Our cities need better leaders

Today’s Livemint editorial talks about how Indian cities need better leadership and how its current political structure hinders good administration:

India does not have the political structures required to run its growing cities with large budgets. One of the key problems is the lack of quality political leadership at the third level of government (the problem is perhaps even more acute in the village panchayats). The two are linked: talented politicians are unlikely to be attracted to a job that has little power while handing over more power to city governments will backfire unless the quality of urban leadership improves. Much of the debates on devolution seem to bypass this key obstacle. Indian cities need the quality of political leadership that was available many decades ago, when people of the calibre of Nehru, Patel, Bose, Rajagopalachari and Prasad led city governments.

Several countries in the world have empowered mayors. New York mayors such as Rudy Giuliani or Michael Bloomberg can be effective because they have power; Boris Johnson has far more freedom to manage London than his Indian counterparts; the campaign to bring the Olympics to Rio de Janeiro has been led by mayor Eduardo Paes; even many Chinese cities have been hothouses for political talent that later went national. In India, state governments that have traditionally been run by rural elites have not been keen to hand power to city governments that are usually treated as cash cows to fund patronage networks in the hinterland. The way Karnataka politicians have treated Bangalore or Maharashtra politicians have treated Mumbai are two obvious examples.

Full Article: Indian cities need better leadership, February 14, 2014.


Bangalore Water Bill1

Demand, Supply and Marginal Cost Pricing

Karthik Shashidhar, Resident Quant at the Takshashila Institution and B.CLIP faculty, discusses a few concepts in economic reasoning.

How much would you value a pen? I’m talking about a stainless steel fountain pen here, made by the Parker Pen Company. It is a three year old pen in excellent working condition.

Let us say that Anjali values it at Rs. 100 and Babu values it at Rs. 50. Now, what if I tell them that I’m willing to sell the pen, and that the price at which I’m willing to sell is Rs. 75? Will either of them buy the pen?

It might be intuitive to see that Anjali will buy the pen at Rs. 75, while Babu will not. Notice that Anjali values the pen at Rs. 100, which means by paying Rs. 75, she is getting hold of a good that is worth Rs. 100 to her. It is a clear win for her! Why will Babu not buy the pen? Given that he values the pen at Rs. 50, he will only get Rs. 50 worth of goods by spending Rs. 75 – clearly a losing deal.

Insight 1: Price and value are not the same thing. Value is what a particular good is intrinsically worth to you. Price is the rate at which the good is traded.

What would happen if I were to set the price of the pen at Rs. 40? Now, you might see that both Anjali and Babu will want to buy the pen. If the price is Rs. 150? It is intuitive to see that neither will want to buy the pen at that price.

Now let us expand the problem. What if there are a thousand different potential customers,  rather than just Anjali and Babu? Let us assume once again that each of them values the pen independently. Now, how will the number of people who want to buy the pen depend on the price?

Insight 2: If you value a good that is for sale at an amount that is higher than the price at which you can buy it, you should buy.

If we were to price the pen at Rs. 50, how many units will it sell? This is exactly equal to the number of people who value the pen at greater than or equal to Rs. 50! If we are to price the pen at Rs. 49? Then it will sell exactly as many units as the number of people who value the pen at greater than or equal to Rs. 49!

You might see a mathematical insight here – the number of people who are willing to buy the pen at Rs. 49 is either greater than or equal to the number of people who are willing to buy it at Rs. 50. How is this so? The people who buy it at Rs. 50 are those who value the pen at an amount greater than or equal to Rs. 50. Now, if an amount is greater than or equal t Rs. 50, it is also greater than Rs. 49. So everyone who values the pen at greater than or equal to Rs. 50 (i.e. people who are willing to buy at Rs. 50) will buy it at Rs. 49. And there are more – what about those people who value the pen at Rs. 49? They may not buy when the price is Rs. 50, but they will definitely buy when the price is Rs. 49! Adding these to the number of people who have valued the pen at an amount greater than or equal to Rs. 50, we find that the number of people who want to buy the pen at Rs. 49 is greater than or equal to the number of people who want to buy at Rs. 50.

Now, we can generalize this rule.

Insight 3: For a particular good, the number of people who will want to buy at a lower price is greater than or equal to the number of people who will want to buy at a higher price.

Now, let us look at selling. Let us assume that everyone in the class has an identical pen.  Let us say that once again it is a stainless steel fountain pen made by the Parker Pen Company. Once again, each member of the class values the pen differently. Now, what if I offer to buy their pens at Rs. 50? Who is going to sell to me?

People who will sell me the pen at Rs. 50 are those that value their pens at an amount lower than Rs. 50! Let us say Chetan values it at Rs. 40. By selling the pen to me at Rs. 50, he is giving up a good which is worth only Rs. 40 to him, and getting Rs. 50 in return. Hence, he will sell it to me.

Let us say Diana values the pen at Rs. 60. She will not sell it to me at Rs. 50, because by doing so she is giving up a good worth Rs. 60 and getting only Rs. 50 in return! Hence, the people who will sell to me at Rs. 50 are those that value the pen at Rs. 50 or lower. The people who will sell to me at Rs. 100 are those that value the pen at Rs. 100 or lower.

Like in buying, we have a similar law in selling. The number of people who are willing to sell a good at a particular price is less than or equal to the number of people who are willing to sell the good at a higher price.  

The proof of this is similar to that of the buying case, hence it is left as an exercise to the reader.

Now that we know when people buy and when people sell, can we generalize a trade? If A sells something to B at a particular price, what does that tell you about the valuations that A and B put on the good? That A has sold the good means that he values the good at an amount less than or equal to the price at which it was sold to B. That B has bought the good means he values it as an amount greater than or equal to the purchase price!

So, you notice that whenever a trade takes place (unless it is under coercion or any other extraordinary circumstances), both the buyer and the seller are better off than they were before the trade! In other words, voluntary trade is always good.

Marginal cost pricing

Let us say I grow mangoes on my farm, and in season the trees collectively bear 100 fruits a day. Let us say that I am willing to sell each of these fruits at Rs. 10. I take them to the market, where other people from the village buy it from me. As long as the number of people who want to buy it from me is below 100, everybody is happy, for everyone gets the fruit they want, and I get adequate compensation for the fruits I’ve sold.

Over time, the population of the village increases and the demand for mangoes grows. Soon it goes beyond 100, and every day some people are denied their mangoes. Now, my intention is to maximize welfare, so it hurts me to see that people who want mangoes are not getting it. What do I do?

Let us say there is a neighbour who is willing to sell me mangoes, and I can sell his mangoes at Rs. 20 per piece. He has a large farm, so he can supply to me as much as I want every day, but I need to be the one going to the market and selling. What price do I sell them at?

Note that I need to have a constant price through the day. If, let’s say, I price mangoes at Rs. 10 per mango for the first 100 pieces and Rs. 20 thereafter (thus accurately reflecting my cost), there will be a rush among the people of the village to buy the first 100 mangoes. Given that they are no different (in terms of quality or any other “intrinsic value”) than the next few mangoes, this creates unnecessary commotion. As a welfare maximizer, I don’t like people fighting, and want them to come peacefully at any time they want and buy the mango at the known price. In other words, I need to price the mangoes uniformly. The question is what price I should charge for the mangoes.  Let us assume that each day I expect to sell anywhere between 150 and 180 mangoes.

Instinctively, you might think that the welfare maximizing price is the average price. For example, if I know that the demand will not exceed 180, the average cost of the mangoes I will sell will not exceed (100 * 10 + 80 * 20)/180 = Rs. 14.44. Does that mean I can sell the mangoes at Rs. 14.44 as a welfare maximizing measure?

Let us see what happens then. If the price is 14.44, I am happy selling the first 100 mangoes, for they have cost me only Rs. 10 each. The question is if I will want to sell the 101st mango. Note that the 101st mango comes from the neighbour’s farm, and I can procure it at only Rs. 20. Now, if I have to sell it at Rs. 14.44, I make a loss on selling the mango. Not just the 101st – every additional mango I have to sell thereafter I have to sell at a loss. In other words, I’m better off selling lesser mangoes than more mangoes! And if I don’t want to sell mangoes I’m making a loss on, in that case I’m not maximizing welfare!

Notice that at any price I set below Rs. 20, I have no incentive to sell any mangoes beyond the 100 I have grown in my own farm! As long as I have set a price less than Rs. 20 (even if it is Rs. 19.95) I have an incentive to pack up my shop early and not sell mangoes to everyone who wants it! Hence, a price less than Rs. 20 does not maximize welfare!

So what should I price mangoes at if I want to ensure maximum welfare? This has to be a price at which I’m as happy or happier selling more mangoes, as I am selling lesser mangoes. This can only happen when the price is greater than or equal to Rs. 20!

Essentially, irrespective of how many mangoes I managed to get (in limited quantities) at a lower price, in order to maximize welfare, I need to price the mangoes at the cost of the last mango I purchase! This means that in order to maximize welfare, I should price the good at the marginal cost of producing that good! In the case of mangoes here, my marginal cost (i.e. the cost of the last mango I buy) is Rs. 20, hence in order to maximize welfare I need to price the mangoes at Rs. 20. This is called marginal cost pricing.

Now, let us draw an analogy of an apartment complex. The complex gets a limited amount of BWSSB water a day, beyond which it needs to get water from tankers. Let us say that BWSSB charges Rs. 10 per kilo Liter, and supplies up to 1000 kL a day. Beyond that, the apartment association has to purchase water from tankers at Rs. 20 per kL. The question is how much the apartment association needs to bill its users for water.

The answer is the same as above. As long as the total demand exceeds 1000 kL a day (the price at which the association can purchase water at Rs. 10), water needs to be uniformly priced at Rs. 20 per kL, which is the marginal cost of purchase!

Now let us look at Bangalore city. Let us assume that BWSSB can sustainably draw up to 10000 kL of water a day from the lakes around Bangalore, and this costs them Rs. 5 per kL. Beyond that, they will need to draw water from the Cauvery, over a 100km away, at Rs. 10 per kL. What should BWSSB price the water at?

Again, it doesn’t matter that BWSSB is a public sector agency, providing a “public service”. We have seen that in order to maximize welfare, we need to price the good at the marginal cost. And the marginal cost of procuring water for the BWSSB is Rs. 10 per kL, hence, every unit must be priced at Rs. 10 per kL.

It doesn’t matter whether we are selling mangoes or water or electricity or brinjals. If our objective is welfare maximization, we will need to price the good at the marginal cost. This is a fundamental principle of economics.

Photo credit: S Vishwanath, Rainwater Harvesting Club.

Tender S.U.R.E

Tender SURE – Improving the design of Bangalore’s roads

Bangalore City Connect Foundation and the Jana Urban Space Foundation together launched the Tender S.U.R.E project to improve the design of urban roads. Piloting their efforts on Vittal Mallya Road and Walton Road in 2009, the project has been progressing since then. Below is a preview video of the project.

A useful guide for any aspiring corporators looking to improve the road infrastructure in their wards, volume I of the report can be read on Scribd below. You can also check out a presentation by BCCF. More information and videos are available on the Jana USP website.

Top image taken from the front cover of the Tender SURE report.


School for politicians

B.CLIP was featured this week in Open magazine, which includes snippets the lectures of Takshashila Councillor Prof Mukul Asher on public finance and municipal budgeting.

When he throws the floor open to questions, there are several. Predictably, in keeping with the zeitgeist, there is a question about the Aam Aadmi Party. A student asks if AAP can afford to give away free water and subsidised power to the residents of Delhi. Asher’s response is a question. “In the 21st century, what is going to be the commodity that will be the scarcest?” he asks. There is a murmur of responses, then someone gives the right answer: water. “If something is very scarce, would you price it at zero?”

Asher then explains that although a free-water policy may appear to benefit households at the outset, it would eventually hurt them. As water becomes scarcer, the cost of supplying it will increase. Therefore the only way the Delhi government can afford to give its citizens water free is by finding an alternative source of revenue—it can either take money away from other infrastructure projects, or raise water prices for commercial establishments.

The first idea is obviously a nonstarter. And if the government opts for the second, it would increase the cost of doing business in Delhi, forcing commercial establishments to move to other cities. Such an exodus would come back to hurt households, because they are customers and employees of these businesses.

Read the entire article: School for Politicians, Priyanka Pulla, Open.

Passion to practice

Meena S

On February 1,  Meena Seshadri, a software professional, a social worker and the wife of a well known politician,  spoke to the B.CLIP class on various topics related to a public life. Her session was on the realities of practicing politics and working at the grassroots level.

She talked about the choices that shaped her life, described her experiences as a software professional and as the wife of a politician and how she balanced both roles and the difficulties she faced.  She also spoke about  the role and responsibilities of a public servant touching on the multiple aspects of running for elections—from campaigning,  fund raising, to convincing the citizens to participate in solving the problems faced by the city. She described the daily challenges that one would face working at the grassroots level and the need for a strong professional and personal support system, along with the need to have a steady flow of personal income. Meena also spoke about the importance of giving back to the society and the personal satisfaction she felt with her work in bringing about a change in the country.

Meena’s session was informal and  interactive, with the B.CLIP students asking her multiple questions ranging from the significance of gender in politics, fund raising and methods to reach out to citizens .


Introduction to BBMP’s finances

On the 17th of January, Ashwin Mahesh analysed the BBMP budget for the B.CLIP students. Despite the common belief that the city’s revenues are more than sufficient to cater to it, he insisted that Bangalore is an underfunded city. Today, Bangalore houses over 10 million people, and this number is increasing by the day with migration and more job opportunities becoming available, making it the second fastest growing city in the country today.

Bangalore over the last few years has reached an infrastructure cliff – be it social, political or demographic. The population density plummets immediately beyond the limits of BBMP jurisdiction, and so does the quality of infrastructure. This is primarily due to the fact that the attention of the government outside BBMP limits has been greatly limited. But if one looks at what goes into the planning of a city like Bangalore, one can see that not everything falls under the official control of the BBMP. But then if you are a municipal corporator the only direct budget that you will have influence over is that of the BBMP.  So how do you influence what is allocated or what’s budgeted?

Calculating cost
Consider the issue of housing for the poor. How many houses will the government of Karnataka have to build? To do this, we need to identify what percentage of the population can be classified as “very very poor”.

  • Define demand: The median income across the country is about Rs. 5400 a month, and in city areas, it is about Rs. 7000 a month. In Bangalore, about 50% of the population makes less than a Lakh per annum. If the threshold of poverty is, say, Rs. 4000 a month, then we can safely estimate that around 10-15% of the people that migrate into the city need some kind of support.
  • Calculate quantity demanded:  Out of about 850-1000 people migrating into the city, 100 people need to be given a house, resulting in the need for about 20-25 houses per day (average of 4 in one house), or 7000 to 8000 houses per year.
  • Calculate cost: The minimum cost of construction is about Rs. 1500 per sqft, and the minimum habitable house is about 300 sqft. So constructing one house alone would come up to 1500 X 300 = Rs. 4,50,000. For 8000 houses, it will amount to around Rs. 350 crores, excluding the cost for land.

What we understand by calculating the cost of providing houses for the poor is that it is much larger than expected. This one small need already eats into a third of the budget. This same cost exercise can be adopted in the other areas that the BBMP works with – education, lake revival etc.

Getting the money
The main sources of funding for these projects are:

  • Levied taxes – predominantly property tax
  • Inter-governmental transfers
    • Aid – State and Federal
    • Devolution – State and Central
    • Other factors
      • Fees
      • Licenses
      • Permits
      • Betterment charges
      • Special assessments
      • Utilities

Discrepancies  – Budget vs. Expenditure
The expenditure on the proposed projects is only 35-40% of the planned amount. Reasons behind this are

  • Under-collection of revenues due. Until 2006, property tax was not self-assessed. Once it became so, around 65,000 people realised that they could either undervalue their property and pay a lesser amount, or pay someone locally to ignore the collection of the tax on their property. Today, nearly 7 lakh properties have not been registered.
  • Inclusion of illegal entries
  • Wild assumptions about the state largesse
  • Bad estimation of the actual cost
  • Contingencies

Although this is well-known, discrepancies still occur for various political reasons.

Constraints in getting funding

  • Mismatch between growth and revenue
  • Poor constitutional framework for taxation
  • Hierarchy of politics
  • No borrowing
  • Long-term financial schemes are limited
  • Greater preference for expenditure-led schemes
  • Reluctance to increase taxes
  • Increasing proclivity to reversing decisions

 How can these be overcome?

  • Collect everything that is due
  • Push the state to make a guaranteed devolution of Rs. 6000 per capita
  • Similar guarantee from the centre to make a devolution of Rs. 2000 per capita
  • Educate the public about true costs
  • Decide the role of the private sector
  • Create sync between growth and revenue
  • Move to reconstitution schemes
ward planning

Ward planning & budgeting

On January 18, A Sivasankaran took a session for students on ward-level participatory planning and budgeting. Mr Sivasankaran retired from government service a few years ago to settle in Bangalore, and has since been very active in local governance and planning processes in his ward (#60, Sagayapuram) and at several other parts of the city. Having worked in collaboration with Janaagraha, CIVIC and other Bangalore-based outfits, he founded the Jago Federation to scale and sustain his work. Mr Sivasankaran also works on electricity governance and advises the state governments of Karnataka and Kerala.

As someone who has already been able to do much of what B.CLIP participants hope to in the coming months in their wards, Mr Sivasankaran’s talk was inspirational and he urged the participants to work harder, be patient and work smart to achieve their goals. A few points of his suggestions for the participants follow.

In preparing ward-level activities and engaging local public officials, the role of evidence and knowledge is key. If one prepares a comprehensive ward budget outside of the government system but with sufficient legitimacy and realism, it can become the official budget as there are no documents that currently compete. Having a firm grasp on local realities, costs and solutions can eventually win the respect and cooperation of local officials.

Participation of residents and constituents requires leaders to go to them, rather than the other way around. Large meetings and mohalla sabhas are difficult to manage, but can be necessary to confer legitimacy to plans and provide public support that pushes them through. However, as people can be fickle as well, public approval of plans and priorities may often have to be taken in writing.

Maps and markings help as they reduce the scope for discretion and confusion, and making budgets for 5 year periods help as it often takes that long to cover all concerns. In the absence of longer term plans, anything that gets chosen could get the appearance of arbitrariness. Mr Sivasankaran demonstrated how stakeholders and their interests can be aligned with the right incentives that leadership can provide.

Mr Sivasankaran also highlighted how creating a local newspaper can both teach a lot of things as well as provide a platform that fosters change. Running on advertisements from local shops, professionals and merchants, a local newspaper can showcase news and developments from within the ward. When most people like to see their photographs and their names in newspapers, even initial hostility can be overcome when people see others’ names in a paper.

Further, given the paucity of record-keeping within government, public officials end up using newspaper reports as a track record of their success. To the entrepreneurial civic leader, a newsletter/newspaper service is a vital tool.

Finally, he stressed on how individuals will always find it difficult to effect change, and people need to build organisations and groups of people around them who can make things possible.


Garbage and the city

On January 18, Kalpana Kar took a Practice Track session for B.CLIP students on waste and its management. Ms Kar is a prominent resident of Bangalore who has been a part of the Bangalore Agenda Task Force earlier and now leads the cause of a ‘Kasa Mukta’ (waste free) Bangalore, a campaign with the city corporation that strives for a clean city.

Ms Kar gave students perspectives on four broad areas: understanding waste and its categories; waste management examples from across the world; the context in India and Bangalore; and key players in the game. Some excerpts follow.

Different cities have found their own solutions for managing waste, from conversion to energy in Sweden to recycling in Singapore and London to use as road material elsewhere, all solutions suited to local constraints such as land availability, presence of a shoreline and other factors. What they do have in common is the notion that unsegregated waste neither has any value nor is it amenable for easy and safe disposal.

There is a strong role of markets to play in the waste management sector, where the role of government is be an enabling force. Segregation of waste into various categories and sub-categories not only makes disposal easier, but also creates value. Even in a city like Bangalore where currently most people do not segregate waste, it is quite rare to find milk covers, PET bottles or cardboard boxes lying mixed with garbage heaps. This is because there is already a value chain and a market for these items and people readily resell them for a profit and they get reused in various ways. The challenge is to form similar value chains for several other waste products, that incentivises their segregation. Tetrapack is a good example of a company that has done just this – where the multi-material laminate can be reused as construction material and private agencies have developed around the same. Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) is another idea along these lines that awaits exploration.

Unfortunately, city contracts on waste management are more often transport contracts rather than garbage contracts. Contractors are not evaluated or paid based on how clean they keep their zone of operation, but paid on the number of truckloads of garbage they can bring to the landfill sites. Subsequently, there are perverse incentives for contractors to not segregate garbage, as segregation leads to lower weights and volumes. Restructuring garbage contracts, amending archaic laws and building capacity within the BBMP are essential components of going towards a Kasa Mukta city.

Ms Kar also remarked on the public ignorance on a range of garbage-related issues. Even amongst a group of educated and motivated residents, it is difficult to get accurate estimates of say how much waste their own households generate.

This compounds into a range of ‘guestimates’ on even how much waste the city as a whole generates, and of what types.

For more on Kasa Mukta visit wakeupcleanup.in and take a look at their slides.

#6 ನೆರೆ ಹೊರೆ ಸುಧಾರಣೆ ಯೋಜನೆ – ಸಂಜಯ್ ಶ್ರೀಧರ್

೩೧ ಜನವರಿಯಂದು ಎಂಬಾರ್ಕ್ ಸಂಸ್ಥೆಯ ಸಂಜಯ್ ಶ್ರೀಧರ್ ಅವರು ಆಯಾ ವಾರ್ಡ್ ಅಲ್ಲಿ ಅಲ್ಲಿನ ಅಲ್ಲಿನ ಮೂಲಭೂತ ಸೌಕರ್ಯಗಳ ಸುಧಾರಣೆಯನ್ನು ನಾಗರೀಕರ ಪಾಲ್ಗೊಳ್ಳುವಿಕೆಯಲ್ಲಿ ಹೇಗೆ ಮಾಡಬಹುದು ಅನ್ನುವುದರ ಬಗ್ಗೆ ಬಿಕ್ಲಿಪ್ ವಿದ್ಯಾರ್ಥಿಗಳಿಗೆ ಮಾಹಿತಿ ನೀಡಿದರು. ಅವರ ಮಾತಿನ ಮುಖ್ಯಾಂಶಗಳು:

1. ಯಾವುದೇ ನಗರಕ್ಕೆ ಸಂಬಂಧಿಸಿದ ಯೋಜನೆಗಳ ವಿನ್ಯಾಸ ಯಾವತ್ತು ಜನರ
ಅನುಕೂಲ ತಲೆಯಲ್ಲಿರಿಸಿಕೊಂಡು ರೂಪಿಸಬೇಕೇ ಹೊರತು ಅಧಿಕಾರಿಗಳ ಇಲ್ಲವೇ ಹಣದ ಲೆಕ್ಕಾಚಾರದಲ್ಲಲ್ಲ.

2. ವಿದೇಶದಲ್ಲಿನ ಹಲವು ಒಳ್ಳೆಯ ಯೋಜನೆಗಳನ್ನು ಇಲ್ಲಿ ತಂದು ಜಾರಿ ಮಾಡುವಾಗ ಅವು ನಮ್ಮ ಸಂದರ್ಭಕ್ಕೆ, ನಮ್ಮ ಅಗತ್ಯಕ್ಕೆ ತಕ್ಕಂತೆ ಇವೆಯೇ ಅನ್ನುವ ಮುನ್ನೆಚ್ಚರಿಕೆ ವಹಿಸಬೇಕು ಇಲ್ಲದಿದ್ದಲ್ಲಿ ಅವು ಪರಿಹಾರ ಕೊಡುವುದಕ್ಕಿಂತ ಸಮಸ್ಯೆಯನ್ನೇ ಉಲ್ಬಣಗೊಳ್ಳುವಂತೆ ಮಾಡಬಹುದು.

3. ಒಂದು ವಾರ್ಡಿನಲ್ಲಿ ನಡೆಯುವ ಎಲ್ಲ ಯೋಜನೆಗಳನ್ನು ಪ್ರತ್ಯೇಕವಾಗಿ ನೋಡದೇ
ಅವುಗಳನ್ನು ಬೆಸೆಯುವ ಬಗೆಯನ್ನು ಆಲೋಚಿಸಬೇಕು. ಉದಾಹರಣೆಗೆ ವಾರ್ಡಿನ ಎರಡು ಮೂಲೆಯಲ್ಲಿ ಪಾರ್ಕ್ ಕಟ್ಟುವ ಕೆಲಸವಾದರೆ, ಅವುಗಳನ್ನು ಪ್ರತ್ಯೇಕವಾಗಿ ನೋಡದೇ ಒಂದು ಪಾರ್ಕಿನಿಂದ ಇನ್ನೊಂದು ಪಾರ್ಕಿಗೆ ಜನರು ನಡೆದುಕೊಂಡು ಹೋಗಲು ಅನುಕೂಲವಾಗಬೇಕು ಅನ್ನುವ ಆಲೋಚನೆ ಇಟ್ಟುಕೊಂಡು ವಿನ್ಯಾಸ ಮಾಡಬೇಕು. ಒಮ್ಮೆ ಯೋಜನೆಗಳನ್ನು ಬೆಸೆಯುವ ಮನಸ್ಥಿತಿಯಿಂದ ಯೋಜನೆಗಳನ್ನು ರೂಪಿಸಲು ಆರಂಭಿಸಿದರೆ ಆಗ ಅವುಗಳನ್ನು ಜಾರಿಗೆ ತರಲು ಬೇಕಿರುವ ಹಣಕಾಸು ಹೊಂದಿಸುವುದು ಮತ್ತು ಅವುಗಳ ಅನುಷ್ಟಾನದಲ್ಲೂ ಈ ಚಿಂತನೆ ಕಾಣಿಸಲು ಆರಂಭಿಸುತ್ತದೆ ಮತ್ತು ಇದರಿಂದ ಜನರಿಗೆ ಹೆಚ್ಚು ಅನುಕೂಲವಾಗುತ್ತದೆ.

4. ಪ್ರತಿ ವಾರ್ಡಿನಲ್ಲಿ 20% ಜಾಗ ಮುಕ್ತ ಸ್ಥಳವಾಗಿರಬೇಕು ಅನ್ನುವ ನಿಯಮವಿದ್ದರೂ ಆ 20% ಜಾಗ ಇಡೀ ವಾರ್ಡಿನ ತುಂಬ ಹಂಚಿದಂತೆ ಹರಡಿಕೊಂಡಿರುತ್ತೆ ಮತ್ತು ಅವುಗಳನ್ನು ಬೆಸೆಯುವ ಸಂಪರ್ಕ ಮಾರ್ಗಗಳೇ ಇರಲ್ಲ. ಪಾದಚಾರಿಗಳು ಸುರಕ್ಷಿತವಾಗಿ ಈ 20% ಜಾಗವನ್ನು ಬಳಸಲಾಗುವಂತೆ ನಾವು
ಅವುಗಳನ್ನು ಬೆಸೆಯುವಂತೆ ನಮ್ಮ ಯೋಜನೆಗಳನ್ನು ರೂಪಿಸಿಕೊಳ್ಳಬೇಕು.

5. ಕೆರೆಗಳು ಒಂದು ವಾರ್ಡಿನ ಜೀವಸೆಲೆಯಿದ್ದಂತೆ. ಬೆಂಗಳೂರಿನ ಕೆರೆಗಳು ಐತಿಹಾಸಿಕವಾಗಿ ಒಂದಕ್ಕೊಂದು ಬೆಸೆದುಕೊಂಡಂತೆ ವಿನ್ಯಾಸಗೊಂಡತವು. ಒಂದು ಚಿಕ್ಕ ಕೆರೆ ತುಂಬಿದರೆ ಅದು ಹರಿದು ಇನ್ನೊಂದು ದೊಡ್ಡ ಕೆರೆಗೆ ಸೇರುವ ರೀತಿಯಲ್ಲಿ ಅವುಗಳನ್ನು ರೂಪಿಸಲಾಗಿತ್ತು. ಆದರೆ ಇಂದು ತಲೆಬುಡವಿಲ್ಲದ ಅಭಿವ್ರದ್ಧಿಯಲ್ಲಿ ಕೆರೆಗಳ ನಡುವಿನ ನೈಸರ್ಗಿಕವಾದ ಈ ಕೊಂಡಿ ಕಳಚಿಹೋಗಿದೆ. ತಕ್ಷಶಿಲಾ ಸಂಸ್ಥೆಯ ಸ್ವತ್ತು ಕೆರೆಗಳು ಹಲವು ವಾರ್ಡ್ ವ್ಯಾಪ್ತಿಯಲ್ಲಿ ಹರಡಿಕೊಂಡಿರುವುದರಿಂದ ಇಂತಹ ವಿಷಯದಲ್ಲಿ ಹಲವು ವಾರ್ಡಿನ ಪ್ರತಿನಿಧಿಗಳು ಒಟ್ಟಾಗಿ ಕೆಲಸ ಮಾಡಬೇಕು.

6. ಕಳೆದ ಒಂದೇ ವರ್ಷದಲ್ಲಿ ಬೆಂಗಳೂರಿನಲ್ಲಿ 330 ಪಾದಚಾರಿಗಳು ರಸ್ತೆ ದಾಟುವಾಗ
ಸಾವನ್ನಪ್ಪಿದ್ದಾರೆ. ಇದು ನಮ್ಮಲ್ಲಿ ಪಾದಚಾರಿ ಮಾರ್ಗಗಳ ಕೊರತೆಯನ್ನು ಎತ್ತಿ ತೋರುತ್ತಿವೆ. ಇದು ನಗರ ತಲೆ ತಗ್ಗಿಸಬೇಕಾದ ವಿಚಾರವಾಗಿದೆ.

7. ಸಂವಿಧಾನದ 74ನೆ ವಿಧಿಯನ್ವಯ ಒಂದು ವಾರ್ಡಿನಲ್ಲಿ ನಾಗರೀಕ ಸೇವೆ ಕಲ್ಪಿಸುವ ಅಲ್ಲಿನ ಎಲ್ಲ ಸರ್ಕಾರಿ ಸಂಸ್ಥೆಗಳನ್ನು ಒಂದೇ ವೇದಿಕೆಯಡಿ ತಂದು ಅವರ ನಡುವೆ ಸಮನ್ವಯ ಏರ್ಪಡುವಂತೆ ಮಾಡುವ ಸಂವಿಧಾನಿಕ ಹಕ್ಕು ಜನರಿಗಿದೆ.

8. ನಮ್ಮಲ್ಲಿನ ವಸತಿ ಸೌಲಭ್ಯ ಬಡವರು ಮತ್ತು ಸಿರಿವಂತರನ್ನು ದೂರ ದೂರವಿರಿಸುವ
ರೀತಿಯಲ್ಲಿದೆ. ಸಿರಿವಂತರು ವಾಸಿಸುವ ಸ್ಥಳಕ್ಕೆ ಹತ್ತಿರದಲ್ಲೇ ಬಡವರು ವಾಸಿಸುವ ಹಾಗಿರಬೇಕು. ಅದು ಇಬ್ಬರಿಗೂ ಅನುಕೂಲ ಕಲ್ಪಿಸುವಂತದ್ದು ಮತ್ತು ಅದು ಸಮಾನತೆ ಮತ್ತು ಸಾಮಾಜಿಕ ನ್ಯಾಯದ ಕಲ್ಪನೆಗೆ ಹತ್ತಿರವಾದದ್ದು.

9. ಬೆಂಗಳೂರಿನ 52% ಜನರು ಬಿ.ಎಮ್.ಟಿ.ಸಿ ಬಳಸುತ್ತಾರೆ. 12% ಜನರು ತಮ್ಮ ಕಾರು ಬಳಸುತ್ತಾರೆ. ಆದರೆ ನಮ್ಮ ಅಭಿವ್ರದ್ಧಿಯ ಗಮನವೆಲ್ಲವೂ ಈ ಕಾರುಗಳಿಗೆ ಹೇಗೆ ಹೆಚ್ಚು ರಸ್ತೆ ಒದಗಿಸುವುದು, ಕಾರುಗಳ ಓಡಾಟಕ್ಕೆ ಟ್ರಾಫಿಕ್ ಕಡಿಮೆ ಮಾಡುವುದು ಹೇಗೆ ಅಂಬುದಕ್ಕೆ ಸೀಮಿತವಾಗಿದೆ. ಇದು ಬದಲಾಗಬೇಕು. ನಮ್ಮ ಗಮನ ಯಾವತ್ತಿಗೂ ಅತಿ ಹೆಚ್ಚು ಜನರಿಗೆ ಅನುಕೂಲ ಕಲ್ಪಿಸುವುದು ಹೇಗೆ ಅನ್ನುವುದರತ್ತ ಇರಬೇಕು.

10. ಯಾವುದೇ ಯೋಜನೆ ರೂಪಿಸುವಾಗ ವಾರ್ಡ್ ಮಟ್ಟದಲ್ಲಿ ಅಲ್ಲಿನ ವಸತಿ ಸಂಘಗಳು, ವ್ಯಾಪಾರಿಗಳು ಸೇರಿದಂತೆ ಎಲ್ಲರ ಅನಿಸಿಕೆ ತಿಳಿದು ಅವುಗಳ ಆಧಾರದ ಮೇಲೆ ಯೋಜನೆ ರೂಪಿಸಿದರೆ ಅದು ಹೆಚ್ಚು ಜನಪರವಾಗಿರುತ್ತೆ.

#5 ಬ್ರಾಂಡ್ ಅಂದರೇನು? – ಹರೀಶ್ ಬಿಜೂರು

ಬ್ರಾಂಡ್ ಅಂದರೇನು? ಅದು ಯುವ ಪೀಳಿಗೆಯ ಜನ ನಾಯಕನಾಗುವವನಿಗೆ ಎಷ್ಟು ಮುಖ್ಯ? ಅದನ್ನು ಹೇಗೆ ಕಟ್ಟಿಕೊಳ್ಳಬೇಕು ಅನ್ನುವ ಬಗ್ಗೆ ಬ್ರಾಂಡ್ ಪರಿಣಿತ ಹರೀಶ್ ಬಿಜೂರು ಫೆಬ್ರವರಿ ಒಂದರಂದು ಬಿಕ್ಲಿಪ್ ವಿದ್ಯಾರ್ಥಿಗಳಿಗೆ ತಿಳಿಸಿಕೊಟ್ಟರು. ಅವರ ಮಾತಿನ ಸಾರಾಂಶ ಇಂತಿದೆ:

1. ಬ್ರಾಂಡ್ ಅನ್ನುವುದು ಒಂದು ಆಶ್ವಾಸನೆ. ಬೆಂಗಳೂರಿನ ಪಾಲಿಗೆ ಅದು ನೀವೇ !

2. ಬ್ರಾಂಡ್ ಅಂದರೆ ಬರೀ ಹೆಸರು, ಚಿಹ್ನೆ ಅಲ್ಲ. ಬ್ರಾಂಡ್ ಅನ್ನುವುದು ಒಂದು ಗುರುತು, ಒಂದು ಗುಣ, ಒಬ್ಬ ವ್ಯಕ್ತಿಯ ಮನದಲ್ಲಿರುವ ಒಂದು ಶಕ್ತಿಶಾಲಿ ಚಿಂತನೆ.

3. ಭಾರತದ 54% ಜನರು 25ರ ಹರೆಯದ ಕೆಳಗಿನವರು. 72% ಜನರು 35ರ ಹರೆಯದ ಕೆಳಗಿನವರು. ಈ ಜನರಿಗೆ ತಾಳ್ಮೆಯಿಲ್ಲ. ಎಲ್ಲವೂ ತುರ್ತಾಗಿ ಆಗಬೇಕು. ತಾಳೆಯಿಲ್ಲದ ಈ ಪೀಳಿಗೆಗೆ ನೀವು ನಾಯಕರಾಗುವಾಗ ನಿಮ್ಮಲ್ಲೂ ತಾಳ್ಮೆಯಿರಬಾರದು. ಈ ಜನರ ಬೇಡಿಕೆಗೆ ಸ್ಪಂದಿಸುವಂತೆ ನೀವು ತುದಿಗಾಲ ಮೇಲೆ ನಿಂತ ನಾಯಕರಾಗಿರಬೇಕು. ಅದಕ್ಕೆ ತಕ್ಕಂತೆ ನಿಮ್ಮ ಬ್ರಾಂಡ್ ರೂಪಿಸಿಕೊಳ್ಳಬೇಕು. ಆದರೆ ಗಡಿಬಿಡಿಯ ಈ ಬದುಕಿನಲ್ಲಿ ಒಮ್ಮೆ ನಿಂತು ನಿಮ್ಮನ್ನು ನೀವೆ ಆತ್ಮಾವಲೋಕನಕ್ಕೆ ಒಳಪಡಿಸುವ ಯೋಚನೆಯೂ ನಿಮ್ಮಲಿರಲಿ. ನೀವು ರಾಜಕಾರಣಕ್ಕೆ ಬರುತ್ತಿರುವ ಮೂಲ ಉದ್ದೇಶವೇ ಜನರ ಸೇವೆ ಅನ್ನುವುದನ್ನು ಎಂದಿಗೂ ಮರೆಯದಿರಿ.

4. ಇಂದು ಜನರು ನಿಮ್ಮ ಬಗ್ಗೆ ಏನಂದುಕೊಳ್ಳುತ್ತಾರೆ ಅನ್ನುವ ಕಲ್ಪನೆ ನೀವು ನಿಜಕ್ಕೂ ಒಬ್ಬ ವ್ಯಕ್ತಿಯಾಗಿ ಹೇಗಿದ್ದೀರಿ ಅನ್ನುವ ಸತ್ಯಕ್ಕಿಂತ ಮುಖ್ಯವಾಗಿದೆ. ಅದು ನಿಜಕ್ಕೂ ದುಃಖದ ವಿಷಯವೇ ಆದರೂ ಈ ಬದಲಾವಣೆಗೆ ಸ್ಪಂದಿಸಬೇಕಾದದ್ದು ಇಂದಿನ ರಾಜಕಾರಣದ ಅಗತ್ಯವೂ ಹೌದು. ನೀವೊಬ್ಬ ಕೆಲಸ ಮಾಡಿ, ಫಲವನ್ನು ದೇವರ ಲೆಕ್ಕಕ್ಕೆ ಬಿಡುವ ಮನುಷ್ಯನಾದರೆ ಸಾಲಲ್ಲ. ಇಂದು ಕೆಲಸ ಮಾಡಿ, ಆ ಕೆಲಸ ನೀವೇ ಮಾಡಿದ್ದು ಎಂದು ತಿಳಿಸುವ ಮಟ್ಟಿಗಿನ ಜಾಣತನವೂ ನಿಮ್ಮಲಿರಲಿ.

5. ನೀವೊಬ್ಬ ಕೆಲಸಗಾರ, ನೀವೊಬ್ಬ ಮಾತಿಗೆ ತಪ್ಪದ ನಾಯಕ, ನೀವೊಬ್ಬ ಬಡವರ ದುಃಖಕ್ಕೆ ಸ್ಪಂದಿಸುವವ, ನೀವು ನಿಮ್ಮದೇ ಲೋಕದಲ್ಲಿ ವಿಹರಿಸುವ ಜನ, ನೀವು ಜನರ ಜೊತೆ ಬೆರೆಯದವರು, ಹೀಗೆ ನೂರಾರು ಬಗೆಯಲ್ಲಿ ನಿಮ್ಮ ಬಗ್ಗೆ ನಿಮ್ಮ ವಾರ್ಡಿನ ಜನರು ಅಂದುಕೊಳ್ಳಬಹುದು. ಈ ಎಲ್ಲ ಜನರ ಅನಿಸಿಕೆಗಳ ಒಟ್ಟು ಮೊತ್ತವೇ ನಿಮ್ಮ ವಾರ್ಡಿನಲ್ಲಿ ನಿಮ್ಮ ಬ್ರಾಂಡ್ ಆಗಿರುತ್ತೆ. ಅದನ್ನು ಜತನದಿಂದ ಬೆಳೆಸಿಕೊಳ್ಳಿ.

6. ಕೆಲಸ ಮಾಡಿ ಮತ್ತು ಅದನ್ನು ಹೆಮ್ಮೆಯಿಂದ ತೋರಿಸಿಕೊಳ್ಳಿ. ಸಾಮಾಜಿಕ ಸಂಪರ್ಕ ತಾಣಗಳಾದ ಟ್ವಿಟರ್, ಈಮೇಲ್, ಫೇಸ್ ಬುಕ್ ಅನ್ನು ವ್ಯಾಪಕವಾಗಿ ಬಳಸಿ ಜನರೊಂದಿಗೆ ಸಂಪರ್ಕ ಸಾಧಿಸಿ. ತಕ್ಷಶಿಲಾ ಸಂಸ್ಥೆಯ ಸ್ವತ್ತು