Saturday, December 24, 2011

PNLIT in today's Business Standard!

Our Puttenahalli Lake features in today's weekend supplement of the Business Standard newspaper. The article titled "Demanding a Refill" focuses on how a few citizens' groups are trying to revive the dying lakes in the city.

The article can be read online here.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Hands-on morning for school children at Puttenahalli Lake

On 19th Dec 2011, about 75 middle-school students of The Brigade School, and some staff members, visited Puttenahalli Lake for a hands-on morning.The children were given a briefing on the condition of the lake prior to its restoration (when it had almost vanished) and they could see the lake for themselves, after restoration. They familiarised themselves with the birds, trees and other life at the lake, through a Nature Walk with expert inputs from avid bird-watchers SK Srinivas and Prasanna. They also spent some time gardening, de-weeding and checking out the on-site waste management.

Photos here

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Innovative cleansing of the lake

In the newspapers yesterday (10th Dec 2011), you may have read about BBMP-PNLIT collaborating with a private firm Enzen Water Solutions to clean the water in the lake using a Nano-Nutrient Solution (NNS).

Since it involved using chemicals, a trial run was done in a cement tank in the coconut grove, taking 15,000 litres of water from the dirtiest part of the lake into the tank. A week after treating the water, Enzen introduced 3 kg of Tilepia fish (22 numbers). Not only did the fish thrive but the water itself steadily gained clarity.

Before filling tank

Treating water with NNS

Water samples on Day 1

Water sample after 3 weeks

The results of the trial were made public in a press conference at the lake on 9th Dec and has generated a great deal of interest as a possible solution to clean our city lakes. Officials from the BBMP, Enzen and PNLIT Trustees addressed the press. News9 is likely to telecast a capsule tonight between 10 and 10.30 p.m. or tomorrow morning.

BBMP may introduce this method to clean the water in a month or so. By purifying the water and increasing the oxygen level, the NNS will control the growth of aquatic weeds and also promote fish life, consequently bringing more birds to our lake. As you can see, we are earnestly working on transforming the lake into an avian habitat.

We need your help to sustain our effort. Please vote for PNLIT in Mahindra's Spark the Rise Championship. Click here and cast your vote. If you have voted already, please forward this message to your family, friends and their friends. One email id = One precious vote. The more votes we get the better the chance to win precious money to maintain the lake!


Saturday, December 10, 2011

India Water Portal (@indiawater) mentioned you on Twitter!

A compliment of a Tweet!

Bird Watch Update - Coppersmith Barbet

PNLIT Shutterbug from South City, Sujesh, spotted "this guy checking out a hole in the dead tree near the lake". The guy is a Coppersmith Barbet which got its name because of its call - like a coppersmith striking metal with a hammer according to wikipedia. The wikipedia entry has some very interesting things to say about the Coppersmith Barbet. Do read it and see if you have Sujesh's eyesight to spot the bird!

Do also use the weekend to vote for PNLIT!
If you have voted already, please forward this message (and the photos) to your family, friends and their friends. One email id = One precious vote. The more votes we get the better the chance to win precious money to maintain the lake!

As of now, our count is only 607 votes! Please let it touch a 1000 by this Monday!


Friday, December 9, 2011

Bird Watch Update - Lesser Whistling Ducks

The number and species of ducks at the lake has increased! The Spot-billed duck pair is resident while more of the migrant Garganey ducks are making Puttenahalli lake, their winter home. They are being joined of late by the Lesser Whistling Ducks (also called the Indian Whistling Duck) because of their distinctive wheezy call, this is normally a resident species. They were last seen in a very large flock in our lake in April this year. Now they are back again and are hobnobbing with the Garganeys! Together they are able to keep the Coots away and are settling down rather nicely. Here's wishing that their population will grow! More info on the Whistling Duck here.

A photo of the two species together which Srini took last evening is here. If you'd like to see the ducks, please look for them towards the slum side about half way along that stretch. They are quite tiny so it will be a good idea to take your binoculars along.

By the way, have you voted for PNLIT in Mahindra's Spark the Rise Championship?? If not, please click on this link and cast your vote.
If you have voted already, please forward this message to your family, friends and their friends. One email id = One precious vote. The more votes we get the better the chance to win precious money to maintain the lake!


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Grabbing opportunities

Citizen Matters Puttenahalli Post

Grabbing opportunities: help us with your vote!

PNLIT , 08 Dec 2011

One doesn't always get an opportunity to do something extraordinary. When you do, you've got to grab it! This is what we did when we saw the Puttenahalli Lake dying. We campaigned and lobbied for the BBMP to rejuvenate the lake. This is what PNLIT did when we saw the Mahindra Spark the Rise announcement inviting projects ("Sparks") for a competitive funding. We submitted "PNLIT - Nurturing Puttenahalli Lake back to its pristine glory" as a template for reviving lakes with active public participation. Click here to vote.

The many activities and events we conduct, such as the Children's Day Nature Walk, are done to enthuse residents in the locality to take care of the lake, to make them feel proud of "their" lake. However, it is a slow, tedious process since our lifestyle is increasingly distancing us and our children from Nature. Environment is something that we take for granted, not something to be nurtured. Freebies like the monsoon and the twitter of birds are often cursed and not appreciated.

We meet the lake maintenance expenses from donations. We often get donors to plant trees. There is not only a monetary value attached to the Sampige or the Neem but also the priceless sentiment that the sapling has been planted by them and their families. They come around to see the tree growing tall and pluck the stray weed growing at its base. Such donations, however, are not really enough for us to transform the lake into the avian habitat that we want it to become.

Mahindra Spark the Rise seemed a very good way to improve the visibility of our efforts and an opportunity for much needed funding. The competition works like this:

- Each month, Sparks are invited in five different categories, and after screening, put up for public voting.
- Each month, 8 Sparks will receive grants of 4 lakh each. Five of these monthly winners will be selected by public vote. Of these, the 2 most-voted will be eligible to participate in the Grand Finale. The remaining three monthly winners will be selected by an expert jury.
- In the Grand Finale, 18 Sparks will compete. The winner will receive Rs. 40 lakh and three runners-up Rs. 20 lakh each.

Our Spark is open for voting through December (called Round 4). Emerging as the grand winner will be a dream come true. It will end our constant search for funds. It will erase the deep rooted concern that the birds which have now begun to flock, nest and roost in our lake may be left to fend for themselves for want of appropriate support.

The public now has a chance to make a difference in this community project. Every vote counts. Please vote for Puttenahalli Lake to enter the Grand Finale. And pass on the link to get others to vote too.

How to vote:
1. Go to
2. Click on popular entries
3. Look for PNLIT. Click on it. Click on 'Vote'.
4. It will ask you to Signup or Login.
5. Click Login to go through Facebook or click Signup to go through email.
6. To Signup, put your name, email and password that you want to signup with. A confirmation mail will go to your email account. You need to click on the link in the email to activate your registration.
7. After activation, you do the same thing to vote.

Don't think that your one vote won't make a difference, because it will!

URL for this article
Copyright © 2007-08 Oorvani Media Pvt Ltd., All Rights Reserved

Saturday, December 3, 2011

The Yediyur episode and related things

BBMP pushing lakes for entertainment (

Extract of the article

In Puttenahalli, residents have managed to stop BBMP's plan to build a bridge over the Puttenahalli lake. Residents here have been working with the BBMP for around two years to revive the lake and have formed PNLIT (Puttenahalli Neighbourhood Lake Improvement Trust) for this. Local Corporator L Ramesh had mooted the idea of building a bridge
from the walkway of the lake to the island in the middle of the lake. "It would be nice to let people go into the island and get a good view of the lake," says L Ramesh.

PNLIT member Usha Rajagopalan says that the project would drive away birds. "There are about 45 bird species, local and migrant, that are visiting the island and areas around the lake. Presence of people will drive them away and also cause the lake to be littered," she says. Usha says that PNLIT's plan itself was to develop the lake as a bird sanctuary, and that trees were planted in the island for this. "The issue is of BBMP looking at lake development from the perspective of entertainment to public. BBMP does not consider the eco-perspective," she says.

L Ramesh says that the project has been dropped due to residents' protest and also since there are not enough funds allocated in the budget for the lake. "BBMP has only Rs 25 lakh funding for the lake this year, which we will use for installing lights around it. The bridge project has been completely dropped," he says.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Spark the Rise - Vote for Puttenahalli Lake

December 1, 2011

Our project
"PNLIT - Nurturing Puttenahalli Lake back to its pristine glory"
is live on Mahindra Rise Spark the Rise (Round 4).

Mahindra is awarding 8 grants (Rs 4 lakh each) through December 2011 - 5 by popular vote and 3 by jury selection.
The two top-voted teams of each month make it to a grand finale
where there are also 4 grand prizes (3 of Rs 20 lakh each and one of Rs 40 lakh).

A grant from Mahindra would change things for PNLIT and our effort at nurturing Puttenahalli Lake.
We need your vote to help win this much needed financial support.

All you need to do is vote and pass the link to others to vote! Every vote counts. You can make a difference.
Voting period 1-31 Dec 2011

See our project plan and vote for us here

A rare sight, about our new visitor

Our lake is full of surprises. One only needs to be vigilant to see what the lake has to offer.

Srini, who now no longer needs any introduction, was the first to spot the Garganey ducks which has been reported in today's Hindu Metroplus.

Today he managed to capture the rare sight of the purple heron eating another bird. The first picture shows the heron gulping down the unfortunate coot and the second shows the heron with a large bulge in its throat, as it struggles to ingest the prey.

I was fortunate (or unfortunate!) to see this happen about a month ago but was so awed by the sight that neither I nor the members of the Bird Watchers Field Club even thought of taking a photograph!


Thursday, November 17, 2011

On Nature and the Walk

The Nature Walk on Sunday, 13th Nov. went off very well with participants mostly from South Bangalore and one enthusiast who came from Malleswaram. They had a whale of a time and, with Deepa as their guide, got a very good introduction to the beautiful flora and fauna at our lake.

It is not only water birds that are attracted to the lake but also land birds. Here are a few of them captured recently by Srini, our bird specialist.

The best of them all is the pair of house sparrows which have been in the news for the diminishing numbers in cities.

The hollow in a dead palm in the coconut grove is the home of a spotted owlet family. I once saw two heads looking out.

The grey headed myna (also called Chestnut-tailed Starling) is another rare sight.

More migrants are coming to the lake. The latest is a flock of Garganey ducks. Srini spotted them this morning at the lake. He says, "This is another first for the lake. The garganey is a long-distance migrant that comes in from Europe. It has never been sighted in the Puttenahalli area before. The ducks were right in the center of the lake, and this is the best shot I could get. This is truly a remarkable event!"

For more photos by Srini look here.

Art work by children at the Nature Walk


Saturday, November 12, 2011

Bird Watch update - 40 avian species spotted!

Date: Sat, Nov 12, 2011

Please see the latest message from our "resident bird specialist", Srinivas, from Puttenahalli.


Please check out my updated album on the birds of Puttenahalli lake.
There are several new additions to the lake: Grey wagtail (Winter migrant); Barn swallow (Winter migrant); Grey-headed mynah (winter migrant); Blyth's reed warbler (Winter migrant); Grey heron; Common moorhen; Plain prinia, among other species.
We have about forty avian species in the lake now.
Picidae: White-naped woodpecker
Sylvidae: Blyth's reed warbler.
Motacillidae: White-browed wagtail; grey wagtail
Accipitridae: Black kite, Brahminy kite, Shikra
Strigidae: Spotted owlet; mottled wood owl
Tytonidae: Barn owl
Hirundinidae: Barn swallow
Apodidae: House swift
Podicipidae: Little grebe
Rallidae: Common coot, purple moorhen, common moorhen
Halcyonidae: White-breasted kingfisher
Ardeidae: :Purple heron; Grey heron; Pond heron; cattle egret; median egret; small egret.
Anatidae: Spot-billed duck; Lesser whistling duck (visitors)
Phalacrocoracidae: Great cormorant; Small cormorant; Indian Shag.
Jacanidae: Bronze-winged jacana; Pheasant-tailed jacana
Cisticolidae: Ashy prinia; Plain prinia
Estrilididae: Scaly breasted munia.
Nectarinidae: Purple-rumped sunbird
Paridae: Great tit.
Psittacidae: Rose-ringed parakeet
Sturnidae: Grey-headed mynah (winter migrant); Common mynah; Jungle mynah
Cheers ... Srini.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

White-naped woodpecker at Puttenahalli lake

Update from Srini, a keen bird watcher from Puttenahalli.

Puttenahalli lake is filled with surprises! Check out this shot I took this morning, taken at the bare tree next to the lake. This is the rarely seen White-naped woodpecker. I've never seen it in an urban setting, but here it is.
And last evening, I saw a large flock of spot-billed pelicans circling over the lake and moving on. Perhaps they were checking out the lake for future use.
Cheers ... Srini.

We hope the spot-billed pelicans decide to move in soon. Will keep you posted. No doubt, Srini will be waiting to welcome them with his camera!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Lake in the rains

Date: Fri, Nov 4, 2011

The recent chopping down of the peepal was a setback but there are many other things to be glad about.

To begin with - the rains. Are we ever so grateful that we don't have to water the plants! The trees are looking fresh and new leaves are sprouting. And yes, the water level is increasing slowly but steadily.

Our weekend volunteers had planted lilies some two months or so ago and they are flowering as you can see in the photos.

We've hired a new gardener cum security. Reddy will clear the aquatic weeds for four hours and then assume his other role as guard. We have told him to ensure that he doesn't disturb the birds or their nests and how many nests there are!

We hope you will visit the lake sometime and take pleasure in all these things as much as we do!


Sunday, October 30, 2011

Public spaces or political spaces?

The Peepal Tree chopped down at Puttenahalli Lake

PNLIT's helpless gardener flanked by tree cutters

Inconsolable gardener

Doctoring in the hope it will sprout once more

Peepal tree planting at the viewing deck 16 Sept. 2010

Mr. Bhoja Shetty and the author beside the peepal tree 17 Oct 2011

Peepal or Bo trees are large and erect with shining heart shaped trees that flutter in the slightest breeze. Seeds in bird droppings let out roots quickly and they grow everywhere, even in little nooks on walls. As its botanical name indicates, Ficus Religiosa is a sacred tree revered in our country. Reluctant to throw away their broken idols or pictures of gods, people leave these at its base. Occasionally they build a temple beside it.

We planted a Peepal tree in the viewing deck at Puttenahalli Lake for three reasons:
1) The viewing deck was made with soil removed from the lake bed during restoration. It cannot take the weight of any building leave alone a temple,
2) Being a large tree it would give ample shade, and
3) Birds would flock to it.

Last year we found a sapling growing in a confined environment but we were unable to remove enough of the roots for it to survive. The second sapling, similarly obtained, was planted on 16th September 2010 by Mr. Bhoja Shetty, 89 years old, retired Conservator of Forests and Mr. Vedanthan, 82 years, former CEO, Astra Research Centre, a Swedish firm. It caught on and we lavished attention on it. It thrived and shot to nearly 15 feet within a year. We got five benches put around it and imagined the time some four or five years later when it would have grown tall enough for birds to roost and nest; when people would sit below it and watch the birds on the branches or in the lake. Our dream crashed when Mr. Mohan Raju, BJP President of Bommanahalli got it chopped down on 29th Oct. 2011.

As trustees who have signed an MOU with the BBMP to maintain the lake, we brought it to the notice of our corporator Mr. Ramesh who got Mr. Mohan Raju to come to the lake and meet us. Mr. Raju's argument was that people would build a temple beside the tree and it would be difficult to evict them.

Our concern is whether citizen initiatives like ours can get undone so easily by political might – by a non-official person acting outside the system of government and carrying out work himself. If only he had told us, we would have arranged for the tree to be carefully removed root and all and replanted it elsewhere, perhaps in a temple premises. On our request, he has agreed to get a Red Silk Cotton sapling to plant in the same spot. We hope he will be as prompt in getting the replacement tree as he was in getting our Peepal cut down.

We also hope that he or any one else with political clout will give a little thought to what some citizens are doing for common good with no personal gain for themselves. In this case, trying to restore a once dying lake and planting trees in a city that desperately needs both.


Sunday, October 9, 2011

Visitors to the Puttenahalli Lake

Date: Sun, Oct 9, 2011

Some 25 members of the Bird Watchers Field Club, Bangalore, led by ardent bird watcher, Deepa Mohan visited the Puttenahalli Lake on 8th Oct.

After spotting the juvenile coots, little grebes and pheasant tailed jacanas and seeing a coot couple building a nest, Deepa called our lake a "nursery." This was the nicest thing to hear about the lake we have been trying very hard to revive and sustain. The nesting shows that the birds feel safe to raise their young ones and the presence of large shoals of fish means that the water is clean enough for them to thrive.

One of the unusual sights we saw was a Purple Heron eating a black bird. We were so taken aback that we, including the photographers, could only gape at it and lost a rare photo opportunity!

The marshy overgrowth which most people ask when we are going to remove is ideal for the birds. The BWFC was delighted to see that our lake has enough vegetation for the waders and other birds. Other lakes in the city which were cleared of the weeds made the water clean but drove away the birds.

After the lake visit, we went to the nearby Arekere Reserve Forest. The group went into raptures at the sight of spiders, insects and butterflies which began flitting after the cloudy sky gave way to the sun. What a beautiful sight it was to see them in so many colours and sizes. And to think that I have gone through the forest very many times in the past and not seen any! The BWFC opened my eyes. Our blogs opened up our lake to everyone in the city. It was what brought Deepa and her team to Puttenahalli Lake!


Photos credit: Sushil Katre, BWFC, Bangalore

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Weekend volunteers, Bird watch update

Date: Thu, Oct 6, 2011

The recent showers are helping our trees grow very well indeed but along with it, the weeds are in profusion too! Please take a little time off this weekend to do some gardening at the lake. Our gardeners will be available to guide you but basically the things you have to do are:
  • Clear the space around the base of each tree, turn the soil over but remember to keep the trough shallow around it.
  • Remove weeds growing in the walking track drains
  • Direct water flow from these drains to the nearest tree
  • Some of the bougainvillea are growing wild. Tie them with gunny ropes so that they spread over the fence. The gardeners have the rope.
  • Check that the trees have not bent or branches broken in the rains. Bent trees must be staked and broken, limp branches cut off cleanly with a knife.
  • The viewing deck needs some deweeding.
  • Our volunteers have planted Portulaca and lilies near the benches on the coconut grove. A few are flowering though most of them are still tiny and can be mistaken for weeds.
In the middle of all this, do take time off to spot any new birds! I've attached a photo of a White-breasted Waterhen which Sujesh took recently. You can hear the call of the Waterhen here.

Very many of the Thespesia along the avenue road are flowering. The Markhamia Lutea (the very tall trees along the coconut grove) are budding.

Photo credit: S. Sujesh

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Bird watch update

Date: Tue, Oct 4, 2011

With winter approaching we expect many bird species to visit the lake.

A Little Egret is a frequent visitor to the lake these days. PNLIT Shutterbug Sujesh took this beautiful picture of the white coloured Little Egret and the taller Purple Heron. He has also shot a rare picture of a Little Grebe coming into breeding plumage.

See if you can spot these the next time you visit the lake!

Photos credit: S. Sujesh

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Joy of Giving Week 2011

This Joy of Giving Week (Oct 2-8, 2011), please "give" to Puttenahalli Neighbourood Lake Improvement Trust (PNLIT).

A citizens' initiative, the PNLIT has been working with the Bangalore municipality (BBMP), to rejuvenate and preserve Puttenahalli Lake in South Bangalore. A couple of years ago, the lake was almost lost to 'development' but it is now a "saved" lake of Bangalore that is teeming with fish and attracting birds. Indeed, the Puttenahalli Lake is an example of what we, the people can achieve with governmental support.

In May 2011, PNLIT became the first citizens' group to be given charge of maintaining a lake. BBMP does not provide any financial support for lake maintenance, so PNLIT meets the lake maintenance expenses from donations made by individuals and other well-wishers. These expenses which include buying saplings, paying salaries of the gardeners, sweeper and other labourers, maintenance equipment, etc., amounts to about Rs. 6 lakhs annually. For PNLIT, this is a labour of love. Our administrative costs are negligible.

Why is Puttenahalli Lake so important that you should support it?
- Because it raises the water table in the area and keeps the wells/ bore wells full.
- Because it prevents flooding during the monsoon.
- Because the trees are a precious green cover to keep the temperature down.
- Because birds and butterflies flock to the lake and have made it their home.
- Because children and adults can see the best of nature in the heart of human habitation.
- AND because without the lake, its entire area of 13 acres 25 guntas will most likely become a concrete jungle.

This Joy of Giving week please support PNLIT. We will make your money go a long way and ensure that the Puttenahalli Lake rejuvenation effort is sustained.

Your donations are exempt u/s 80G of the Income Tax Act.

Cheques in favour of "Puttenahalli Neighbourhood Lake Improvement Trust" can be mailed to the registered office B2, 503, South City, Arekere Mico Layout, Bangalore 560076. Direct transfer to State Bank of India, RBI Layout, Bangalore SB a/c no 31209228099 (for transfer within India - ISSC code SBIN 0004408)

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Bird watching at Puttenahalli Lake

Date: Sat, Sep 10, 2011

Today's bird watching at Puttenahalli Lake was a huge success. At least 30 people had come on this inaugural bird watching. One family came from Jayanagar 4th Block because their little daughter is fascinated with birds and someone had told them about our outing! The very first people to come though were TV9 cameramen and reporter! We asked how they got to know about the bird watching and they said simply that "they have their sources." From 7 a.m. to about 8.30 a.m., they filmed the lake, the birds, the bird watchers and wanted to know how PNLIT ever thought of organizing a bird watch in an urban area! Well, we want to share with everyone the excitement of our lake thriving and attracting so many birds and butterflies.

The TV9 report will be telecast tonight between 10 to 10.30 in both Kannada and English channels.
Our inhouse bird expert, Prasanna Vynatheya and two of his friends, Vishnu and Khusro (the one with the huge lens and camera in the photo) pointed out the various species of birds to an engrossed crowd.

Children were busy taking down notes and adults were scanning the sky and the water, eager to spot a bird before the others! Some of the new birds that the experts sighted were Little Blue Kingfisher, Little Grebe (also called Dabchick), Great Cormorant and of course, our more or less permanent residents the Coots, the Swamp Hens, the Bronze-Winged Jacanas, the Spotted-Bill Ducks and the shy Purple Herons.

All in all, a very satisfactory beginning to the weekend.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

PNLIT walking the anti-corruption talk

September 7, 2011

Simple steps to walk the anti-corruption talk. Here is a recently published article.

At PNLIT, we are happy to say that we have really walked the anti-corruption talk.
  • Trust registration at the sub-registrar's office.
  • Income tax 12AA exemption.
  • Income tax 80G exemption for donors.
  • MOU with BBMP.
We are happy to say that we got past each one of these without giving a single naya paisa for 'chai - kaapi'. How did we do it? We took the time to do the ground work, got all documents that were required, avoided using the submission services of a CA or any other middlemen... but we did it!

If we can, everybody can!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Beautiful birds of Puttenahalli Lake

September 3, 2011

According to Dr S. Subramanya, an authority on lakes, nearly 110 species of birds fully or partially dependent on water have been recorded utilizing the lakes/ tanks in Bangalore. This diversity of birds belongs to 6 avian orders and 25 bird families.

At Puttenahalli Lake, JP Nagar, we have positively identified about 15 species on this list. To see a full list of the birds of Bangalore Lakes and the birds that have been identified at Puttenahalli, check here.

There are a few spotted, some photographed, but yet to be identified.

We are yet to spot any of the migratory birds (expected in Blr end Sept-April). We really hope we are lucky enough to see them at our lake.

We are very happy to share the photos of beautiful birds taken by a well-wisher and photography enthusiast Mr Sujesh S. in August. Here is his picasa web album.

Happy viewing!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Citizens get new traffic signal approved

The Puttenahalli Main Road at the Brigade Millennium arch is chaotic during the peak morning and evening hours. Now a traffic signal at Brigade Millennium arch on Puttenahalli Main Road has been approved!

The chaotic junction at night. Pic: O P Ramaswamy.
PNLIT representatives had discussed the feasibility of getting a signal, with our Puttenahalli Corporator L Ramesh, but we were not sure if the junction would satisfy the requirements of the Traffic Police, that justify the investment. What better way to find out than by putting the Traffic Police on the job!
Our message to the Traffic Police Commissioner, Praveen Sood, in mid-June read:
"The Puttenahalli Main Road in JP Nagar 7th Phase, at the junction of Brigade Millennium arch is in urgent need of some traffic control. The intersection of the two roads leads to Kanakapura Road on one end and Bannerghatta Road on the other and vehicular traffic is virtually uncontrollable. Sometimes, the junction is manned by a policeman. For pedestrians, the road is practically not crossable during the peak hours. Request the Traffic Police to please have a traffic signal put at this junction so that traffic gets under control.”
Within two weeks of sending the request, Inspector Nagaraj (of Jayanagar) and Inspector Dharnesh (who was in-charge of the junction at the time – he has now moved to a different police station), visited the junction to assess the need for a signal and invited me to join them. They observed the traffic for a while and spoke to nearby shopkeepers and pedestrians to get their views. They concluded that, presently, the need for a signal is during the peak morning and evening hours.
However, given that Arekere Mico Layout is now directly connected to Puttenahalli Main Road, through L&T South City Road and Nataraja Layout Road, and as Elita Promenade will get fully occupied in the near future, traffic is likely to get heavier.
A signal is worth the investment, they concluded, but informed me that further inspections would be made by the final deciding authorities. They also observed the need for other steps, such as relocation of the bus stops, to ease congestion.
Subsequently, in early July, Inspector M D Hari who took over from Inspector Dharnesh, took the matter forward by carrying out his own inspection. He observed that a four road converging junction, three with medians and one without, with the kind of volume it handles during peak hours, definitely needed a signal. He promptly took up the issue with his higher officers. Barely a month from making the request, Inspector Hari informed us that the signal has been approved and that work will commence soon.
Kudos to the Traffic Police for their swift action.

Puttenahalli Post

Follow us on Citizen Matters, Puttenahalli Post

Saturday, July 9, 2011

De-weeding by volunteers

A few volunteers from South City and Brigade Millennium were at the lake this morning... to work!

Here are a couple of photographs:

See the youngest two volunteers (they did have a lot of fun!) Don't miss the little piles of weeds that were removed in a span of less than an hour.

The pumpkin climber growing on the fence and one pumpkin fruit - not something you get to see often in your neighbourhood! It is a fairly good size and likely to be plucked soon.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

80G Exemption for PNLIT

We are delighted to tell you that PNLIT has been given Income Tax exemption under section 80G with a recognition certificate number of DIT(E)BLR/ 80G/ 63/ AABTP7792D/ ITO(E)-2/ Vol 2011 - 2012 dated 21/06/2011

As you are aware, the BBMP has handed over the maintenance of Puttenahalli Lake to us; the first ever citizens' group in Bangalore to be given such a responsibility. Our annual maintenance amount is estimated to be between Rs 5 lakhs to Rs. 6 lakhs. So far we have been able to manage with donations from individual well wishers but it has been a touch and go situation. We need to pay salaries to the gardener, the sweeper and the newly appointed security guard. In addition to individual donations, we are looking for corporate sponsors who have a budget for CSR. Please pass on any leads you may have so that we can pursue them. As per the MOU we have signed with BBMP, we are allowed to display the names of donors prominently at the lake.

With the demolition of the back wall of South City, unfortunate though it is, Puttenahalli lake is only a few steps away from South City. Many of you are hopefully going for a walk at the lake now and you can see for yourself how much work we and the BBMP have done to revive the lake. A lot more needs to be done. We need your help for this. Please donate generously and get tax exemption on your donation.

Many thanks.
Chairperson, PNLIT

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Puttenahalli Government School Prize Distribution June 2011

11th Jun is PNLIT Founder's Day and what better way to celebrate it in 2011, than at the local Puttenahalli Government School, JP Nagar 7th Phase. The school, with Mr Chenna Basappa as Head Master, has 850-odd students in Std 1 to Std 10. The first batch of about 90 students is due to appear for the SSLC exam in April 2012. In addition, there is an Anganwadi that the younger children attend.

PNLIT, along with the staff of Puttenahalli Government School, organised a function to honour the children for academic achievement during 2010-11. Three children from each standard (Std 1 to Std 9 of 2010-11), received a 'goody bag' and a certificate from PNLIT, with the class toppers getting school bags, among other things. Other prizes included notebooks of different kinds, pens, pencils, erasers, sharpeners, pencil boxes, exam boards, lunch boxes, water bottles, games, books and other items. The best all-round performer received a wrist watch.

All the prizes (worth approximately Rs 35,000/-) were donated and sorted by residents of L&T South City and Brigade Millennium. Our appeal for contributions was so immense that we had enough to give each of the 850-odd children something noteworthy - at least a notebook, pencil and eraser. Some of the contributions are being given to the school for classroom interaction/ infrastructure and library use.

On behalf of Puttenahalli Government School and PNLIT, sincere thanks to all the donors for their generous contributions.

The smiles on the faces of the children said it all... THANK YOU for making it a memorable day!

See the pictures here.

Purple Heron at Puttenahalli Lake

Bird lovers will be interested to note that a large Purple Heron has been spotted at our lake. It most often can be seen sitting on the island.

Pic: Arathi Manay

Friday, May 27, 2011

An update, an appeal

Jan 2009

May 2011

We are happy to tell you that our Puttenahalli Neighbourhood Lake Improvement Trust (PNLIT) has signed an MOU with the BBMP to maintain Puttenahalli Lake (Ref. MOU No: CC/EC/(Lakes)/MOU/01/2011-12 Dt. 17.05.2011). This gives official status to what PNLIT has been doing ever since the BBMP began rejuvenating the lake from Feb. 2010.

In order to build on BBMP's work, we had done a donation drive last year. Donations from well wishers like you helped us plant 300 trees, shrubs, hire a gardener and a sweeper. We greatly appreciate your support to a citizens' movement which began in a very small way to save the lake over three years ago (see photographs) to now reach this point of formal recognition of our effort. You may also be interested to know that ours is the first lake in Bangalore to be officially managed by a residents' group. Ours being a people's initiative, the challenge is even more formidable but not impossible.

With the greater responsibility our need for funds is greater and we are starting another donation drive this year. Your contribution will go towards cleaning the lake and its surroundings, planting more saplings, maintaining the garden, securing the lake, feeding inlets to drain water into the lake, upkeep of the toilets or providing drinking water, etc. For your information, we have received the status of Charitable Trust from the IT Dept and expect to get 80G exemption very soon.

Donations may be made in cash, cheque or by direct remittance.

  • Cash may be given to our representatives at L&T South City or Brigade Millennium
  • Cheques in favour of Puttenahalli Neighbourhood Lake Improvement Trust may be sent to our registered office: B3, 502, South City, Arekere Mico Layout, Off Bannerghatta Road, Bangalore 560 076
  • For Direct remittance, please see here.

Please become a Puttenahalli Lake champion!

With best wishes,

Chairperson, PNLIT

Sunday, April 3, 2011

PNLIT cloth bags with logo

Here are the new Kora bags that are currently available in AV Provision Store and Fresh Greens Vegetable Store on Puttenahalli Road. They are priced at Rs 20/- (with short handle) and Rs 30/- (with long handle). They are also available with PNLIT trustees.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Collection drive of re-usable items ended

Dear Residents of BM and JP Nagar,

PNLIT thanks you for the donations in kind that you all have so generously made. Special thanks to the BM Mayflower MC for the collection point and to Ms Mercy Kariappa (AG14) and Nupur Jain (A916) for all the help in sorting.

PNLIT has started delivering the items to those who have a use for them.

The following are the beneficiaries till now:

1. Abalashram
Dr D.V.G. Road, Basavanagudi, Bangalore 560004
- orphanage for girls aged about 15-30 years

2. Child Fund Association
SunBeam, 8th Cross Puttenahalli, Bangalore 560078
- orphanage/home for girls aged about 4-18 years

3. Puttenahalli Anganwadi
- children aged about 2-5 years

4. Omashram Old Age Home
#850, 5th A Cross, 11th Main, Vijaya Bank Colony, Bilekahalli, Bannerghatta Road, Bangalore- 560 076
- old age home

5. Little Sisters of the Poor Home for the Aged
Hosur Road, Bangalore 560025
- old age home

6. Vatsalya Chartiable Trust
717, 5th Cross, Kalyan Nagar, HRBR 1st Block, Bangalore 560 043
- orphanage for children aged 0 onwards, destitute women also

7. Samiksha Foundation
Koramangala, Bangalore
- Creative Learning Initiative for children with cancer and their caregivers, aged 1-15

8. Miscellaneous workers and their children (e.g. at construction sites, on the road, etc.)

Some more deliveries will be made in the coming days. All these organisations/ people and hundreds of others too are continually in need of different things, so please do get in touch with them should you wish to help.

Please do not leave anything more at the Mayflower reception.

Thanks again,
Arathi Manay
Managing Trustee (PNLIT)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

PNLIT cloth shopping bags in the market

With the ban of thin plastic bags coming into force from today, PNLIT cloth shopping bags are in the market. It is said that one reusable bag eliminates an average of a 1000 plastic bags.

When the ban was first announced a few weeks ago, some of the shops on Puttenahalli Road had approached PNLIT members for the supply of cloth bags that can be sold in their shops. About a year ago, we had tried to get these same shops to encourage cloth bags and give discounts to customers who bring their own bags, with limited success. At that time we had collected a list of suppliers of cloth bags, but we saw this as a good opportunity for PNLIT to create jobs in our vicinity. The idea was to get those who cannot work out of home or those who need extra income to make these bags that can be sold. Also, we decided to avoid synthetic cloth and to use cotton/jute as far as possible (unless we get free cloth from which bags can be made).

Over the last couple of weeks, we shared some bag design options with a few ladies from Puttenahalli. Most of them have their own sewing machines and they made some sample pieces. There are some who do not have machines who want to do this and we are trying to get them donated machines. The bags are made from new cloth, are sturdy with good quality stitching, can be washed and are environmentally friendly.

So we currently have ladies from Puttenahalli, who are happy to be able to work from home and who have started earning income of their own.

As of now Fresh Greens fruit and vegetable shop on Puttenahalli Road has started selling the cloth bags supplied by PNLIT @ Rs 40/-. We have also put posters which are displayed in Fresh Greens shop, informing people about the ban on thin plastic bags and encouraging people to use cloth bags.

We are looking out to spread this cloth bag effort to more outlets and are also exploring more economical cloth procurement options so that cloth bags can be made available at the lowest rate.

We look forward to the support of all JP Nagarites, in helping make our area free of plastic bag litter.