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About Harshitha Venkatesh

Politics, Policy Aficionado. Caffeine addict. Biotech Engineer on paper. Passionate about helping elected representatives deliver better. Coordinates political engagement programs.

BBMP Ward Committees

Ward Committees are an effective concept for citizen engagement at the Ward level and critical to our local self-governance in the municipalities. They help in the decentralization of functions and provide better supervision for Ward governance. Composition and functions of a Ward Committee are outlined in the 74th Constitutional amendment to ensure that there is equal representation for all sections [...]

Common Minimum Program – keeping the interest of the citizens in a coalition government

May 2018 elections to the Karnataka State Assembly threw up a hung house with no single political party able to garner majority mark. The situation lead to the formation of a government by two political parties, Indian National Congress and Janata Dal (S), without any pre-poll alliance, and who had fought the electoral battle bitterly. During the election campaigning, each [...]

Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike – Past, Present and Future

Background Constitution of India has made detailed provisions for ensuring the protection of democracy in Parliament and in State Legislatures. But it did not provide adequate powers for the local self-government/ governance leading to democracy not being stable in municipal governance. 74th Amendment of the Constitution   The Bill as reported by the Joint Parliamentary Committee was taken up for [...]

By |2019-02-16T16:37:11+05:30August 20th, 2018|Categories: Participatory Democracy Program, Policy, Politics|0 Comments

Electronic Voting Machine [EVM] and VVPAT [Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail]

The Election Commission of India (ECI) is a constitutional authority responsible for the conduction of free and fair elections in our country. Article 324 of the Constitution vests in the Election Commission the superintendence, direction and control of the preparation of the electoral rolls for, and the conduct of, all elections to Parliament and to the Legislature of every State [...]

Simultaneous Elections in India

Twenty Nine States and Seven Union territories of India have an elected government, going to polls approximately once in five years. About five to seven  State Assemblies/UTs on an average, come up for elections, every year, often spread through the months. Given the resources needed to conduct such frequent elections and the load on the governance thereof, many stakeholders have [...]

By |2018-02-23T15:54:31+05:30February 23rd, 2018|Categories: Elections, Participatory Democracy Program, Politics|0 Comments

Reforming Political Donations in India

Elections, in general, come with a cost, to state exchequer political parties and candidates. Election Commission of India spends a lot of money to conduct free and fair elections to safeguard our democracy. In the 2014 Lok Sabha Elections alone, INR 3,426 Cr was spent by the government, a substantial increase from the 2009 Lok Sabha Elections, INR 1,483 Cr [...]

By |2018-02-20T20:09:57+05:30February 20th, 2018|Categories: Elections, Participatory Democracy Program, Politics|0 Comments

Prioritise Fire Safety demand by Beyond Carlton to the Political Parties of Karnataka

As the Karnataka state goes to elections in next few months, we must ensure our wants and needs for Bengaluru city should communicate to the political parties seeking our votes. We often miss out on talking beyond essential public goods in our needs; fire safety is never seen as a major concern. The need to bring this to the notice [...]

By |2018-02-14T13:50:06+05:30February 14th, 2018|Categories: B.SAFE, Elections, Making Bengaluru Better, Policy|0 Comments

Need for a healthier Political and Public Discourse  

“A government of, by, and for the people requires that people talk to people, that we can agree to disagree but do so in civility. If we let the politicians and those who report dictate our discourse, then our course will be dictated.” - Donna Brazile The quality of the political and public discourse is deteriorating in our society. Of [...]

By |2017-12-29T15:48:12+05:30December 29th, 2017|Categories: B.PAC, Participatory Democracy Program, Politics|0 Comments

An insight into the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike

“In this structure composed of innumerable villages, there will be ever widening, never ascending, circles. Life will not be a pyramid with the apex sustained by the bottom. But, it will be an oceanic circle, whose centre will be the individual, always ready to perish for the village, the latter ready to perish for the circle of the villages, till [...]

By |2017-12-29T15:50:04+05:30December 12th, 2017|Categories: B.CLIP, B.PAC, Participatory Democracy Program, Politics|0 Comments

Your Vote Counts. Register. Vote. Participate.

“To safeguard democracy, the people must have a keen sense of independence, self-respect, and their oneness” - Mahatma Gandhi. How often do you complain about the state of affairs in urban governance? How many times have you thought that the people who are in charge of the governments could do a much better job? How many times have you thought [...]

By |2017-12-07T16:07:05+05:30December 5th, 2017|Categories: Participatory Democracy Program|0 Comments