By: M.S.Yatnatti: Editor and Video Journalist Bengaluru: According to rules of Ward Committee published, all of you can start demanding that BBMP constitute the ward committees for each ward with a total of ten members with 3 women, 2 SC/ST members, 2 local associations and any three other members. Please make sure the Committees meet every month and put up the minutes and resolutions in the ward office. The Ward Committee meetings are open to the public and RWA members should make it a point to attend them. You can only observe the meetings but cannot intervene. Your grievances can be submitted to the Councillor one week before the meeting. You can videograph the meetings. The Secretary of the Ward Committee has to provide an Action Taken Report next month on resolutions of previous meetings. This is the best opportunity to make your councillor and officials accountable to the community they are supposed to serve. Youcan make use of the opportunity.Part of code of conduct which is applicable to Government servants is also applicable to corportaors as they are public servants. But the BBMP commissioner appointed ward committee members in total disregard with code of conduct by appointing wives, husbands, nephews and nieces of corporators in few wards. In a few wards, the list the corporator had submitted was finalized by the BBMP . According to rules, corporators can recommend a few names, but the ultimate deciding power vests with the Palike," Reportedly Nepotism seems to have struck deep roots in the constitution of BBMP ward committees, whose primary aim is to feel the pulse of the city.It's no surprise that corporators, their family members and best buddies get a shoo-in, but it's egregious on the part of the BBMP to ignore the list of recommendations sent in by civil society activists well before the panels were set up. None of the 131 ward committees has a garment worker, domestic worker, street vendor or pourakarmika. Civil society activists, too, met the same fate. There's very little that the BBMP can do than dissolve and recast the ward committees to bring in a mix of expertise and grassroots workers.The city, as always, comes first.According to reports 25 years after the 74th Constitutional Amendment (Nagarapalika Act) prescribed effective citizen participation through ward committees, to bring in accountability of the local councillor to the community, an opportunity is at last being given to citizens to get into ward committees. Till now, if at all the ward committees were constituted; councillors were themselves nominating the individual members and registered associations who would sit on ward committees. It was not surprising that the ward committees used to be filled with the councillors' own party-men and cronies, defeating the purpose of the ward committees. The two seats for registered associations used to be filled by them with organisations which had no history of involvement in civic issues, such as Wrestlers' Associations, Ganesha Festival Committees, temple trusts, etc. Reportedly activists are now contemplating approaching court to find out what selection criteria was adhered to in constituting ward committees. Citizens for Bengaluru, a citizens' group, demanded that the "131 arbitrarily constituted" ward committees be nullified and chosen again, with active citizens getting inducted into committees in a democratic way . It is not only Bengaluru's poor who were kept out of ward committees. Civil society activists working for a better Bengaluru too were out of the reckoning. "Out of the 500 who applied, 100 were anti-corruption activists, 35 civic leaders who had undergone proper training from B.Pac and 185 were put up by Citizens of Bengaluru. How is it that out of all these people, the BBMP did not find a single person worthy of being included?" said Narendra Kumar of Lanchamukta Karnataka Nirmana Vedike (LMKNV).