Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Year 2018 to 2019

Wishing all my Friends and Family Merry Christmas and a Fantastic 2019 ahead.

May 2019 bring Mountains of Success, Ocean of Happiness, Sky of Good Health, Earth of Glory

#StayFit #HappyNewYear 

Warm Regards,
Kavitha Reddy
AICC Member & KPCC Spokesperson 

Year 2018 to 2019

As 2018 passes by, a long and eventful year ends on definitely a satisfactory note. With a successful corporate career of 14 years, as a Entrepreneur, as Mountaineer and as Lake Activist I sure know the ups and downs in every space. Mistakes, Failures and Perceptions all have to be taken with same spirit as Success, Glory and Recognition. 

Think Big, Dare to Dream was the thinking when I took a very bold step to asked Indian National Congress to give me an opportunity to contest from Bommanahalli AC. Sheer Nerve and willingness to fight an election in one of the toughest Constituency kept me going. 

Debating on TV channels on behalf of the Party, being part of the Campaign Committee lead by the master of elections Shri DK Shivakumar, being appointed as AICC Member all came to me without asking. 

Even after being the front runner for Bommanahalli AC ticket, losing it to someone who is not even from the Constituency did come as a rude shock, but also reality that my Reddy surname will always be my biggest enemy was evident. 

Yes, I was angry, disappointed as I did not get the real reason for not been given the ticket, even as I continued my assignment from Campaign Committee as incharge of Kolar and Chikkaballapur districts, I spent little time in my own Constituency as I felt I was not needed and was sidelined. I did carry the anger further as INC candidate lost very badly and could not make even a small impact, letting  a larger victory for BJP.

Almost a year and half business took a back seat and a huge hit, even though my NGO and Lake Activism continued, bringing back business on track has been a huge challenge and the downward trend across the nation has been making it even more difficult. 

Someday I had to make peace that I may never be given an opportunity to contest elections, nor can I change my surname, or may be until I get to ask for an opportunity anywhere else other than Bengaluru District, let that someday be in 2018 itself. 

I have carried the Stress, Insult and Mental Harassment for long, I have also learnt from my mistakes. I do not know what my future in politics is since I do not have a parent in politics nor a godfather, but what I have is an ability and commitment to continue giving my best in whatever is given to me.

Politics is indeed tough for Independent Women, but when did I ever choose what was easy, just that this time around I will continue to fight my battle little differently. 

Technically I can rate 2018 as a bad year for me, but foundation for all good that can happen in 2019 was laid in 2018, letting go the Stress of 2018 and hoping 2019 will be a better year for me.

Build NOT Born where there are no Entitlements

Friday, December 21, 2018

Events & Programs 2018

26th Dec, Wednesday - KPCC Media Lounge opening

22nd Dec, Saturday - Meeting with Joint Commissioner BBMP Bommanahalli Zone

19th & 20th Dec - Conclave on Improving Economic Participation of Women in Andhra Pradesh
18th Dec, Tuesday - Karnataka High Court (Agara Lake case)
16th Dec, Sunday - Gender Equality Run, Kaagaz Foundation
12th Dec, Wednesday - Karnataka High Court (Agara Lake case)
9th Dec, Sunday - Agara Lake review meeting & BCLIP Milana (Reunion)
8th Dec, Saturday - India Women's Caucus - Shakti, Panchayat to Parliament Women Reservation Bill
6th Dec, Thursday - Installation of Water Purification Units in Schools & Colleges 
2nd Dec, Sunday - Spoke at Blr North District Mahila Congress Social Media Workshop
1st Dec, Saturday - Visit to Vonisha School (Bridge School, under Govt SSA) 
30th Nov, Friday - Lead Street Vendor delegation to meet Shri DK Suresh, MP
29th Nov, Thursday - Iblur Govt Primary School, meeting regarding access road for children 
27th Nov, Tuesday - Green Ambassador Program (Haralur Govt School, Hosa Road Govt School)
20th Nov, Tuesday - Singasandra School, Karnataka High Court (Agara Lake case)
19th Nov, Monday - KPCC, Indira Gandhi Birth Anniversary
18th Nov, Sunday - Sportzify Womenasia 10K Run
16th Nov, Friday - Kar Street Vendors Association meeting
15th Nov, Thursday - Chief Guest at MLA College Program
14th Nov, Wednesday - Meetings of Mahila Congress and Bommanahalli AC  
13th Nov, Tuesday - Education Dept meeting (Agara Govt School incident), AG GoK meeting on Agara Lake
9th Nov, Friday - Meeting with Shri Rizwan Arshad regarding Bellandur Ward & Media
9th Nov, Friday - Protest on DeMon that was imposed on people on India on 8th Dec 2016
7th Nov, Wednesday - E-Waste Drop Center
4th Nov, Sunday - Street Plays in 3 locations, #PatakkiBittaki Campaign
31st Oct, Wednesday - Press Meet, B.PAC Alumni Association Patakki Bittaki Campaign Launch
31st Oct, Wednesday - Visit to Agara Govt High School (Green Ambassador Workshop)
26th Oct, Thursday - Meeting with Chairman KSPCB regarding Safe, Clean, Green Deepavali
23rd Oct, Tuesday - OBT for Vodafone, Basecamp Adventures
19th Oct, Friday - Ayudha Pooja at Agara Lake
17th Oct, Wednesday - Meeting with Forest Minister GoK
14th Oct, Sunday - Skechers Performance Run 10K
13th Oct, Saturday - Bengaluru Lakes, Floods Mgmt, Speaker at KLE Society's S Nijalingappa College
6th Oct, Saturday - Deccan Herald Event
2nd Oct, Tuesday - Plogging at Mangamanapalya Lake
23rd Sept, Sunday - Wipro Run 10 Kms
8th & 9th Sept, Saturday & Sunday - Clay Ganesha Making Workshop
6th Sept, Thursday - BBMP, Ganesha idol immersion meeting
1st Sept, Friday - Meeting with DyCM GoK, Civic issue of Silver County Road and surrounding areas
28th Aug, Tuesday - Meeting with ACS Forest Dept and Chief Secretary GoK, Agara Lake legal issues
20th-23rd Aug - Kodagu Relief Work 
16th Aug, Thursday - DULT & KSPCB meeting along with B.PAC
15th Aug, Wednesday - Blood Donation Camp
12th Aug, Sunday - HSR 10K Freedom Run
30th June, Saturday - Karnataka Mahila Congress State Executive Meet
27th June, Wednesday - Minister visit to Agara Lake
13th June, Wednesday - Meeting with Kar DyCM & Blr Rural MP
9th June, Saturday - Kere Utsava
5th June, Tuesday - World Environment Day, Agara Lake
2nd June, Saturday - Agara Lake maintenance drive with ALPMS - AVL

Saturday, December 15, 2018

She the Law-Maker

Millions of Women Elected Representatives in Panchayat and Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) since 1993, yet we have fewer Women in Assemblies and Parliament, while many men who were Elected in Panchayat or ULBs have made it to the Assemblies and Parliament, the Women are left far behind, making it a fit case to analyze why the women reservation is actually not empowering women politically at the Panchayat and ULB level.

Women reservation at the Panchayat and ULBs was hailed as a revolutionary step, but little did we know how reservation would be misused for the benefit of the few powerful. Male Leaders fielding female relatives as proxy candidates to hold on to power is rampant, far fewer independent women get opportunities at the Panchayat level. In the ULBs where elections are fought on Party tickets the scenario is no different, women workers in the political parties are sidelined in favor of female relatives of the male leaders who keep the power within the family as and when the reservations rotate. If women reservation was implemented with the right intent and with the spirit to create a pipeline of women leaders, more Councilors and Corporators like their male counterparts would have aspired to become MLAs and MPs.
Yes, in reality the women reservation at Panchayat and ULBs has been misused, but does it make an argument not to pass the Women Reservation Bill, and stall the political empowerment of 50% of our population? Well, drunk driving is no reason to ban cars, and there is a need to find ways to end political power becoming family extension of male leaders in the name of women reservation.

Even though every major political party talks about making the Women Reservation Bill a reality, and have proudly put it in their manifesto, the Bill is still gathering dust, and discourse on political empowerment of women by the political parties is a mere lip service.

Deeper argument is also that political parties have few women in their decision-making bodies in the organization structure, so expecting them to give more tickets to women is a far cry. Why are political parties reluctant to field women candidates in Assembly and Parliament elections? And two common excuses are Winnability or(and) Lack of ticket seekers!

Winnability, rather non-winnability is the most common excuse given by every political party in every election, but actual data calls their bluff, on the scale of winnability women have done better than men. Also, when all men who get tickets don’t win why is the responsibility of winning is so heavily pushed as a criterion on women? Assuming even if winnability is an issue than, it’s all the more important to pass the Women Reservation Bill so that it’s the women who are contesting against each other in the women reserved constituencies.

Lack of ticket seekers, when winnability claims gets questioned this becomes the next safe excuse, and certainly the most bogus argument. When political parties claim to have women wing in their organization, how can one accept the lack of ticket seekers as a legitimate claim? Debunking this claim is the huge increase in the number of independent women candidates over the last 20 years in the Assembly and Parliament elections, indicating how keen women are in fighting elections and being part of political process.

50% of the Indian population is not equally represented in the lawmaking process both in the State and in the Center, any argument to further delay the Bill is injustice and political exile for the women of this country. From Panchayat to Parliament women reservation has to be seamless, and unless we do not see 50% of the population represented in the Assemblies and Parliament our law-making process is not inclusive indeed.

Women Reservations does not mean women have to be judged differently on competency or performance nor it’s an entitlement or one more avenue to push the female relatives of male leader. It is about providing a level playing ground for women to be part of the political spectrum and be counted as lawmakers.

Make no mistake, India needs inclusivity in its lawmaking process and today lawmaking is almost an exclusive men club in which views of 50% population of this nation are excluded.

Patriarchy has no place in new age politics, time has come to end the political exile of the women. Parties have to demonstrate political will and empower women of this nation politically, women are no political pariahs!

Kavitha Reddy
AICC Member & KPCC Spokesperson
(views expressed are in personal capacity)

Published in B.PAC Blog 

Monday, December 10, 2018

India Women's Caucus

Political Empowerment is long due for the 50% of the Population of India, with 33% - 50% Reservations in Local Bodies still Women Elected Representatives in Assemblies and Parliament is a dismal 10-15% and lags behinds countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh! 

No law can be better no national debate is inclusive if 50% of the population is kept out on law making process. Even though all political parties agree that Women Reservation Bill #WRB has to be passed and implemented, there seems to be less intent to actually table the Bill and pass it with unanimity, hence there is a need to create pressure groups external to political parties via various forums and groups. 

India Women's Caucus - Shakti is indeed a right step in the direction to exert much need pressure via public forums on the political parties to not only to have 50% of their party office bearers as women but also pass the #WRB at the earliest and give the much needed and Right to Political Power to the Women of this great nation. 

The News Minute - Coverage

Friday, December 7, 2018

INC Manifesto - Environment, Urban Infra & Mobility

Image may contain: 2 people

Thank You for the opportunity given to me to share my inputs for the INC Manifesto 2019 on Urban Infra & Mobility.

Urbanization is a reality and more and more population are moving towards Urban areas, and more and more villages are becoming towns and towns are becoming cities. Even though Indian % of Urbanization is lesser than the global % the sheer population density poses a greater challenge than any other country.

Urban Infra is about Roads, Transport, Water, Power, Sewage Disposal, Garbage, Education, Health, Industry, Sports, Employment, Urban Poor, Safety, Parking, Housing, Lakes, Environment (Air, Water, Soil Pollution) all of it!

Hence Urban areas need high focus on each of the aspects due to sheer population density.

Firstly, JnNRUM has to be brought back with much focus on each of the Urban infra issue and funds have to be allocated to every Urban project.

Similar to MSW Policy, there has to be a policy on taking Sewage in UGDs and treatment to reuse, even in smaller towns and cities.

Urban poor haven been excluded in the Urban policy making, 32% of the Urban poor who are largely migrants and floating population need livelihood safety net. Even though UPA brought in the Street Vendor Bill 2014, Street Vendors even in 2018 have not been given ID cards nor Vending Zones are created to enable them to do business with dignity and without harassment. Street Vending globally is considered and encourage as an eco-friendly model as they do not consume power not the volume of waste generated is large, and their business is limited hours too, hence our Urban infra has to be inclusive to accommodate globally accepted model.

Cities like Bengaluru will soon run out of water unless we start accepting the fact that Lakes are indeed RWH zones. The spread of the rainfall is the concern but the quantity of rainfall has not a threat if Urban areas are able to store water and also recharge ground water tables. Since there is a need to a Central and State Water Policy, Urban Lakes should also be considered under this policy even though the objective of Lakes/Tanks are different from Rural and Urban areas. Key step like taking the Sewage in UGDs itself is enough to revive City Lakes with less funding interventions.

MSW is a monster of an issue, not only Cities even Towns and Village are slowing been consumed by the Garbage crisis, when Singapore that has the highest Air pollution standards can have Waste to Energy Plants why not India? It’s well known that only less than 20% of waste is recycled globally and good to hear words like 100% segregation is not even close to reality globally, hence letting Villages, Towns, Cities suffer is a crime. More emphasis and funds have to be allocated towards Technology interventions for Garbage Treatment.

Empower ULBs, even after the 74th amendment the ULBs are suffering in from direct intervention of the MLAs and State Govt. Since ULBs are not made self-sustainable the dependency on State is making the ULB Administration weaker, hence I propose the revamped JnNURM to directly fund the ULBs and enable them to raise funds via Infra Bonds and Green Bonds. Also, there is a need to share the Road Tax that the State Govt collects with the ULBs, today with over 12lac vehicles on Road in Bengaluru, one can ask how much Road Tax is given to BBMP from the Transport Dept. 

Incentives & Tax Holiday for State Govt for creating Satellite will encourage the State Govt to decongest-congest cities like Bengaluru. 

Monday, December 3, 2018

Mythri Mahila Koota

Mythri Mahila Koota (MMK) has always been helping Children from deprived, difficult and less privileged background in their own little way. 

Vonisha Foundation is running a Bridge School via Begur Govt School where over 100+ Children are provided Education, Transport, Food, Uniform, Books fully free of cost, since I run an NGO Kaagaz Foundation Vonisha Team got in touch with me asking for support to precure Books, when I asked MMK if they can help they instantly obliged and got over 500 books for the children. Via BPAC Civic Hub I also gave them a weighing machine and first-aid kit.

- Kavitha Reddy

Monday, November 26, 2018

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Green Ambassador - Winners

Green Ambassador Program (GAP) - Winners

GAP is a Certificate Program for School/College students that provides them with an opportunity to learn about Environmental issues (Garbage, Water, Lakes, Air & Soil Pollution) of our immediate concern and equip them to take up initiatives towards becoming agents of change.

The course aims at creating a problem-solving community of young individuals who play the important role of a catalyst between the community and the local government in addressing the problem of waste management plaguing the city.

Following are the key components of this certificate program:

Sensitizing students to persistent Environmental, Garbage & Civic problems 
- Introducing them to various available solutions to these problem
- Providing a platform to interact with Civic Leaders and learn from them 
- Helping them make Bengaluru Cleaner & Greener city through their actions

The program has four parts:

- Classroom Session (Theory)
- Role Play
- Field Activity (Clean-up Drive or Door-to-Door Segregation Campaign)
- Create from Waste - Contest

Post the successful completion of the program certificate are issued and the best 3 items under the Create from Waste will be given prizes.

Recently we had completed GAP in 7 Schools in Bommanahalli Constituency taking up the total number of Students completing GAP Course to 890+ and since this is an ongoing program via Kaagaz Foundation supported by B.PAC the target is to complete 1000 this academic year. 


Monday, November 19, 2018

Run to Finish!

Beautiful cold November morning, my 3rd 10K Race in 3 months and getting better each day! With a good lead from start to finish I had no doubt that I would better my timing but also will take a podium stand, 2nd place was then aim but was happy with a 3rd spot in 65 minutes! 

Been out of the mountains for almost a year, so I guess Running is helping me stay fit for the next mountain season, in hope to climb a couple of peaks next year! And till then Running and participating in Races will be a good High! 

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Patakki Bittaki

Air Pollution is a serious concern across the Nation, and more so in all major cities. Firecrackers add more poisonous gases and particles to Air Pollution that can cause several Health problems. 

Child Labour, Fireworks Accidents, Air Pollution, Water Pollution, Noise Pollution all are reality of Firecrackers. After taking notice of the situation across the country the Apex Court finally passed the order to ban Firecrackers, with some relaxation approving Fireworks for 2hrs for 3 days during Deepavali.

B.PAC-B.CLIP Alumni team with support from Karnataka State Pollution Control Board and BBMP came together to take #PatakkiBittaki campaign to all Wards across Bengaluru. With Street Plays, Awareness Programs, Pledges in Schools and Social Media Campaigns.

In HSR Layout, Kavitha Reddy via Kaagaz Foundation took the lead to organize various events and Street Plays were conducted in 27th Main, Somasundrapalya Circle and Agara Lake very successfully. B.CLIP Leaders and HaSiRu Mithra members Lalithamba and Ramakrishna Reddy lead the School program and encouraged children to take Pledge in Chinmaya Vidya Mandira, Somasundrapalya Govt School & Vibgyor School. Rohini Reddy, Jigna Modh, Vasanthi and Kavitha Reddy spoke about #PatakkiBittaki at Agara Govt Primary and Agara Govt High School and administered the Pledge.   

3 Street Plays, 5 Schools covering 2458 Children took the Pledge, and hope these kind of campaigns will create more awareness every year and finally reduce all practices that are not Eco-Friendly. 

Lets hope these kind of regular awareness will lead to a Better Bengaluru.

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Kannada Habba 2018

Attended Kannada Habba organized by Purva Skywood Apartments, spoke about how becoming part of the City and State irrespective of where one comes from and that being a Kannadiga is not just about able to speak Kannada, its also about contribution and service to the City/State you have made it your own! Also spoke about importance of Women & Child Safety and how each of us are responsible to reduce crimes against Women and Children!

Wednesday, October 31, 2018