Cities need to be brought to centre of the political order

Mayors project founder Benjamin Barber wants an umbrella of cities

pujab

Puja Bhattacharjee | December 15, 2015



Karachi and New Delhi are not in conflict, India and Pakistan are. The politics of the nation-states do not trickle down to the cities as they are inherently multi-cultural. The reach of the mayor is deeper than that of the head of states as the mayor is not shackled by security or the idea.

Dr Benjamin R Barber, founder of the Global Parliament of Mayors Project, said that with greater devolution of powers to the municipalities, cities can flourish as mayors do not adhere to political ideologies but are pragmatic when it comes to governing cities. He added that mayors all over world have a common purpose when it comes to tackling law and order, terrorism and climate change.

In today’s interdependent world, cooperation between cities assumes greater significance. “To strengthen the cooperation between mayors, they have to be brought under a single institution.”

He was speaking at the Fourteenth D T Lakdawala Lecture organized by the Institute of Social Sciences in New Delhi on Monday.

He said that democratic institutions all over the world are in trouble as an increasing number of people no longer believe in them. In this scenario, cities need to be brought to the centre of the political order.

Democracy is very important for citizen participation to make our cities better. “Democracy cannot be created top down. To create democracy the civil society has to be cultivated,” he said.

“The intervention of the West in Syria, Libya and Iraq has failed as we had tried to create democracy from outside. If you shoot a dictator, you do not create democracy. It creates anarchy, chaos and a new tyrant emerges,” he added.

He pointed out that nation states have fared poorly to address the concerns of people.  The politics of nation states has not created opportunities for everyone. “City was the beginning of our civic communities. It is time to go back to politics started -in cities, towns, villages and neighbourhoods,” he said.

He pointed out that Damascus and Baghdad had existed far before Syria and Iraq and said that cities are far more important than out nation states. “Cities can flourish and help each other flourish. There is no conflict between them.”

Comments

 

Other News

“Script is the real hero”

Basking in the success of the new web series, ‘Scam 1992: The Harshad  Mehta Story ’,on SonyLIV, the OTT platform from Sony stable where the lead actors are new faces, NP Singh, MD and CEO of Sony Pictures Networks, has said that the script is the new hero. He credited the s

India’s active cases below 10% of total cases for three days

India’s trend of steadily decreasing active cases continues unabated. The number of Active Cases has remained below 10% of the total cases for the last three days, suggesting only one in 10 cases is active Covid-19 patient. The active cases comprise merely 9.29% of the total positive c

Cabinet clears bonus for non-gazetted employees

The union cabinet chaired by prime minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday gave its approval to pay productivity linked bonus (PLB) for 2019-20 to 16.97 lakh non-gazetted employees of commercial establishments like Railways, Posts, Defence, EPFO, and ESIC, with a financial implication of Rs.2,791 crore.

Covid-19: Daily new cases fall below 50K

India has leaped across several significant milestones in its fight against Covid-19. The new confirmed cases in the 24 hours to Tuesday morning have fallen below 50,000 (46,790, to be precise) for the first time in nearly three months. The last time the number of new cases was close to this level was on J

Media taking advantage of a divided Bollywood: Shatrughan Sinha

Legendary film star and politician Shatrughan Sinha has said that friendship in Bollywood is limited to onscreen, and there is no unity and some news channels are taking advantage of this situation. “Groups within the industry or their supporters may sometimes come together for some c

‘2.40 lakh TB cases went unreported in India in 2019’

In India, only 2.40 million out of an estimated 2.64 million cases of tuberculosis were reported to the government, that is, 2,40,000 TB patients went unreported, in 2019, according to the WHO Global Tuberculosis Report 2020. The reporting of TB cases, however, has significantly increased ov

Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter