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Thursday, October 04, 2007 8:25:54 AM (IST)  

Mangalore: Pothole-ridden Roads - Can the BJP Cash in on the Opportunity?

Mangalore: Pothole-ridden Roads - Can the BJP Cash in on the Opportunity?

by Florine Roche - Mangalore
Daijiworld Media Network

October 4, 2007

Having secured a comfortablee majority in the Mangalore City Corporation for the first time, the euphoria in the BJP camp is quite understandable. The dust of this emphatic victory is yet to settle down as the victorious candidates are busy taking a bumpy ride in the roads of Mangalore to celebrate their victory. 

But the common people feel that the BJP's "road" to success was pothole-ridden streets of Mangalore. Quite naturally, they are  restless to know the priorities of the newly-elected corporators vis-à-vis the so-called roads of the city.

Though the BJP corporators attribute their success to a combination of factors, they have decided that, once assuming power, they would accord top priority to improving the condition of the roads. 

Naveenchandra K, the BJP corporator-elect from 29th ward who created history of sorts by polling in his favour 81% of the total votes polled, says, "Providing drinking water, improving the condition of roads and streamlining of overflowing drainages will be given top priority." A 38-year-old bachelor boy, St Aloysius College alumnus and a post-graduate in Commerce, Naveenchandra, attributes his success to the good work he has done in his ward and to his clean image. "In the last 23 years, the Congress party gave priority only to civil works.  We will concentrate on the overall development of Mangalore on a priority basis," he assures.

It is assumed that if the mayor's post is reserved for a backward class community, Naveenchandra, who belongs to the Devadiga community, will be a strong contender to don the role of the first citizen.   

Shankar Bhat and James D'Souza (BJP)

James D'Souza, who won from the 37th Maroli ward as a BJP candidate with a wide margin, feels that bad roads were a contributing factor to the victory of the BJP. "We will prove that the administration of the BJP will be far better than the earlier 22 years of Congress rule.  We will ensure that within 2 years Mangalore roads will be upgraded to perfection and to the satisfaction of the people," he asserts with confidence. James, who earlier represented Congress and crossed over to the BJP recently, feels "Candidates who had worked for the welfare and development of the respective area have been suitably recognized and rewarded by the people.  I am a classic example of this and I will work for their betterment." 

In 23rd Derebail East ward, four-time corporator Shankar Bhat defeated Mahabala Marla, a Congress heavyweight, one who is considered a kingmaker in all mayoral polls in the recent past and himself a prospective mayoral candidate. Bhat is the front-runner for the mayor's post.  Being a senior party leader with a clean image, he is expected to be the party's unanimous and natural choice for the post, unless the reservation factor comes into picture which could turn his dreams topsy-turvy. 

"People of this city have definitely suffered a great deal due to the pathetic condition of our roads.  Naturally, development of roads will be the main part of our agenda during our tenure. We have plans to concrete all the roads of Mangalore within the next two years. But the patch-work will start immediately once the rain stops. I have started the patchwork in my ward," he stated. 

Concreting of major roads needs funds and Shankar Bhat says that the party will make use of both the central and state funds for the purpose. "MLA Krishna Palemar has brought a special grant of 28 crore from his MLA fund and another 12 crore have been approved by the 12th Finance Commission and we will use them for the purpose."  Apart from improving the road network, providing clean drinking water, drainage and storm water drainage also tops the list of priorities of Shankar Bhat and Co.  

However, it will take another 15 days for the formalities to be completed and for the new elected representatives to assume office.   Will the newly-elected corporators, a sizeable chunk of them being freshers and women, live up to the high expectations of the people? That is a million-dollar question.  

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Comments on this article
Shivananda S Prabhu, Shirva/Jamshedpur
Thursday, October 11, 2007

In our democracy some 60% go to vote. Others either cant vote, or dont care to vote. Normally elected leaders have the backing of 20 to 30 % of total electorate strength. After election Govts of every party work almost in a paralytic manner, because administration is in the hands of IAS, IPS officers with rules which are obsolete and outdated.

A.D'Cunha Shenoy, Mangaluru
Thursday, October 11, 2007

When things are not done right or for things undone every citizenship has the right to complain. When complaints are not heard that same citizenhip wants a change. This is real democracy and democarcy prevailed in Mangaluru. The Congress was booted out and a red carpet was given to BJP with a clear mandate to do what is undone. Most politicians forget their mandate no sooner they get into the office until the next elections.

Hope BJP will not do that at least for the time being. Roads are an example. But roads are not the responsibilty of the state alone. Its a joint national responsibilty. All political parties ruling or in the opposition have to pay attention to the needs of the people. Mangauluru people have lots of aspirations and needs from sewers to roads to water to drink. India is a country with drastic contradictions from culture to languages to food and everything in between. We have poverty and we have tremendous richness. We have people and we have resources.

We have education but we have lot of uneducated people with that I mean with collge degrees. At the same time largest amount of graduates come out of Indian Universities. We have small roads but we have lots of cars and aviation is flourishing like any thing. We have washers and dryers but we lack in full water suppply and elecricity. We have mobile phones unlike anywhere in the world and even a so called beggar has it. And if we look at the gadjet he has a need for it particularly when there is no fixed address or a landline telephone. We have best doctors in the world and we have a two tier medical system plus complementary government recognised medical system of Ayurveda and Homeopathy and others but some cannot afford it because we have not well organised like many small nations.

We have enormous amounts of food supply yet many who go without any food because we sell our homegrown food to earn foreign exchange. We have a large army yet we have very less enemies. We have well working political systems with functioning democracy which is the envy of the world where even two-party, one language nations find it hard to manage a nation. And we have corruption and again if I may say so its part of our culture because we encourage it by being participants.

And we want more and more. When we will be satisfied and can everthing be perfect in any nation and I am not sure. What can BJP deliver us more besides Mangaluru roads?

Joe D'Souza, Mangalore
Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Pot Holes? Every one can look at photos. They are Mini Lakes and all MCC needs is, to plant Water Lillies and to garnish the beauty,they should add few guppies from Malaria control Department. Mangalore sewer system stinks and oozes through manhole covers.

This over flown sewer ends up in these Mini Lakes or so called Pot Holes to fertilize the plants. So Water Lillies including Lotus will grow best. Mangalore will look like God's country or Garden City. New comers will have a field day watching the Mini Lakes with budding flowers in middle of the road. Side effect will be that Buses will go slow,for passengers to enjoy the highway to hell, watching the Mini Lakes. Fatalities will diminish

John Stephen Roche, SVD , Fajir / Mexico
Sunday, October 07, 2007

Congratulation Florine for showing us the pathetic situation of the roads in Mangalore. When the roads are better, there is more possibility of growth in all the aspects. In May, I had been to Andhra and I was surprised to see the better and broad roads over there even in the villages. Can Karnataka learn from our neighbouring State in maintaining the roads better?

John Stephen Roche, SVD , Fajir / Mexico
Saturday, October 06, 2007

Congratulation Florine for showing us the pathetic situation of the roads in Mangalore. When the roads are better, there is more possibility of growth in all the aspects. In May, I had been to Andhra and I was surprised to see the better and broad roads over there even in the villages. ¿Can Karnataka learn from our neighbouring State in maintaining the roads better?

Yogish , toronto Canada
Saturday, October 06, 2007

This is a golden opportunity to prove- theCcorporators should go agressively follow up on roads and get it done . As a simple business principle, Corporators should stand and monitor the road repairs themselves on site - this will take their image to new heights!! Prove , make Mangalore a great city.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Excellent artilcle Florine, In case BJP really stick in to literal meaning of your article header which is I quote - "Cash in on the oportunity" - unquote, people will give a fitting response in the next election. Lets hope BJP will live up to its image of "Party with the Difference" and fullfil the promises it made while came to voters doorsteps to request their valuable votes.

A piece of advise to Mr. Shanker Bhat - Being the leader of opposition for all these years, you are equally responsible for what you say - "People of the city have suffered a great deal due to the pathetic conditions of our roads". Also talking about 28 crores, 12 crores and then saying I have started patch work does not GEL together. Why cant you go for good Tar or Concrete solution rather than just patch work which last few hours and just a source for the contractor to make quick money ?

Saturday, October 06, 2007

This is a victory for True secularism. Current generation is too smart to get fooled by cast politics. Let us keep faith in BJP that they would work for the better of all religion and of-course to improve Mangalore roads.

Also its better if BJP discontinues the practice of changing the Mayor every year, instead make it two mayors for 5 years. Congratulations and All the best for all 60 elected representatives and Mangaloreans for electing them

bava shabu, uchila-polya/dammam
Saturday, October 06, 2007

Great oportunity to stay long in power, if roads get new shape surrounding mangalore and good improvement in the city. Congratulations.  All work as a team.keep peace in the District. Thank you

Sari Amin, Barke/Bahrain
Friday, October 05, 2007

Congratulation NAVEEN . Lucky means who gets the opportunity. BRILLIANT Means who creates the opportunity. WINNER Means who uses the opportunity.. HAVE A WINNING ATTITUDE...

saritha amin, mangalore/Bahrain
Friday, October 05, 2007

EXCELLENT! congaratulation all the winners of B J P and I am proud of Mangaloreans Finally they got up . they decided to bring a Change in Mangalore city.

Russell Colaco, Mangalore, Saudi Arabia
Thursday, October 04, 2007

Ooh! The condition is too bad. The BJP has to begin the work right away wiht no delay, whatsoever. Congrats BJP and work for Mangalore and not for your own benefit.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Change is always good, Young blood is the way forward and the current young team of 60 MCC corporators lead by BJP should fullfil most of Mangalorean's expectations if not all. CONGRATULATIONS FOR ALL THE WINNERS AND HARD LUCK TO ALL LOOSERS..

Lancy Vaz, Mangalore
Thursday, October 04, 2007

TO ALL THE NEWLY ELECTED CORPORATORS - CONGRATULATIONS GUYS. PARTY AND BAND BAJA IS OVER NOW GET DOWN TO SERIOUS BUSINESS. - First and foremost get to know your ward, the people and their needs. This should include those who have voted for you as well as those who have not. All your ward community irrespective of who has voted or not voted for you, will have very high faith on you to improve the overall infrastructure of their ward. Let the cast, religion, party identity and rivalry be forgotten and try to work towards creating harmony .

Give everyone your 24 hour helpline telephone number and make sure you answer the calls promptly. Priority needs of every ward in our Corporation is good roads, asphalted bylanes, pavemenets, padestrian crossings, road signals, regular power supply and maintenance of street lights, continuous supply of clean drinking water, an efficient drainage system, regular clearance of stinking garbage and maintain good hygiene which is lacking in our city.

Be positive and honest and TRY YOUR BEST TO KEEP AWAY FROM CORRUPTION. Stop blaming other and the previous management in the Corporation. With this clean image and good leadership qualities you may win many more hearts and elections in future. Good Luck to all the Corporators and the neglected Citizens of Mangalore.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Its not "history of sorts", its indeed a history. Change is always good and it was long over-due for BJP to take over from Congress and they have done it in style. Whatever silly excuses such as rebels etc the Congress leaders may give, It was a mandate by people to end the Congress monopoly in MCC.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Congrtulations for winners........ new Corporators have huge responsbility of renovaion of surrounding Mangalore roads.... If BJP use this oppertunity they may get good rewards......

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