Sunday, February 12, 2012

New Public Body & Expectations of the City!






Effective leadership is putting first things first. Effective management is discipline, carrying it out...Stephen Covey.

Well by this time the elections would have been over & the scene on the horizon of the city's public body i.e. PMC ruling must be clear, as when I started writing the subject Prachar was in full bloom with every candidate busy in telling how they will bring a smooth, trouble free life for the citizen of this very city. Like every Producer/Director of any new releasing movie always says about his movie that “It's different from other movies”, here also every one is promising about the change they will bring in for the city! Agreed our column isn't for elections poll or opinion or political views but unfortunately this side of the society is not only very much closely associated with the infrastructure as well the growth of the city but with entire character of the city! Now, one will ask what is character of the city? Well it’s the way one look at the city & feel the city. Not many years ago the city is known as "Pensioner's Paradise" so the character was a cool, cozy laid back attitude with very less hustle of traffic & movement on streets, where the shops used to open up at 10 am & get closed for afternoon nap & by 8pm the whole city used to get stand still! Slowly with passing years we changed our character as "Education Capitol" with increasing number of students from all part of the country till recent times where as now we call our self proudly as IT as well Industrial Hub & even with growing number of auto industries  "Detroit of West"!

Remember, no tags come free of cost! And adhering to the same not only the city has changed the character but the needs also have changed & here the election of Public Body comes in picture when related to city growth. Home is the very basic & primary need of any citizen & as the city is getting the tag which is related to giving employment to many new comers naturally this very need of homes is also on constant increase is a fact. Question is not about how is Real Estate segment doing question is, are we in position to provide the homes to thousands of needy ones? And sadly the answer is no! Here again many will say its greed of the Real Estate Developers which is not allowing to make the home prices in budget of needy ones! Partly yes but in any failure it’s never a single point reason especially when the subject is as complex as Home front. After all a city is not ruled by just developers but by the people & the public body they vote & the policies this public body makes! Here is where we have to look for fulfillment of our expectation. As these are the people to whom we have voted are going to make the policies which will be giving this city strength to stand for the character it has got!

The city needs good home & a good home is not only judged on the basis of cost or amenities or how much it will appreciate in future but a good home is the quality of life it's surrounding offers to the person living in it. And quality doesn't mean Italian Marble flooring or Luxurious Bath room Fittings , that any one can have as per his spending capacity. Quality of surrounding is to be felt by moving on the streets of the city, it has to be seen on the faces of the citizen & shared in their talks. Today we keep on reading about the expectations about the city from the citizens on all forums right from media to talk shows. Again agreed no one can fulfill all the expectations of the society but can at least try for it & the problem is people feel no one is even trying to fulfill their expectations! And what are the expectations? Surely no body is asking for the ride to moon but very basics like proper water, good public transport, clean roads, encroachment free foot paths & cycle tracks, affordable education & medical facilities are few of them. This no one can buy individually but it’s the outcome of the policies the rulers of the public body will decide & execute up on the same. This is the responsibility elected members will be carrying & to whom if not them the common man should look for? The people have voted for the expectations & these expectations will decide the faith of the character of the city in coming years.

Again not going in to politics yet can’t resist to mention that in the campaign there was a common tone by many that if they get single handed majority then they can make the difference! Here the common man may think how can doing good be a different agenda for different parties? Does the definition of a good city differs from person to person? At some extent it may, like going for Metro under the ground or over the ground but what about strengthening the existing public transport & making the road net work fast? Why the DP of the city has been kept at hold for so long & when passed yet issue which is of grave importance to the reducing Biodiversity within & around the city has been kept hanging? There are many vacant pockets in the newly (now even this term has become old)  acquired villages, so why the lands reserved for various purposes are not being acquired fast enough & developed for the purposes it has been reserved? How there can be difference in opinions for such cause? Why all the elected members can’t come together for fulfilling the expectations for what they have been elected? Here why can’t we forget the boundaries of the party & let subject of city development rules over their flags? Many may laugh at the innocence of this thought but these are the questions a common man keeps fighting as he knows their only lays the way to getting his dream fulfilled of having a small home with good surrounding & proper infrastructure that too at price affordable to his pocket! I think we all have that much right to ask such questions to those whom we have voted & elected!

I think the new body has a great responsibility as the city is undergoing lots of changes& coming years will be deciding what character we will have or go characterless? As it’s shocking that 40% of the population resides in slum which some 30 years back was unheard of in this city!  Also it doesn't mean that the lucky 60% who resides in proper form of home are happy with the infrastructure outside their home & have no complaints about the city. One can buy best furniture in his house by spending money but can’t get even a foot length drainage line outside of his building or get the piece of public road paved properly is a fact. That's job of public body & it’s a big responsibility as these millions of voters need roads & drainage & things like that & for that they will held the elected members only responsible! As making these policies fast & implement them is sure way to make the need of home for every citizen gets fulfilled. It may not be the only way but the more & more vacant land comes under proper purpose for which it has been reserved with evenly distributed infrastructure all around the city will surely help in balancing the home prices evenly. Or else the current situation is where all infrastructure is there the prices are way above budget because of the limitation of such lands & where prices are in budget there is no basic infrastructure like water & drainage leave apart social things like schools & medical facilities, so there no one can live happily. And in all such situation those who have home are facing problems like poor public transport, water shortage & many more are continuing to face the life cursing the city itself! Surely this is not the sign of a good city & if not acted immediately the picture is going to get deteriorated fast is writing on the wall! Hope our new rulers are able to read it! After all it's not just the people in the city individually but the expectations of the city in itself, is what matters! This is what the elected members have to realize while taking the charge of the city.

Agreed the situation isn't going to change in one night but remember this one night is made up of five years & its our job doesn't end by just voting once in five years! Like the quote says the job of making our leaders realize about the first things will be on ever, then only we can expect of materializing them in existence!




--
Sanjay Deshpande

Sanjeevani Dev.

Envo-Power Committee, Credai, Pune

Please do visit my blog to know about our philosophy at Sanjeevani !

http://visonoflife.blogspot.com/

Social Side of Sanjeevani !

http://www.flickr.com/photos/65629150@N06/sets/72157628805700569/

For any of your complaints about city, log in at link below

http://www.punecorporation.org/GRS/Complaint/LaunchComplaintCitizen.aspx

Think Green, Think Life

www.sanjeevanideve.com

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Conserving Biodiversity in Urban Life!








It is that range of biodiversity that we must care for - the whole thing - rather than just one or two stars of ratings... David Attenborough.


We all have a terrace or balcony now a days to our flats, some more luckier have got garden also to their homes or flats! It's important how we utilize the space. Many a times its saddening to see that the terrace place is being used for dumping the surplus items in the house where as we can use the same place for some planters as not only they give a nice look but they can give shelter to many a species around. With increasing urbanization around which is a fact we are forgetting a major aspect & that is reducing habitat ie space for other species. Not many years ago the city has sighting of many birds right from "Bhardwaj" to "Bamni maina"  & even Bats at late evening time & now days we don't get to see even common Sparrow leave apart Bhardwaj! All we can see but pigeons that too pet types by few of the street people having them. The reason behind this phenomenon is trees are giving away for buildings & though there is new plantation it will take time tow grow at it fullest & not many trees planted newly are fit to accommodate the bird species around. Like a Chafa tree may look very nice & flowering but because of its leaf & branches arrangement no bird makes its nest on Chafa tree! New building does have trees planted but till the time those trees grows a life cycle got disturbed & broke. It will take many years to restore the same & see the birds back in city & this will need a combined effort from all segments of the society. Local body's like PMC are doing there bit by making gardens & builders have been mandatory to plant one big tree per 80 sq m of plot area but then what is an individuals role in this? We  all must try to promote the plantation in whichever way & conserve the biodiversity is one sure way we can do.

Recently I had been to Singapore & as I have always mentioned the city never stops in trying hard to conserve the nature. In one such effort they have made a largest confined bird park naming Jurong Bird Park. Here they have made special bird feeder trays so as the birds can drink water & eat their food  from visitors making the common man expose to various species & creating a sense of belonging towards the birds over there. I have seen similar trays in many of the Singapore residences in their balconies amongst planters. Important is they understand the need of conserving biodiversity in concrete jungle & are doing their bit & that's why in cities like Singapore you never feel getting lost in gray shade of buildings but both i.e  trees giving shelter to birds & buildings sheltering human beings survives together!

After coming back from my trip the first thing I did was called my fabricator & got a bird feeder designed which will have a water bowl & grain bowl & got it fixed at my office terrace & amazing results its giving! With numbers of birds coming to feed as well bath also as have got some bathing bowls at terrace for birds! What one has to take care is have planters in the terrace so as the birds will be at ease while coming to the feeder. I have came across many a people who does try on their own things like keeping water bowls or container with grains in their terrace but the birds don't visit is their complaint! Well we need to understand that species like birds are very careful while visiting any new place as they have to ensure their privacy as well safety first! If we keep it in too open then they might not come also as I mentioned have some planters first so the greenery will make them at their comfort & then they will start visiting slowly.

In city like Pune there are many stories of individual’s efforts about tress & birds conservation with number of citizens trying their share on the front. Need is to understand the concept of conservation & then act. Many a feel what’s so fuss about it? What’s big deal if we don't see some sparrows or crows regularly? Are not there are enough gardens as well trees for them? Then why one has to do it by individual & waste the place like terrace or balcony when the prices of homes are so high? Well remember when on any vacant land there isn't any building then the piece of land is shelter for many species right from termite to rats to ants & obviously some birds who can wander there undisturbed. But once a building comes up there the whole life cycle gets disturbed & the species get dispersed from the land for making human homes. And this damage can’t be balanced by making some gardens rather creating a small piece of biodiversity in each of home is proper way to doing it.
 
Reducing biodiversity is cause of concern in urban development & as adhering to Attenborough's quote its not just to show or for some rating but its for the true cause we all should work on this front. And trust me it's a great relaxation also to watch those birds come & chirp around your little terrace. Then you will realize what you were missing in your city life & give you satisfaction of having the full value for the money you paid for your home!


Plz contact us for any assistance at...

sales@sanjeevanideve.com / technicals@sanjeevanideve.com

Cell no of atul ( fabricator)  -9422031832

Click the link below for snaps..

http://www.flickr.com/photos/65629150@N06/sets/72157629212383505/


Sanjay Deshpande

Sanjeevani Dev.

Envo-Power Committee, Credai, Pune

Please do visit my blog to know about our philosophy at Sanjeevani !

http://visonoflife.blogspot.com/

Social Side of Sanjeevani !

http://www.flickr.com/photos/65629150@N06/sets/72157628805700569/

For any of your complaints about city, log in at link below

http://www.punecorporation.org/GRS/Complaint/LaunchComplaintCitizen.aspx

Think Green, Think Life

www.sanjeevanideve.com

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Seeing the Forests!







If you cut down a forest, it doesn't matter how many sawmills you have if there are no more trees. Susan George.

How perfectly put & yet we ignore the importance of forests even when we visit them!
 
Winter has its own charm in Knaha ! And I agree to it fullest ,though was a bit scary about the temperature which drop to sub zero at a times. Yet to visit Kanha is such a desire that it overcomes the fear of the cold & ultimately the wish to be in forest wins as usual! However chill the winter cold may be yet the forest never stops amazing you by the constant action happening within provided you should have an eye for it! And the fact that Kanha is a Sal tree forest mostly so the temperature is further down because its always green in compare to other forests where winter makes trees shade the leafs!

Each specie has got its way to tackle with cold but with their natural limitations most prefer to be in huddle & stay close & share the warmth of each others body! The owls are classic example,they will huddle in a hole of a tree & what a sight they make! Even the monkey cubs keep sticking to their mothers to beat the cold. Visiting forest in such extreme seasons shows us so many things & make us think how lucky we are for being human beings as we have so many ways to protect our self from the extreme weather! Though not all are lucky for eg the forest guards who have to patrol on feet or mostly by cycle in the forest exposing not only to the cold but to many a wild animals which can be dangerous if came across at wrong timing! Like you cycling right in the path of a mating couple of Tiger, the animal is very moody at such times & can attack any intruder! Imagine the helplessness of the guard whose only weapons are his two legs & how fast he can run or climb on a near by tree! Visiting forest for fun or for wild life seeing is one thing but living their for your work for life time is different ball game. I have never understood why the govt can provide proper infrastructure like good vehicles or proper attire with equipments to the guards on whom task like protecting the forest is depending! Very basic things like waky-talky or guns also are not with all guards leave apart things like battery operated bikes or vehicles! It always hurt my mind when I see the forest guards with bare minimum equipments or nothing! I With all due respect to forest department we need to improvise a lot on this front is a fact. And we expect the forest to grow & the animals to survive!

Same is with many local people who works in forest as labors for their daily survival. The visitors when they ask each other "sighting
hui kya?" A common question exchanged between the roaming tourists, means "have you seen the tiger?" It's unfortunate they unsighted such sights of people working bare foot in forest in cold & think of doing nothing for contributing to improve their condition & the list includes so called many VIP's from govt who can surely make the difference if the see with open eyes the forest & the people working in it! The term sighting is restricted to Tiger rather whenever any one asks me have I had sighting my reply is there is so much to sight that any time you spend in forest is less! The forest is never dead,its always alive with something & this one needs to look for with open eyes. Once you achieve that vision then the sighting is all around you & not restricted for the tiger only!

Another factor which concerned me is at Pench Tiger Project right outside the boundary of the park I saw boards saying many plots are available for sale & resorts are mashrooming around. With growing numbers of tourists at such places its bound to happen but important is we need to keep a buffer zone for expansion of the forests to accommodate species like Tiger. As to my knowledge each tiger has its own territory & if we need to increase numbers of tigers then we need to give the space which they requires! And each tiger territory is in a way life system in itself including plants & the prey animals like dear. When we say to conserve the forest its not just taking care of existing forests but to plan for their expansion also so as more & more land should come under forests! While making future plans of urban growth around the forests this aspect has to be taken in account which seems missing presently.


To achieve that one has to ask himself why are you visiting the forests? Does our trip ends just at the sight of Tiger? Again sadly most of the tourists visits places like Kanha for fun & don't feel any responsibility towards the forest. The laughter & the noise many groups make while moving through the forests is shocking ,as if they are on beach or in some fun fare & the only target for many is to see the tiger that's all! I won't blame the tourists right from the tour operators to guides to Gypsy drivers too even the tourism departments of govt all are busy in luring them on the name of Tiger! Naturally the person visiting is seeing for Tiger other than the sighting any thing in forest! Some where the system related to the forest needs to understand this & change the pattern of adverting forests. "The Land of Tiger" must be advertised as "The Land of Forests", so the visitor will be mentally open what he is going to see & then he can sight what is need of the time & the job of forest department will be much easier!

I think that's real meaning of visiting the forest or else its like visiting any urban shopping center, you go there shop & forget about the place once you are out of it! What we see that only will make us act & for that we have to learn to see the forest as whole & not just one Tiger as we can't save the poor guy individually but only making the entire surrounding survive can help  & that's we need to sight!



--
Sanjay Deshpande

Sanjeevani Dev.

Envo-Power Committee, Credai, Pune

Please do visit my blog to know about our philosophy at Sanjeevani !


http://visonoflife.blogspot.com/


Social Side of Sanjeevani !


http://www.flickr.com/photos/65629150@N06/sets/72157628805700569/

For any of your complaints about city, log in at link below


http://www.punecorporation.org/GRS/Complaint/LaunchComplaintCitizen.aspx
Think Green, Think Life

www.sanjeevanideve.com