Nityanand Jayaraman Jayaraman
I am a Chennai-based writer and social activist. I am also a part of the voluntary anti-corporate collective called the Vettiver Koottamaippu.
Image Source: independent
A Clean, Safe, Inclusive Chennai is Possible
Want to Know How You Can Be Involved?
Numerous youngsters and older volunteers extended crucial assistance in the immediate aftermath of the floods. During those days, people were the government – epitomising the democratic spirit enshrined in the Constitution. If the flooding disaster brought us together and spurred us to action, other disasters – like our garbage crisis and the developmental disaster that has turned our cities into concrete jungles – should also inspire us to get more involved.
Training-cum-strategy discussion workshops are proposed to be held on the following three topics.
■ GarbageWatch – Understand why garbage is a problem, and how it can be solved. Evolve strategies to increase public participation in our efforts towards a Zero Waste City
■ SpaceWatch – Understand the spatial features of Chennai – the built-up areas, our open spaces, its waterbodies and other natural features – their importance, what ails them, how to cure these ailments, how to address the housing and livelihood needs of citizens.
■ RehabilitationWatch – Evolve mechanisms for monitoring expenditure by Governmental and non-Governmental agencies in the name of rehabilitation to ensure that the funds are utilised honestly and effectively.
The Training Workshops will familiarise you with all that you need to know about the issue areas to begin working with other like-minded people in challenging the status quo. The strategy workshop will help you evolve clear goals, strategies, tasks and tools to help Reclaim Chennai.
Who Should Attend?
Anyone really. But we are particularly keen on engaging
■ people with a willingness to contribute time and energy and a burning desire to make Chennai a safe, inclusive, clean and corruption-free city;
■ young people and the young-at-heart who are interested in taking action for positive social change, but don’t know how.
■ singers, poets, artists, scientists, lawyers, body-builders – anyone really.
■ youngsters and the young-at-heart.
If you are already an experienced social worker or activist, you may not benefit from the training workshop. But the group would benefit from your presence in the strategy workshop. So please register for that and spare yourself the training.
What Will The Training Workshops Cover?
■ Right to Information Act – Participants will learn how to obtain and use information from various government agencies using the RTI Act.
■ GarbageWatch Training – Understanding Garbage (Status; What the law says; Know the agencies involved (Corporation of Chennai, TNPCB); Understanding solutions and false solutions; International best practices; What you can do)
■ SpaceWatch – Understanding how the City grew, its natural features, built up areas and interactions. Introduction to the Masterplan and the Chennai Metropolitan Development Agencies; The changing coast of Chennai and its vulnerabilities; the state of housing (particularly for low-income groups); Chennai’s wetlands: What we have lost; what can be saved. River restoration plans: Genuine intent or real estate scams. Understanding different agencies involved in administration of the city.
Date: 17th January
Venue: Asian College of Journalism, Taramani, Chennai
Chennai People Can Join the group here: Reclaim Chennai
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