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17 Feb 2020, Edition - 1679, Monday

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Coimbatore

Taking up the cause of the citizen

Umaima Shafiq

COIMBATORE: Barely one year old, a registered social welfare organisation – Consumer Awareness and Protection Association (CAPA) – has already taken up the cause of citizens on many civic issues in Coimbatore. The association came into being in early 2018 and has 14 members.

N R Ravishankar, president of the CAPA tells The Covai Post, “We handle all civic issues at national and state level. One of the prominent issues we have taken up recently is that of footboard travel in government and private buses. In May 2018, a month after our organisation was formed, we met the secretary of the State Transport Department and managing directors of all the government transport corporations asking them to ban footboard travel. We also asked them to install doors at both entry/exit points in all buses. Along with our petition we attached around 101 press clippings collected by me since 2014 listing the number of human casualties and accidents caused by footboard travel.”

As expected, they did not get any response from the Government. A determined CAPA team then sent the same petition and copies to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) this May.

Ravishankar said, “Within ten days the NHRC gave orders to the secretary of Transport department, Government of Tamil Nadu, Chennai to take action and install doors for the back and front entrances of all buses. Eight weeks have passed since that order was given. We have now decided to rake it up again and ask the RTI Department for details on what action they have taken and the specifics.

Recently, the CAPA also pointed out a defective electric transformer in Cheranmanagar that was near residences and a children’s park. He said, “The TNEB did not respond, but we petitioned repeatedly and highlighted it with media reports. Now they have repaired and replaced the transformer. So we plan to use that same method with the footboard issue.”

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