IIM graduate forms political party to turn Bangalore into model city
Srikanth Narasimhan, founder and general secretary of the Narvirmana Party of Bengaluru (BNP), is an alumnus of India’s most prestigious schools. An Engineering graduate from BITS Pilani and an MBA from IIM-Bangalore, Srikanth worked in the corporate field for over 20 years before becoming actively involved in the social and civic space of Bengaluru. He is also president of the Bengaluru Apartments Federation (BAF), and it is this stint that has earned him inroads with politicians and administrative officials in the district.
“The BNP is the first city-only party in the world to address neglected civic issues while staying away from mainstream political issues of state or center,” Srikanth said. The Logical Indian. The founder explicitly mentioned that the Party does not aspire to enter mainstream politics at the state and national level. However, the Party would focus entirely on the daily problems of thousands of Bengalurians. While further outlining the type of issues the Party would work on, Srikanth said, “We would focus on things that impact ordinary people in the city, for example, garbage lying on the road unattended, damaged roads and water supply problems among many others”.
While emphasizing the scope of the Party, Srikanth said, “Currently there are 198 wards, but we will probably become 243 wards. Support has built organically over the past two years. gone and showed a willingness to challenge and help. We didn’t specifically put out a call for people to challenge. One fascinating thing that we do, which is different from many other parties, is that no high command decides for the Party. each neighborhood, we form a team, and the team decides who will participate. For example, if we do not get the support of any other team, I cannot contest the elections.
Vision of the party
Party members say that the BBMP receives ₹10,000 crore as an annual budget, but still the condition of the city is going from bad to worse. The anticipated reasons for the situation are the lack of civic participation of citizens in neighborhood elections, the absence of transparency in the budget and accounts, the absence of accountability for the work done or not, and efficient and responsible citizens who choose to stay out of politics and governance.
Even before winning the neighborhood elections, the Party has already taken action and is taking initiatives to help residents have a better experience. The Party launched BNP Jana Mitra, a campaign to help channel benefits from several government programs to the most vulnerable sections of society. As part of their BNP Nimma Arogya campaign, the Party volunteers aim to provide more than 20 lakh citizens of the city with preventive and primary health care facilities.
Asked about the Party’s vision, Srikanth said, “The Party’s vision is to make Bangalore a model city. The aim is to bring about sustainable, inclusive and balanced development of Bangalore, and its ideology is good grassroots governance. BNP, we aim to make a difference by fighting the system from within, rather than from without. We believe that local governance is first and foremost about execution, which has been sorely lacking due to various factors”.
He further shared that the BNP is committed to keeping the citizen of Bengaluru at the center and working to provide the basic amenities like pothole free roads, garbage free localities, sewer free storm sewers, functional street lamps, etc. “.
While talking about how the BNP is charting its course in the political sphere, Srikanth said, “Our minimum target is to contest 100 to 125 wards. Additionally, our minimum goal is to win in at least 25 districts, 10% of the total number of districts. Several people in our party have powerful campaigns. The numbers are going up.” Asked about the burden of victory, Srikanth said The logical Indian“The responsibility lies with the team as at this time we have not released the names of any of the applicants as this would be in line with booking and other formal procedures. At this time we are building a team for a particular Ward, which then works towards the main objective.”
Funding by local teams
When we asked about Party funding, Srikanth said The Logical Indian“The money is obviously going to be very important, but not as much as the other parties are demanding, because we’re not going to get people to vote for us. We would probably need a few lakhs to contest in each ward, and we We have already made a plan for this. We will do two things: first, we will spend money at the local neighborhood level for our campaigns, and this money will mainly come from the local teams only. At the central level, we want to raise a lot of money. money because we want to spend money on social media, billboards etc. Over the past year and a half, we have raised nearly ₹1 crore to run the day to day operations of the party.”
When asked if the BNP had crossed paths with mainstream political parties, Srikanth replied: “In some areas, of course. We have been labeled as the ‘B-Team of AAP’ in a few instances before and I I wondered if people would support him. However, one of the most pleasant surprises I have witnessed is that people are looking for change”.
While mentioning why their BNP connects to people, Srikanth said The logical Indian“All these parties, whether national, state or regional, they all fight on national issues and use boards of caste and religion for their purposes. People are fed up with all this. When the BNP came along , we were clear that grassroots development was ignored, and we focus only on Bengaluru and how civic issues affect the locals.”
The BNP has also launched a campaign called “LekkaBeku” to genuinely engage citizens and promote transparency in budget spending. He launched the Citizen Transparency Portal which provides comprehensive details on BBMP budget allocation and expenditure at ward level. It would be interesting to see what the eventual course of the Party would look like in the times to come. Nevertheless, the Party seems promising in its position and its objectives.
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