March 2, 2017: A red-letter day for Bengaluru citizen activism

March 2, 2017: A red-letter day for Bengaluru citizen activism

Submitted by Editor on Thu, 2017-03-02 19:59 Bengaluru: The state government's decision to scrap the controversial steel flyover project is a huge victory for citizen activism in the city. Rarely had the city seen so many people join hands and take on the might of the government, both online and offline, for saving the city's ever-dwindling green cover. Though the BJP might like to deny it, the steel flyover project was first mooted during the BJP's rule in 2011. But it was announced by the Congress government headed by CM Siddaramaiah in the 2014-15 budget.Right from the beginning, the project was mired in controversy for not being transparent and for its high environmental cost, as close to 800 trees were set to be axed for the project.A series of protests soon began to stall the project. More than 35,000 people signed an online petition on change.org against the flyover proposal. Over 1lakh people gave a missed call to Jhatkaa, an organisation campaigning for saving Bengaluru's trees, opposing the project. When the government didn't budge, the Namma Bengaluru Foundation filed a Public Interest Litigation against the project in October. Later, thousands participated in the 'Beda' campaign as well.But the indifferent government went ahead and handed over the project contract to L