Dearth of skilled manpower we need to have awareness about BPO Tushar Patil CEO of BTP InfoServe

5:50 PM Posted by ukmad

Tushar Patil is a young dynamic CEO of BTP InfoServe Pvt. Ltd. He did hisBachelor of Engineering in Industrial and Production Engineering from Gogte Institute of Technology and his Master of Science in Industrial Engineering from Wichita State University, Wichita, Kansas, USA.


As CEO, Tushar Patil is responsible for the vision, strategy and leadership that drive BTPI. After completing masters from Kansas University, he worked in the US for 3 years at Alpha Soft Services. During this tenure, he gained access to various service segments in the US including healthcare, insurance and finance. His experience also helped him identify the non-core business segments there and plan to outsource the same to BTPI. He has the task at BTPI to help business segments concentrate on their core strengths and to bridge the link that correlates clients’ expectations v/s BTPI deliverables.

Way back in 2002 Tushar started BTP InfoServe Pvt. Ltd. (BTPI) in Belgaum, which specializes in American medical insurance claims processing. This field is listed as one of the fastest job creators in USA. BTP InfoServe Pvt. Ltd is the only company in entire North Karnataka & Goa that specializes in this area.
BTPI from Belgaum manages the payment flow of medical claims efficiently from insurance companies to various service providers.

With an Approx 0.4 million dollars in turnover and over 50 employees BTPI aims higher turnover in the current year. Today all the sectors are reeling under recession like Automobile, banking, Industries but healthcare is one such sector which has NO Recession.

Tushar Patil speaks out to Team AAB:

1. My first question why Belgaum for your BPO?

Tushar Patil --> Belgaum is ideally located between Bangalore and Mumbai and has perfect blend of rural and urban population. The quality of education is excellent. Plus the lower costs of land/infrastructure/living/manpower and also for the abundant talent available in and around Belgaum. The weather is pretty much like Bangalore and is logistically located with 2 airports (Hubli and Kolhapur) within 90 kms distance.

2. Could we have your outlook on the IT & BPO industry in Belgaum?

Tushar Patil --> As I said the abundant manpower available in and around Belgaum is a major advantage we have. There is many Medical Transcription company’s based in Belgaum and there is enough scope to accommodate other sectors related to BPO. Bigger cities has had enough IT and BPO growth. The cost of doing business in bigger cities is horrendous compared to the cost of the same BPO job which can be done from Belgaum or Hubli. With a little push from the Government we can get things moving at a much faster pace.

3. What kind of shifts do you see coming from the recession? If any.

Tushar Patil --> Well customers are definitely guarded about the pricing and the service providers are looking for an innovative modernization strategy to achieve lower running costs. Companies whose leaders look ahead for opportunities that will follow post recession will have a competitive advantage when it’s over.

4. Is it going to be too different from what we are seeing now in terms of kind of outsourcing deals?

Tushar Patil --> Customers will be looking for more range of solutions from the same vendor. Also there is delay in signing new deals so it’s more of a WAIT and WATCH situation.

5. Are we also going to see any changes in the kind of skills you will seek in potential employees?

Tushar Patil --> Not much when it comes to ITeS industry.

6. What kind of order pipeline do you have for the coming few months?

Tushar Patil --> We have 2-3 large clients in pipeline.

7. What is your competitive edge in the industry in which you operate?

Tushar Patil --> 6 plus years experience in US healthcare industry

· One of the early entrants in this sector

· It’s an untapped industry in India

· Highly trained manpower

8. How do you see the healthcare segment growing?

Tushar Patil --> The US healthcare is a 2.5 trillion dollar industry and is expected to grow rapidly over the next decade. The Obama government might just present an exciting growth opportunity for the Indian IT service providers. The US spends 16% (one of the highest in the world) of its GDP on Healthcare and still 40 million individuals are uninsured. So the government plan aims for universal coverage for every US citizen. There will be significant influx of “the newly insured” into the health system as well as tremendous pressure on insurers and healthcare providers to reduce the costs. So the ITeS industry has something exciting coming all the way.

9. But has the healthcare vertical been fully immune to the slowdown?

Tushar Patil --> As far as our business is concerned, yes. We have been signing clients every quarter. But off course the US has been reeling under recession and has never seen this kind of unemployment. This leads to less consumption of healthcare products and hence less volume.

10. Is it easy to start up a BPO in Belgaum? Your experiences

Tushar Patil --> When we started in 2003 it was nightmare for us. The biggest problem we faced was internet. All our work is online so we need to be connected to the internet 24 hours. The downtime was almost 40% can you imagine that. We used to run to the DOT office at least 10 times a day. We lost couple of clients just for this reason. But now it is much easier to start a BPO shop in Belgaum. We have choice of multiple ISP which was not there in 2003.

11. What are your thoughts on the human resource talent in and around Belgaum?

Tushar Patil --> Frankly speaking there is still a dearth of skilled manpower in this belt. Schools and colleges must create awareness regarding BPO as a career and must introduce in its syllabus. Right now I don’t see anything happening and also computers must be mandatory in all institutions. We still get graduates who are computer illiterates. There is enough potential in Belgaum but we need to do more in raising the bar higher.

12. Your future plans?

Tushar Patil --> Right now our primary focus will continue to be Healthcare because that is our forte. We want to ramp up our capacity to at least 300 people from the present 70 in the next 4-5 years.

13. Your thoughts on the ITBelgaum initiative?

Tushar Patil --> It’s an excellent vehicle for the local entrepreneurs to build a platform which can be used to strengthen the image of Belgaum and to get Belgaum on the Global IT map. There are lots of interesting things coming up through this group which will help the future budding entrepreneurs. All the members are whole heartedly working towards a common goal.

14. How do you foresee Belgaum’s future for the IT and BPO?

Tushar Patil --> Infrastructure wise we are still lacking basic facilities and also air connectivity is a BIG issue which most of the clients look for. If these things are taken care then we can definitely see a bright future for Belgaum. Hopefully the ITBELGAUM group can make some difference!!!!!

15. Your thoughts on this website and its usability?

Tushar Patil --> It’s an excellent databank to get news about Belgaum. Hats off to you who single handedly took this initiative and also promoted the ITBelgaum group through this site. I wish you all the best for all your future endeavors.

Rain hit Belgaum

1:26 PM Posted by ukmad

Since yesterday Belgaum is experiencing heavy to very heavy rains at regular intervals. Yesterday night there were heavy showers for over an hour. In the past 24 hours city received 7.8mm of rain where yesterday in the day up to 5.30pm rainfall recorded was 3.8mm.

The forecast by the met department suggests more rain in the days to come. Here is the next 5 day forecast:


ISSUED ON: 30-09-2009



------------------- ------------------- ------------------- ------------------- ------------------- ---


01/10 02/10 03/10 04/10 05/10

------------------- ------------------- ------------------- ------------------- ------------------- ---

Rainfall (mm) 43 71 156 22 14

Max Temperature ( deg C) 26 24 26 26 24

Min Temperature ( deg C) 22 21 21 22 21

Total cloud cover (octa) 8 8 8 8 8

Max Relative Humidity (%) 97 97 97 96 96

Min Relative Humidity (%) 93 97 95 96 82

Wind speed (kmph) 015 019 022 024 015

Wind direction (deg) 300 290 260 250 240

Club road in Fort

12:31 PM Posted by ukmad

Thanks to Aziz for these pictures.

fortclubroadstmaryschruchThis particular photo of the St.Mary’s church is again distinct, as all earlier images were taken from the side whereas this one is from the front.

All the old pics like these are treasures.

Politics behind No session in Belgaum

11:48 AM Posted by ukmad

There is a never austerity fever in India with each and every politician is trying to get to the limelight and some automatically get the lime light.

In Karnataka the Belgaum session was cancelled and it was said that it’s to save the exchequer the 50 to 75 crores that otherwise would have been saved if the session is held in Bangalore and also that it’s difficult to shift the government machinery. But reasons for this are different from this I guess.

The state Govt. had conducted two sessions earlier amidst stiff opposition from MES.

But this time the BJP leaders from Delhi have asked BSY not to hold the session in Belgaum until the assembly elections are over in Maharashtra as per the advice of the Maharashtra state unit. The main reason behind this, holding of the assembly session in Belgaum would cause to the BJP Shiv Sena alliance.

Belgaum Dasara celebrated

8:12 PM Posted by ukmad

The Belgaum Dasara also has some magnificent history behind it. It may not be grand as the Mysore Dasara but in its own style its different and one of its kind.bgmdasara-1

The Simollanghan (crossing the border) is done at the Vidya Niketan grounds near St.Xaviers school. People from all lifestyles from young to old gather there for a yearly fair where the leaves of Aapti tree are looted on the pretext of it symbolizing Gold.

The Patil does the Puja and then the various Palkhi’s of the Gods come there like the Venkatramna temple, Maruti Temple, Jotiba temple and the Aapte tree leaves are looted and then exchanged with each other as gold.

The Camp Dasara has a different look. K T Pujari and sons started this utsav in 1901. There are 5 Devi chariots that are taken out in a procession which also end at the same grounds above. Marriama Devi of K T Pujari & sons, Muthu Mariamma from Madras BHT area, Kunti devi from fish market, Mariama from old Telugu colony. These 5 are supposed to be sisters.

See Photo album

Story behind exchanging Aapti Tree leaves as “sone” (Gold)

Kautsa, the young son of Devdatt, a Brahmin, was living in the city of Paithan. After completing education from Rishi Varatantu, he insisted on his guru accepting Guru Dakshina (present).

However, Guru said, “Kautsa, to give ‘dakshina’ in return for learning wisdom is not proper Graduation of the disciple makes the guru happy, and this is the real Guru Dakshina."

Kautsa was not satisfied. He still felt it was his duty to give his guru something. Finally, the guru said, "Alright, if you insist on giving me dakshina, so give me 140 million gold coins, 10 million for each of the 14 sciences I have taught you."

Kautsa went to king Raghu. Raghuraja was an ancestor of Lord Rama, famous for his generosity. However, just at that time he had emptied all his coffers on the Brahmins, after performing the Vishvajit sacrifice. He asked Kautsa to give him three days' time. Raghuraja immediately left to get the gold coins from Indra. Indra summoned Kuber, the god of wealth. Indra told Kuber, "Make a rain of gold coins fall on the "Shanu" and "Aapati" trees round Raghuraja's city of Ayodhya."

The rain of gold coins began to fall. King Raghu gave all the coins to Kautsa, and Kautsa hastened to offer the coins to Varatantu Rishi. Guru had asked only 140 millions, so he gave the rest back to Kautsa. Kautsa was not interested in money. In those days honor was considered more valuable than wealth. He asked the king to take the remaining gold coins back but the king refused to take them back as kings do not take back the daan (gift).

Finally, Kautsa distributed the gold coins to the people of Ayodhya on the day of Ashwin shukla dashami. In remembrance of this event, the custom is kept of looting the leaves of the "Aapati" trees, and people present each other these leaves as "sone" (gold).

Simollanghan – crossing the border - War Season

In ancient times kings used the feast of Dasara to cross the frontier and fight against their neighboring kingdoms. This border crossing is known as "simollanghan". Thus, Dasara also marks the beginning of the war season.

Indo-Tibetan Border Police centre in Belgaum

4:38 PM Posted by ukmad

The Indo-Tibetan Border Police force is in the advance stage for procuring land in Belgaum.itbpcolors_medium

In August this year at the chief ministers’ conference on internal security in New Delhi, BSY had pressed for an ITBP centre in Belgaum.

The premier force guarding the Sino-Indian border -ITBP- is on a land buying spree to accommodate its personnel in the plains after they spend about three years in the grueling heights of the Himalayas.

Source: Zeenews

No assembly session this time in Belgaum

4:27 PM Posted by ukmad

This is bad news for Belgaumites. For the past couple of years, assembly session in Belgaum was a boon to the city (some parts) by which the roads were re built, street lightening repaired and also some other beautification works of the city had taken place.

This time CM, Yedurappa had had first sighted to hold the session in Belgaum but with revolt from the administration and the opposition he has finally called it off. The chief minister disclosed that the cabinet had decided to convene the session for fifteen days in Bangalore instead of Belgaum as a session in Belgaum could affect the academic calendar.

At the previous sessions held CM had promised that one session in the New Year would be held at Belgaum. This time it will be a miss. The Suvarna Vidhan Soudha is under construction and now the ground leveling work is in progress 24by7 and the new Soudha should be ready in another 18 months and only then we could have the session here in Belgaum.vidhansou

As it is written at the Vidhan soudha in Bangalore: “Government work is God’s work” we can expect the building to be ready in 2 years and till then also for a assembly session in town.

100 crore grant in fiasco

1:35 PM Posted by ukmad

100 crore grant in fiasco

The Belgaum Corporation had got a special Rs.100 crore grant for the development of the city. Other cities which had got similar grants have completed most of the projects under the grant where as in Belgaum not even a penny has been spent and only discussions are on.

People close to the corporation say that this delay is thanks to the TWO elected MLA’s of the city who are trying to take credit for the grant. The duo has not taken into confidence the locals and decided on the plan and also the work was given to a Andhra Pradesh company leaving the local contractors.

The corporation has to approve the various works in a special meet of the city corporation but the same has not been taken yet and the MLA duo has decided the proposals on their own.

The opposition group in the corporation has asked for a special meeting to discuss the 100 crore grants issue. It is also heard that CM BSY is unhappy with all this.

Pay fine for sitting in place reserved for ladies

8:10 PM Posted by ukmad

Traffic police of city suddenly realized that there is law which prohibits others from seating in the seats reserved for ladies and senior citizen in a city bus. Normally the front seats are reserved for ladies and senior citizens.

Cops entered the bus as it stopped
Cops entered the bus as it stopped

Till now this law was never enforced but today once of a sudden this law was

officer challaning
officer challaning

enforced and the people seating in those reserved seats were fined Rs.100 on the spot at Bogarves. Most of the fined were college students.

No doubt the police are doing a good job after a long time, but fining at once seems to be too harsh one student said. The best part is how many more days this drive will be enforced needs to be seen.

Heavenly journey to Tillari

10:17 AM Posted by ukmad

By Vijay Itagi

Belgaum is surrounded by nature’s beauty and one can find beautiful places to relax and one such place is Tillari.tillari

It’s a paradise; spot the beauty in the ghats and the water falls at Swapnavel point. There 3 waterfalls which will dampen your eyes with the beauty of heaven. Fog, the lush green trees and in this season the fresh scent of green grass is worth it. But as this area is not developed as a tourist destination be prepared for hardships. No sign boards or mile stones, no food and even for that matter petrol pumps so be prepared for all this before you leave. It is advisable to take food & water along.

Tillari is about 65 kms from Belgaum.

How to go there and what to see:

To see Tilari dam and waterfalls one has to take Belgaum-Ganeshpur-Belgaundi-Tilari Road. Since bridge after Rakaskop is under construction one has to take diversion from Yalebail and take alternate route to join Belgaum-Tilari route which connects to Tilari dam. It is very hard to tell exactly locations of waterfalls as there are no information boards or milestones. Sound of waterfall #1 can be heard from the road itself as it is very near. A small pass takes you there. From there waterfall #2 and 3 and Swapnavel point can be reached. [Points marked on images]tillarimap1

Entrance to Tilari dam without permission is prohibited, so one has to take permission from official personnel.

Entire red circled area is so picturesque that it looks extremely beautiful. If the view is covered with dense misty fog one can wait till it disperses.tillarimap2

Ghat section after Kadoli is awesome, but extremely dangerous because of deadly serpentine curves.

If you are planning to go there on bikes you must keep waterproof rain wears ready. As it can rain anytime even before you realize it’s raining you will be drenched.

Do not expect any shops, restaurants, petrol pumps. You may not find a single person throughout the route till you reach Tilari nagar.

To return to Belgaum it is advisable to take Tilari Nagar-Patane Phata road which connects to Amboli-Belgaum road.

So go and enjoy the heavenly paradise, many holidays ahead.

Movies as on 25-09-2009

10:15 AM Posted by ukmad

Theatre Movie Timings Big Cinemas Whats your Rasshi 3,6,9.30 Wanted 12.15,3.15,10pm Dil bole Hadippa 12.15,6.45 Ritz Srikrishna 12.30,3.30,5.30,7.30 Nirmal Raj 12.15pm,3.15,6.15,9.15 Huns Dhanush 12.15, 3.15,6.15,9.15 Arun 12.30,2,4,7 Roopali Prem Kahani 12.30,3.30,6.30,9.30 Balkrishna Dragon Ball evolution 12.30,3.30,6.30,9.30 Chitra 12,3,6,9 Swaroop Wanted 12 Dil bole hadippa 3,6,9 Hira Rajani 12.15,3.15,6.15,9.15 Prakash Whats ur Rashi 12.30,3.30,9 Nartaki Wanted 3,6,9 dil Bole Haddipa 12 Santosh Bhagyad Belavor 12.15pm,3.15pm,6.15pm,9.15pm Globe 12.15,1.45,3.45,6.45 Kindly check the excat timings with the theatres

Belgaums history in short

5:10 PM Posted by ukmad

By Bramhanand Chipre (AAB’s History Editor)

Belgaum is one of the oldest, strong, prominent and well cultured historical place, nestling high in the Western Ghats. The old town area with cotton and silk weavers stands gloriously besides the modern, bustling, tree-lined British Cantonment. Step out of the forts and you have a wide choice of temples and churches to visit. Belgaum has an enviable heritage and offers much to be discovered. It lies in the zone of cultural transition between Karnataka, Maharashtra and Goa with a known antiquity clearly traceable up to 2nd Century A.D. Due to its proximity with the states of Maharashtra and Goa, Belgaum has acquired the cultural flavor of these states and blended it with the local Kannada culture to create a rich heritage, which is unique in its manifestation. It is also known as Malenadu or Rain Country and the vegetation here is verdant green throughout the year. Well, centuries have passed and today it is an entirely different story. Belgaum has now become one of the important and considered districts in the state of Karnataka. Belgaum is now marching with a tag of fast growing, redeveloping district with a population of approximately over 5.5 lakhs.

The name Belgaum is originated from "Velugrama" or "Ikhsugrama". The earliest mention of this is made in the Nesari Plates of 805 AD. The archaeological inscriptions under A Sunder in the Vadgaon - Madhavapura area reveal a prosperous town of the Satavanhana times. Chalukyas and Rastrakutas administrated the territory. Later on Kadambas of Goa and Rattas ruled Belgaum. It was made the capital city under the Rattas. Afterwards Yadavas of Devagiri and Vijayanagar rulers governed the city.

In 1472 AD Bahamani's conquered Belgaum. The Adilshahis of Bijapur captured it in 1489.

Asad Khan a noble of Bijapur, ruled Belgaum from 1511 to 1540. His tomb is in the camp area.

Asad Khan Darga
Asad Khan Darga

In about 1550, Sherkhan a Bijapur coommander built the present town Shahapur, originally called shahpet. Shivaji, the Maratha ruler in 1673 invaded Belgaum.

The Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb defeated the kingdom of Bijapur and then he transferred Belgaum to the Nawab of Savanur. In 1756, Belgaum was conquered by the Marathas. It was under the Maratha until it was occupied by the British in March-April 1818. The British made it the headquarters of a Sarkar (District) with 15 paraganas (Talukas) in 1838. The British experienced the heat and chill of the 1875 Revolt in Belgaum also. A leader of the Revolt was sentenced to death at the Military Dairy. He was Nargund Baskar Rao alias Babasaheb. His ' Samadhi' is located at the Military Dairy. Foreigners have left behind their indelible impressions of Belgaum. Ralf Fitch (1583) calls the place “The first town between Bijapur and Goa ".
Geographer Ogliby (1680): remarks as one of the four eminent castles in Konkan.

Italian traveler (1695) calls it a populous city and a place of much trade with a large market.

Belgaum was one of the five military stations that were established in the Old Bombay Presidency. In 1878, it was made the headquarters of the Southern Division under the Bombay Presidency.

Gandhiji at congress Session in 1924
Gandhiji at congress Session in 1924

Belgaum hosted the 1924 annual Congress session which was presided over by Mahatma Gandhi as the president. It assumes greater importance as it was the one and only congress session held in Karnataka as well as presided by Mahatma Gandhi as the president.

Part of this was already published on this site earlier as well.

Asad Khan Darga Photo courtesy Aziz.

Milind Gunajis Belgaum connection will promote Belgaum tourism

11:51 AM Posted by ukmad

Versatile actor Milind Gunaji also has a passion for nature and exploring tourist locales and has authored six books in Marathi and one in English. He also has a Belgaum connection-

His father Gunaji hails from Tilakwadi in Belgaum while his mother is from Goa.

Milind is now interested in promoting tourist spots in Belgaum district. He used to travel to Mumbai from Goa via Belgaum and his father would take them to Tilakwadi. Milind is serving as an ambassador for forests and wildlife for the Maharashtra government and on the committee of Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation, and would like to promote tourism in Karnataka, he said.milindgunaji1

He is fascinated by the beaches of Uttara Kannada. As he is from Belgaum, he would like to do his bit for Belgaum. Some of his friends in Karnataka are helping him get in touch with the Karnataka government to enquire on the future course of action of taking Belgaum as a tourist destination.

Source: TOI

Uncertainty over assembly session in Belgaum

11:50 AM Posted by ukmad

The rumors that the government may not hold the Assembly session in Belgaum indicate that BSY administration’s apathy to developing the district and this part of the state, according to the Kannada Organisation’s Action Committee (KOAC).

Former CM Kumaraswamy and then his deputy Yeddyurappa had announced that the government would hold the legislative session in Belgaum every year for at least one week, but this does not seem to be happening. The Karnataka Rakshana Vedike (KRV) has gone one step further to almost dare the government not to hold the session in Belgaum. The opposition says the Govt. has not fulfilled its promises made in the earlier sessions held here.

BSY said that the construction of the Suvarna Vidhana Soudha is in progress and the city would also play host to the World Kannada Conference.

Source: Express Buzz

Provident Bangalore wins KPL

10:25 PM Posted by ukmad

Provident Bangalore won the first KPL trophy by beating Belgaum Panthers by 5 wickets.

Batting first Belgaum Panthers scored 122 for 7 in the 20 overs. Provident Bangalore scored 125 for 5 with 4 balls to spare.

One killed in road accident

4:26 PM Posted by ukmad

Narayan Patil (50) was killed on the spot when a KSRTC bus hit the two wheeler. Jayshri Patil(21) who was the pillion was injured. Both were residents of Bhawani nagar.

The accident occurred at 2pm opposite the State Bank of India main branch on Khanapur road. There was huge traffic jam due to this accident on Khanapur road and at the same time heavy down pour of showers surprised everybody.

The cause of the accident is still not known. The traffic police have registered a case.

Belgaum is second capital in crime

11:20 AM Posted by ukmad

Recently Belgaum city has seen some incidents of loot and robbery and also other crimes have put Belgaum into second position after Bangalore in the crime rate in the state, this was mentioned in a Bangalore daily.

Yesterday two houses in Ramtirth nagar were robbed for over 50 Lakhs. Last week Gold shop Shantaram Lengade was robbed for over 75 lakhs and yesterday this loot.

The robbers broke into the houses when the housemates were not in town. The burglars made away with 3,500 US dollars, 2,900 Saudi riyals, Rs 28,000, four necklace sets, 28 rings, five gold chains and two diamond-coated necklaces from the house belonging to Ujwal Joshua Aralikatti. The family left for Saudi Arabia on September 15.

The second house broken was of Namdev Badiger who had been out of city. His house is situated about 20 feet away from Aralikattis’s house. 41 kgs silver, 99 grams gold ornaments and Rs 40,000 cash kept in the cupboard was looted.

The police after reaching the spot tried their best but had no clues at all. The sniffer dogs could not go far. Seeing the recent reports of robbery in the city the Police has stepped up night patrol, the authorities said. But the common man is not satisfied with this and is quite terrified with the rising number of robberies and also the fact that the police have not been able to catch the miscreants.

The blog contacted Ujwal Joshua in Saudi Arabia and this the reply I got -

Thank you for your story. Hope this will aware other people of the thefts happening around and we strongly hope that the cops will be able to find the culprits.
Ujwal Joshua

Ujwal Joshua is a long time follower of this blog.

Belgaum Panthers in KPL finals

8:07 PM Posted by ukmad

In scintillating semi finals the Belgaum Panthers won by 15 runs against the Bangalore Brigadiers.

The finals will be played tomorrow i.e. 23 at 7.30 pm at Chinnaswamy stadium. The other finalist will be the winner of the second semi final between Provident Bangalore v Bijapur Bulls.

Belagavi Panthers socred 159/7 in 20 overs where as the Bangalore Brigadiers managed only 144/10 in 20 ovs.

Come on Belgaum Panthers You can win the KPL, ITS ours!

Id-ul-Fitr celebrated

11:03 AM Posted by ukmad

On the occasion of Id-ul-Fitr, which marks the end of holy month of Ramzan special prayers were held at the Idgah maidans and mosques on Monday.


Belgaum panthers take on the Bangalore Brigadiers in the semis

10:49 AM Posted by ukmad

After the loss of Mysore Maharjas the Belgaum team got its semi final birth. The panthers will play against the Bangalore Brigadiers at 3.30pm at Chinnaswamy stadium Bangalore.

Come on Belgaum Panthers Win this!!!

Gogte circle to get a facelift

4:13 PM Posted by ukmad

Gogte circle to get a facelift

The Cantonment board has decided to give a facelift to the Gogte Circle (near Railway station). Bank of India has agreed to pay Rs.3.5 lakhs for the same and hence the board approved the renovation of the circle.

An island will be made and other amenities will be provided.

Winter session in Belgaum

12:10 PM Posted by ukmad

A 20 day winter session of the state legislature will be held at Belgaum by December end, CM B S Yeduarppa said.

KPN Photo

Border issues and development projects will be discussed during the session.

Actually, BSY in Jan.2009, while laying foundation stone for Suvarna Vidhana Soudha in Halga Bastwad, had declared that the winter session would be held in new Suvarna Vindhan Soudha building, as and when completed. The Speaker makes any official announcement about the winter session in Belgaum, till then we all need to wait.

Source: Deccan Herald

Belgaum Panthers win by 8 wickets

1:30 PM Posted by ukmad

In their last match Belgaum Panthers won by 8 wickets. Still the panthers have managed to be in the top 4 teams which mean they would play the semi finals. (Not sure as the points table on the is not updated after this match.)

See videos on

Belgaum Panthers: 122/2 (15.1 Ovs)

Davangere Diamonds: 119/9 (17.0 Ovs)

AZIZ HAFIZ multi tasking sarkari babu

8:11 PM Posted by ukmad

younggunsAziz Hafiz hails from Belgaum and is the son of Dr. F.A. Hafiz, a renowned doctor of Belgaum. He completed his schooling from St.Pauls high school and his Pre University from RLS and he did his Civil engineering from Gogte Institute of Technology. At the time when he was doing his masters in management, he was selected as a Gazetted Probationer in the Government of Karnataka and his journey as a Sarkari Babu began. Currently he is the Deputy Director, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs, Government of Karnataka.aziz

Aziz is a Sarkari babu with a difference and since in college he was known for quizzing, debating, dramatics, organizing fests - the first youth festivals of the city were his doings! He loves sports, has a wide range of interests, virtually anything and everything!

He has authored a book “The Rising Sun Shall Set….” which is set in the Belgaum fort, and is a piece of poetry, with a philosophical outlook. His wife is very good painter and this also inspires him in his work.

He has worked in districts of Raichur, Bellary, Udupi, Bangalore Rural & in Bangalore City. He is also handling a project for the comprehensive computerization of the Public Distribution System as its Chief Informatics Officer (CIO). In addition, he was also Joint Director, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs & Additional Director, Procurement & Distribution. He is an authority on the Public Distribution System, Petroleum products, and Consumer affairs.

One of the tasks he is handling today may well change the way Government functions. He, as the CIO of a unique project, has collected the biometrics of over nearly 4.5 crore people which will be the basis of the unique identity for each person. In fact the UID (unique Identity card) that is being talked about is nothing but what he has done. His work is apparently being hijacked by more well known persons!!

What this will mean is - in future you can go to a kiosk and by giving your biometrics, get whatever document you want from the Government, avoiding all the touts, the delays, the transactions...... Imagine even if it happens 5 years from now, we would have taken tremendous strides towards a better government, where you would get what is meant for you, rather than someone else making merry. We may even have voting with biometrics you never know!

And a person from Belgaum would have been the reason for its success.

His job profile is a story in multi-tasking - while managing the entire Public distribution system ( the rationing system ) in Karnataka, covering 1.25 crore families, handling 2.25 lakh Metric tons of food grains & 50,000 kilolitres of kerosene oil every month, with an annual subsidy of over Rs.1500 crore and an annual turnover of over Rs 5000 crore; Managing logistics, warehousing, transportation, retailing – with a network of over 500 wholesale & 25,000 retail outlets; Launching of new products; piloting policy changes, crisis management; enforcement of laws, raids, legal processes; Managing the minimum support price operations for agricultural produce for farmers, monitoring the supply & distribution of petroleum products; maintenance of civil supplies; besides monitoring of market prices; Redressal of public grievances, consumer education & consumer guidance.

aziz1 Interviewing Aziz was an experience of a kind and after reading his answers this Sarkari Babu is not a normal one for sure. Here are some excerpts of the interview.

1. Why Sarkari Babu, you could have been in any private company and most probably by this time on a very good position and good booty.

Aziz ---> I had this penchant for the IAS in school, and even in my engineering days, everyone knew that I had my eyes set there. I am in a very enviable place, which is powerful to say the least & although I don’t have the booty, I am fairly content.

2. Who or what inspired you to join the KAS?

Aziz ---> The state services were an after-day thought, since I didn’t make it to the Civil services. The Civil services were a fascination from school days, when we had DCs coming as chief guests and everyone looking up to them with awe.... maybe that caught my attention at an early age.

3. Your father is a very well renowned doctor; didn’t he want you also to be one?

Aziz ---> 3 of my brothers are doctors and very dedicated at that. I would see them reading those huge books and getting up at odd hours whenever there was a patient who came in an emergency. I guess in school, I thought this wasn’t what I wanted to do. Fortunately, people at home let me have my say early in life.... so I chose what I wanted to do. My father is 88 and takes pride when he hears from people about how I've touched their lives.

4. You are handling a department which at this hour is the most important one as there is inflation and a scare of a drought. How important do you think this is and have you changed the way you work to tackle this situation?

Aziz ---> Today, the situation is such that I am the department! Unfortunately this took a toll on my health and I was quite unwell since about 4 months.... but I'm back to the old stress-filled days. These are difficult times and the task that’s even more difficult is to balance between scarcity and inflation. Let’s hope that our inherent resilience to combat difficult situations gets us through this.

5. As the CIO of the biometrics project, do you think this is the ultimate card for an Indian citizen?

Aziz ---> The UID is not going to be a card but a number.

What we are doing is not the UID, but a biometric based ration card, which will be used in future for different activities. First, we will have better targeting. Second, we will minimize, if not prevent, diversions, misuse & what not... of facilities that the Govt. wishes to give the people. Suppose there are allotments of sites, why should a person who has already got one or 2 get another? He will be identified and some other person who deserves it will get it.... isn’t that something to look forward to? If this happens it can become the ultimate card, maybe having a chip, and even used as a debit/ credit card.... who knows??? The possibilities are immense!

6. You have served in various capabilities and in various locations, your favorite location and why?

Aziz ---> Since I have wide interests, it has never been boring. Raichur was an eye opener, after living all my life in the comforts of home. Udupi was beautiful --- the beaches, the forests, Bangalore has been a growing experience where the proximity to the political class has been educative -- to say the least!!!! Hey but there's no place like home!!!

7. Some good and bad experiences you would like to share when at work.

Aziz ---> There are many ... I was conducting elections in Udupi when T N Seeshan was the CEC. In my constituency there was not a single banner, but when I came to B'lore the place was flooded with plastic. I felt that I had done what no one else had. Then, there was a school located where the sea water actually crashed against the plinth and the strong winds had blown away the roof tiles and broken the window panes...... the kids would sit in their class while the roof leaked and the gusts of sea water sprayed inside occasionally. This was supposed to be a polling booth. I ordered that it should be repaired; otherwise it would not be used in the elections. Everyone sneered that all the authorities come and make such promises, but this will never get repaired. I was adamant that it should be repaired immediately. Finally, it was set right and it gave me immense joy when I went back there again.

Bad experiences have been mostly when the press wrote something they partly understood or misunderstood. I have conducted some dramatic and daring raids and got many people arrested in different places. This is an unpleasant task where one invites their enmity all along.

8. What would you ask the young aspirers who want to join the administrative service?

Aziz ---> To the principled, Govt. service is not as easy as it appears. Getting in is also difficult. But if you have the inclination, choose your subjects carefully, study methodically and you'll make it. Aspire to get into the IAS.

9. You authored the book “The Rising Sun Shall Set….” What made you write it?

Aziz ---> I guess I have a penchant for writing. I wrote a lot in my college days - plays, poetry, et al. This had to follow. I'm now looking for a publisher for my next book- short stories.

10. What is the best thing about Belgaum you like?

Aziz ---> There is so much. Having lived in the Fort, the past is nostalgic, the weather is lovely. But, I guess the many friends I have and many I came across all make it so much of a drawing force. .... Now I wonder why my 7 year old son likes it. What did he like????

11. What are your thoughts on this website?

Aziz ---> It is informative, and in a way makes us feel it’s ours!!! It has made me addictive and I'm busy trying to look up on old friends and trying to make a comment wherever I can...... & thanks for being a facilitator......

12. Your views on rate tape in the system?
Aziz ---> Red tapism has become synonymous with the bureaucracy. Why? Could be because many in the govt. want to bring in delays, create frustration and thereby create an easy way out, so as to get their “share”! It could also be due to flaws in the processes, and the "system" where decisions are passed on endlessly. Unfortunately, many officers don’t have the guts to take even minor decisions, and keep passing the files.

13. Vision for Belgaum?

Aziz ---> My vision for Belgaum: There's so much to do; in every way. First, citizen’s participation needs to be looked at differently. Ward committees, resident welfare groups need to be active. Make the corporators take up your cause, rather than theirs. Take roads, have a long term plan to concretize all the roads, keeping in mind drainage, water supply, cabling - so we don’t have road cutting later. Get rid of all overhead cables, especially since so many trees keep falling. Try and merge the Cantonment with the Corporation - the Cantonment act is a vestige of the British era and I don’t think it goes well with the concept of local self govt.
Tourism needs to be promoted in a big way - facilities need to be established and publicity also needs to be given.

I'd also love to see an astro-turf for hockey, since we have immense talent for the sport.

Campaign for a shorter rail link to Hubli & get a Shatabdi or Rajdhani to ply. Flights to Goa, in addition to Pune- Mumbai, B'lore.

I want to see so much done that’s why I keep adding comments whenever someone has a thought in print.