Edition 3- Winners
Majloom’s house was destroyed by floodwaters. A rickshaw puller from Bihar, he turned Citizen Journalist to battle corrupt officials. The government announced a relief scheme offering financial help to rebuild homes, to those living below the poverty line. Majloom applied under this scheme but instead of giving him his due, officials demanded bribes. He filed an RTI to get his allotted house without bribing corrupt officials and succeeded. He now lives in his new house.
|CJ Shiv Prakash Rai
Shiv Prakash Rai from Buxar is a farmer by profession. He turned Citizen Journalist to expose the misappropriation of funds meant for welfare schemes for poor farmers. He used the RTI to fight for his right. Shiv Prakash was threatened, even put behind bars under false charges. But he remained undeterred and his efforts led to an impact. Officials found responsible for the misappropriations were penalised.
Save Your City
|CJ Mahendra Agarwal
Mahendra Agarwal’s battle began with a personal loss. He lost his daughter to jaundice and suffers from ulcerative colitis caused by polluted water. For the past 20 years his mission has been to get the government to control the pollution of groundwater in Sonebhadra, UP. From filing RTIs to getting the groundwater tested, Mahendra has done whatever it takes. Thanks to his efforts the government has finally identified polluted water sources. Warning signs have been placed and the UP pollution control Board has taken action against several polluting factories. Most importantly, the area has been declared Critically Polluted and there is a ban on expansion or setting up of any new factories in the area till January 2011.
|CJ SK Maheshwari
Keeping the Commonwealth Games in mind the PWD made a busy road near Anand Vihar ISBT signal free. SK Maheshwari became a Citizen Journalist to voice the plight of lakhs of pedestrians who put their lives at stake, just to cross this busy road every day. Not a single foot over bridge exists on this 5 and a half-kilometer stretch, where heavy traffic zips past at high speeds at all times. SK Maheshwari filed RTIs and found out that in the past 7 months there were at least seven accidents in a stretch of just 5 meters on this road. While 9 foot over bridges had been sanctioned 2 years ago none had been built. Even after repeated requests for interview with the PWD minister, the minister refused to come on air, however as an impact of the CJ’s efforts, immediate work on the foot over bridges has begun.
|CJ SN Singh
School Headmaster SN Singh brought to light the problems caused by illegal mining in Jamuria. The regular blasting of coalmines not only disrupted classes in his school but also damaged the school building. Overloaded bullock carts carting the coal from the mines take the same route that the students use to get to school. This has led to some fatal accidents too. S.N.Singh chose to go beyond his call of duty. He wrote many letters to officials, telling them about the problem, but didn’t get any results. He finally became a CITIZEN JOURNALIST and raised his voice against the powerful and dangerous coal mafia. After his story was aired, the West Bengal administration was quick to act. They arrested members of the illegal coalmine mafia and the Central Industrial Security force was compelled to seal the illegal mines.
Be The Change
|CJ Anita Bhargava
Anita Bhargava is the motivating force behind “Let’s Do it Delhi!” When Anita returned to India after a long stint in the US, she’d cringe at the dirt, feeling helpless about it. But that didn’t last long. Anita decided to Be the Change. “Lets Do It Estonia” inspired her. Citizens of Estonia took upon themselves to “clean-up” their country. She initiated this idea among friends and within weeks a group of nearly 200 professional friends was ready to do the same. The group has cleaned up the Bhikaji Cama Place, Delhi’s Rose Garden and many more places. Anita has actually managed to get Delhiites to get their hands dirty!
|CJ Neena Chaudhary
Neena Chaudhary is the mother of 10-year-old blind girl. Shivangi studies at Springdale’s school and like other children her age, she loves to read. Since books aren’t available in Braille, Neena types soft copies of all the books and shares them with the NAB, so that they can print the Braille versions. Many publishers like Cambridge refuse to share the softcopy of their resource books like dictionaries. She met the MoS, HRD with her appeal to ensure that the copyright act be amended so that publishers have to share softcopies of their publications to be converted into Braille books.
|CJ Vijay Laxmi Kaushik
Citizen Journalist Vijay Laxmi Kaushik lives in Palwal and travels daily to work in Delhi. Local trains are her lifelines. She has been fighting for 13 years to make sure that she and other women like her can travel safely and comfortably to work. Eve teasing, chain snatching and quarrelling over seats in crowded compartments used to be a routine affair. What’s worse is that complaints to the railway protection force would fall on deaf ears. Vijay Laxmi Kaushik decided to do something about these problems. She approached the authorities demanding reserved bogies for women. The railway authorities relented. But Vijay Laxmi Kaushik found even that wasn’t enough. So she went back to them, asking for a Ladies special. Once again the authorities couldn’t say no. In 2008 a ladies special local was started. Vijay Laxmi Kaushik then battled to get toilets on local trains that covered distances taking over two hours. Thanks to the efforts of Vijay Laxmi Kaushik thousands of women now feel safe and comfortable on their daily commute to work.
Fight for her Right
| CJ 14 Girls
14 courageous girls belonging to an economically deprived section of society, dared to speak out against the sexual harassment they had to undergo in Muradnagar village of UP. These girls filed a complaint against their Math teacher who used to sexually harass and molest them. Finally with the help of another teacher, they filed an FIR. The Math teacher was arrested. And they didn’t stop there. They turned Citizen Journalist to tell other girls to speak out against molestation and sexual harassment.
| CJ Aishwarya Sharma
CJ Aishwarya Sharma, a class III student in Lucknow filed an RTI for the removal of a garbage disposal site in front of her school. The letter was forwarded to the local Municipal Corporation. As a result, the dumping of garbage ceased. But Aishwariya didn’t stop there. The sight of a dumping ground right across the main gate of her school was distressing for her each time she passed by. She wrote to the CM asking for something to be done. Thanks to Aishwarya’s efforts a public library, with more than 100 books, came up in place of the garbage dump.
|CJ Kiran Kumari
CJ Kiran’s mission for the past 6 years has been to save trees and make the planet green. 20-year-old Kiran, lives in the Champaran district of Bihar. This area is known for its Sheesham trees. But 6 years back, pests infected the jungle and the trees started dying. The forest turned into barren land. Kiran decided to find out why the trees were dying. Once she found the malaise, she looked for the remedy. Kiran made a concoction with neem oil. She tried it on some trees and found that it worked. She then went village to village distributing it. Kiran’s efforts have transformed 600 acres of dry forest into a lush green belt.
|CJ Mitu Khurana
Citizen Journalist, Dr. Mitu Khurana, is a Delhi based pediatrician. She is the first woman to have filed a case under the PC-PNDT act against her husband and in laws. She also filed a case against a Delhi based hospital and the doctor who did an ultra sound on her to determine the sex of her twins fetuses. Mitu’s in-laws who wanted her to undergo an abortion tortured, her. She endured the abuse and harassment. She gave premature birth to twin girls. Her ordeal didn’t end there. Mitu’s attempts over 3 years to get her husband to accept the girls failed. Instead, she was thrown out of the house, so that her husband could marry again. Mitu is now trying to fight the case under the PCPNDT Act that clearly states that hospital and doctors should neither conduct sex determination tests nor disclose the sex of the fetuses. She turned CJ to create awareness about the Pre conception and Pre Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex selection¬) Act that bans sex determination tests in India.
|CJ Prakash M Nadar
Prakash M Nadar is a specially abled person. He faced many problems while travelling in the trains. He shot a video of passengers refusing to vacate seats reserved for the specially abled.
|CJ Ritu Mehra
CJ Ritu Mehra shares the picture of students of a government school, asking residents and passersby to give them water. The school has no drinking water, literally leaving the students and teachers high and dry.
|CJ L.V Srinivasan
CJ L.V Srinivasan shares pictures of the inconvenience caused due to the Bharat Bandh called by the opposition in July this year. The Bandh was called to protest rising prices. He titles the pictures ‘Bandh for whom? A pregnant daily wage earner and cobbler got no business due to this Bandh in turn no meals for their families.