Times NIE News Makers’ Meet 2012-13.

On Friday 10th August, Times NIE News makers’ Meet was held at Cathedral High School. Over 350 students from 150 schools of Bangalore participated in this Meet. Every year NIE holds a mock press conference to give budding student journalists a chance to understand issues faced by our city. This year the chief guest was Mr Ravi Ralph, CEO of Lake Development Authority.

The program began with the editor of NIE student edition, giving us an introduction as to what news is and how it has changed in the past decades. Then he talked about newspapers and how they need to modernize in order to keep the reader interested. He told us to never stop thinking, reading and learning. He also told us that news tends to be a day or two old as we get to know what has happened in past hour through news channels and the Internet.

Then Ravi Ralph, CEO of the Lake Development Authority, gave us a brief on lakes in the Deccan  The lakes specially in the Deccan have a special topography .the lakes have a cascading effect and that each lake is basically a depression in the path of a water going to a river and that each depression leads to another.  The history of lakes, since 1537 when Bangalore was founded. Bangalore’s  main water source is it’s lakes. The excess water from the lakes was turned into channels (storm water drains). Our ancestors maintained our lakes and took great care of them. This ensured that Bangalore used to have more than enough water supply.

NIE newsmakers

Due to rapid growth and need for houses, construction is taking place around our lakes. This construction is stopping the water from reaching the lakes, therefore our lakes are drying up . We should use our water wisely and not  waste it. He talked about their plan of action and how they by 2014-2016 intend to revive their freshwater lake ecosystems. In the past 3-4 months they have taken care of 44 lakes and action is being taken. They still do not have a solid plan as to how they intend to revive and protect all the lakes. We must have the basic civic sense to protect our lakes and file reports about people who dump their house waste into lakes and pollute them. Participation is important and we as citizens must save our lakes!!

Then the mock press conference took place questions were asked and he talked about how we must go about reporting people who pollute the lakes. He also gave us more insight about the fact that the government is actually doing something about our lakes. He talked about how a part of certain lakes is kept apart for Ganesha immersions and how lakes are being cleared of extra silt collected at the bottom of some lakes. Unfortunately, we did not get a chance to ask questions as the time was getting over .

After Mr. Ravi Ralph left we were asked to fill a couple of forms and then they took a quiz to see how carefully and how often we read our newspaper. This was followed by a presentation on what makes a newspaper and each article and page in the times of India student edition. We were also taught as to how we should write articles for newspapers. Then they told us about the difference between a feature and an article. Overall they day had gone by smoothly and it was a great learning experience and it really encouraged me to read the newspaper more carefully.
Diya Sharma

Grade 8 B