It created the first digital library of accessible Kannada textbooks. 

Text book chapters :

Kannada Pustaka create editable textbook chapters through a semi-automated distributed proofreading process. Unicode used with text to speech synthesis engines provides an approach to create audio files almost immediately.

Kannada pustaka.org :

Kannada Pustaka is a voluntary initiative creating open source accessible textbooks. These books are meant for educational use. The Unicode text content used to generate these audio textbooks was created adopting a distributed proofreading model.

Textbook chapters are available as podcast episodes on iTunes. These audio books have seen sent to all schools for special children across Karnataka. 

Digital copies of Braille textbooks are available for download in kannada pustaka.org. These files are shared under  Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivatives 4.0 license.

The purchase does not require any payment.  This project is completely voluntary and rely on dedicated contributors who devote their time to correcting textbooks converted from print or PDF.  

Come together to create a better world with better reach! 6 

Crop loan waiver – Karnataka Government

Crop loan waiver scheme is to provide loan wavier relief of up to Rs.2 lakhs for the poor and marginalized farmers. The scheme intends to provide financial support to the drought-hit farmers in the state.

Farmer

Features of crop loan waiver scheme :

The following are the features of the scheme –

  • To grant financial assistance to the debt-ridden farmers.
  • To reduce farmers debt.
  • To provide current loans to the farmers for the forthcoming sowing season.

Highlights of the crop loan waiver scheme :

The following are the highlights of the housing scheme. – The loan amount will be distributed to the eligible farmers in four phases.

  • The amount of Rs.10,500 crore is allocated in the budget 2018-19.
  • The amount of Rs.6,500 crore is allocated for the farmers to get an initial loan from the banks for agricultural activity.

As per the declaration by the Karnataka Information, Department of Information and public relation concerning crop loan waiver :

As per the commitment of the coalition government to about 40 lakh crop loanee farmers of both commercial banks and co-operative banks, the crop loan waiver scheme is implemented to reach all eligible farmers.  In this

  • 36 lakh farmers have submitted their self declarations, in which
  • 20 lakh farmers have correctly submitted their Aadhar Card, Ration Card and Land Sy. No. and remaining
  • 7 lakh farmers are requested to give their correct Aadhar Card/Ration Card/Land Sy. No. in February 2019 itself for prompt waiver release
  • Rs. 1900 crores released in 1st installment to
  • 4 lakh farmers towards crop loan waiver.

Crop loan waiver – 1st installment :

All eligible farmers who submit their Aadhar Card, Ration Card and Land Sy. No. will get loan waiver 1st installment release within February 2019 for restructured, overdue and regular commercial bank loans.

All eligible farmers in co-operative sector will get their loan waiver release in the very month when their loan repayment become due for repayment.

For details about Farmer’s loan waiver,  visit : http://clws.karnataka.gov.in/

Diversion – Rs.150 crore from BBMP limits

Diversion – Rs.150 crore from BBMP limits

Diversion of Rs.150 crore from BBMP limits goes to four JD)U) constituencies.  The State Government has diverted SWM fund to Devanahalli, Hoskote, Nelamangala, Mangadi and Ramanagara taluks.

Government diverts funds from BBMP limits :

The money diversion is from the money earmarked for solid waste management under the Mukhyamantri Nava Bengaluru’s project.  The amount allotted for this project is Rs.753 crore. 

The five taluks are outside the city municipal limits.  The above mentioned places outside the city municipal limits will get Rs.150 crore for developmental works.  This includes solid waste disposal and processing units. 

According to some this seems like a politically motivated move.

Diversion of funds – JD(S) Constituencies :

The four taluks which is getting money through diversion are constituencies represented by the JD(S) leaders – Narayanaswamy L.N. (Devanahalli), K.Sreenivasamurthy (Melamangala), A. Manjunath (Magadi) and Anitha Kumaraswamy (Ramanagara). 

Hoskote is represented by M.T.B.Nagaraju who represented Congress and is the housing minister.

JD(S) Constituencies

In these areas the Waste management processing units were proposed to be set up in the future.  Instead of using the money for waste processing units which are operational and where locals are protesting the money  has been diverted.

Impact of Diversion :

Developmental work around the areas of Doddabidarakallu, Lingadheeranahalli, Subbarayanapalya, Kannahalli and Seegehalli plants have till date received only Rs.10 crore each.

These are the waste processing units which have met with strong opposition and resistance from residents residing in and around the area.  The problems faced by the residents includes foul smell and mosquito menace.

Solid Waste Management

Rs.15 crore is allotted or made available for the development of villages in and around new landfills and the existing landfills.  The existing landfills includes Bellahalli, Mittiganahalli and Bagalur.

Reasons given by the Government/BBMP :

According to Mr. Mahendra Jain, the Additional Chief Secretary (Urban development) “the allocation to the five taluks was to “mitigate” the effects of sending the Bengaluru city’s waste there.  The waste which goes to these areas will be compensated with better infrastructure”.

Elevated corridor project – elite only

The Elevated corridor project will be  enjoyed by the elites.  The corridor is going to be longer, narrower. 

corridor project details

This project was initially proposed to have 6 inter connected corridors but now will have 7.  The lane configuration has shrunk to reduce issues in land acquisition.

Investment – Elevated corridor project :

The investment has increased to 32000 crore to build the elevated corridor.  It is aimed to create more space for cars of the elite.  The poor will be forced again to use the crumbling public transport.

Besides the originally planned six corridors, another 10.99 km of elevated corridor will be built.  This will connect Ramamurthy Nagar and ITPL.  The six lane elevated corridor project plan has been changed to four lanes in some of the sections.  This is to prevent inconvenience to the public as well as to reduce land acquisition.

Opposition to elevated corridor project :

According to environmentalists this project is unscientific. It will encourage only the private vehicles to use it.  The environment cost of the project affects thousands of trees.  The elevated corridor project lacks socio-economic survey.

According to IISc Profession T.V.Ramachandra the proposed Elevated corridor project is the product of a collusion between consultants and contractors on one hand and bureaucrats and politicians on the other.

Prof. T.V.Ramachandra

Need of the hour is to provide more public sustainable transport to ease the traffic congestion.  Only elites who have AC cars will benefit from the project. 

Views of experts and citizens :

According to one Professor, the metro lines on the same route as the proposed elevated corridor project will have more capacity.  The metro lines capacity will be  38.3 time more than the road flyovers. 

Some bangaloreans are of the opinion that the government should invest in public transport.  Making public transport more affordable and attractive is the key.  The huge investment should help people move and not two wheelers and four wheelers.

At the end of the day it is public tax money and common man who ends up as a loser.

Innovation Authority – Karnataka State Startup

Innovation Authority being set up in Karnataka.

Innovation Authority being set up in Karnataka.

The State will soon set up an innovation authority to empower the startups for the ‘ease of doing business’.   This initiative is to protect the IP of Companies.

To give a fillip to protect the intellectual property of co’s, the State government is setting up an Innovation Authority.  Bengaluru city which is the forefront of IT, is taking the next step to increase the IT/BT sector growth.

Karnataka Innovation Authority

Bengaluru is ranked 20th among the world’s innovation cities.

Innovation authority will be an independent and impartial public entity that operates for the innovation ecosystem in the state.

The Karnataka Innovation Authority (KIA) will be set up through a law to overcome the legal problems the startups face.  This setup will be headed by the Chief minister.  The startups face problems in innovating technologies and ideas

One of the reasons the government has taken this initiative is to do with legal hurdles in commercializing new ideas.  The small businesses and start-ups often struggle with IP being stolen or submission by big companies.

This problem was brought to the notice of the government by the IT/BT sector.  The Innovation authority – Karnataka will have over-riding powers to overcome the legal hurdles.

The state government will put in place a legal framework to protect the IO, a first in the country.  This will be based on block-chain technology, where the ideals are protected for commercialization.

Israel is the only country in the world to form the  Israel Innovation Authority, formerly known as the Office of the Chief Scientist of the Ministry of Economy to foster innovation in the country.