Janaagraha City Politics Survey Reveals First Time Voters Eager to VOTE

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Janaagraha City Politics Survey Reveals the first time voters are eager to vote in Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) Elections – Footpaths, Garbage, Traffic and Water are on top of the mind of Bengaluru voters.

Bengaluru: With BBMP elections most likely to be held in the coming months, Janaagraha Centre for Citizenship and Democracy conducted a City Politics Survey to gauge public perception on local governance, issues that affect the quality of life, their expectation from the upcoming BBMP elections, city budget and spend, city issues, citizens engagement with councillors as well as basic knowledge of citizens on city governance and political structures.

Using stratified random sampling methodology, 503 people from 27 wards belonging to eight zones of Bengaluru were asked 29 questions. The survey was conducted between December 16, 2021, and January 2, 2022, and included people of different ages and socio-economic groups. The Janaagraha’s City Politics Survey – Bengaluru 2022 was released at The Bangalore Press Club on Tuesday, June 21.

The survey showed that the first-time voters were eager to vote, as 86 per cent of Bengaluru’s first-time voters strongly expressed their intention to cast their vote in the upcoming BBMP election. Their main concern was tackling climate change, and 88% of first-time voters believe strong local governance and a strong BBMP are the keys to a better future for Bengaluru.

Speaking to the Bengaluru media, Srinivas Alavilli, Head of Civic Participation at Janaagraha, said, “Voters of Bengaluru are waiting for the BBMP elections. We tried to understand the degree of awareness citizens have about BBMP and particularly the first-time voters. The results showed that very few understand the role of BBMP, Ward Corporators, Ward Committees etc. but are keen to vote and want civic polls to be conducted on the basis of everyday issues that affect them.

To improve our city, the institution of local governence must be strengthened, beginning with participating in local elections. We appeal to the political parties to present a compelling vision for our city and seek votes. We humbly appeal to the media to give as much importance to BBMP elections as they do for state or national elections.”

Sapna Karim of Janaagraha said, “While a large percentage of citizens and voters of Bengaluru may not fully yet understand the nature of ward level governance, it is clear that their expectations from the BBMP and the new council that will be formed are to ensure there are walkable footpaths, clean neighbourhoods, an efficient commute, access to clean water, and there is a focus on mitigating the negative impact on climate and environment, among other civic issues”.

“It has been proven through the pandemic that decentralization of governance through Ward Committees, bringing government closer to the citizens, has only merits. This is evident from the significant number of Ward committee meetings taking place in the city. However, the BBMP has to build its capacity and resources to strengthen the platform of Ward Committees, deepen citizen engagement and through that fulfil citizens’ aspirations”

Manjunatha Hampapura L, Karnataka Lead for Civic Participation at Janaagraha, said that “BBMP elections are extremely important for the next five years. We hope our survey highlights the needs of citizens for political parties and candidates to take notice. Bengaluru is one of the best cities in the world, and by electing the right set of people, citizens can help make our city overcome the challenges.”

Here are the some of the key highlights of the survey:

– Only 17% of those surveyed knew the name of the last Mayor, while 97% knew the PM’s name and 83% knew the CM’s name.
– 88% have never met their Ward Councillor, 87 % are unaware of Ward Committee meetings, 95% have never attended a Ward Committee meeting, and 22% said that they had approached an MLA to resolve an issue. In comparison, only 12 per cent have met a Councillor.
– 94% Unaware of BBMP’s ₹60 lakhs/ward allocation for FY 2021-22.
– 87% of Bengaluru voters believe a strong Councillor would ensure better services and improvement in infrastructure for their wards.
– 82% of Bengaluru voters believe coordination between BBMP and civic agencies kike BESCOM, BWSSB, BMTC etc will contribute to better city governance.
– 23% cited pedestrian infrastructure as the most significant issue, followed by 20% cited Garbage collection, 16% traffic congestion and 15% on lack of availability of clean water.
– 89% of Bengaluru voters are concerned about environmental issues & climate change, yet only 25% of voters feel Councillors accord environmental issues noteworthy significance.

To access the online version of the report and press note both in Kannada and English – https://linktr.ee/Janaagraha

 For further details, please contact:

Mahalakshmi Manager, Communications
Ph – 9986016557
Email – mahalakshmi.b@janaagraha.org

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