Archive for May, 2009

Let there be light ?

Light. Physicists don’t know whether it is a particle or a wave and say it is neither, philosophers seem to enjoy the brightness, aura and radiance of it and we normal people  pay for it.

Under the label of development, Bengaluru mahanagara palike has taken some excellently stupid measures. Yes, I mean it. They are excellently stupid.

Bangaloreans have been cribbing that garden city is no more true to its name, so some of the corporators decided to convert playgrounds to parks so that diabetic patients can go round and round in the “diabetic tracks” and go home feeling giddy. What all didn’t they do to”develop” parks ? They brought Mexican grass and created landscapes, installed fountains which work only when Bangalore is hit with a cyclone or a depression and above all, they got lights fitted every 10 meters inside the parks.There starts the problem.

Lights cannot and must not  be fitted the way we  grasses are grown. It needs lots of calculation. Lighting design is a huge field by itself. These people have lighted parks like how they light up the roads for annamma’s festival orchestra !

I  come  from a family which has seen two generations of successful electrical contractors and lighting design consultants. That has naturally given me the credibility and sense ,quite a little bit, but  not enough knowledge (that is because I didn’t bother to know  more about these…I was worried about light and its production,not installation 🙂 ) to talk about lights.

Lighting up parks is a not a very tough thing to do, says my dad. Light should be just enough to light up the pathways and the benches..not the entire park ! Moreover, there is no need of light till the sun sets. And after the sun sets, insects, birds and other creatures naturally seek shelter in the parks. Insects are quite shy and a lot more sensitive, they do not come out when humans are around. Some corporators claim that the walkers should not be troubled by insects when they walk and hence such an arrangement is necessary. If so, have they got rid of, or CAN they get rid them ? Why talk about  insects and reptiles then ?

The next major reason for corporators to install lights in such huge numbers is increasing chain snatchers in cities. Unfortunately, by lighting up parks and the surrounding roads, they help the thieves to target their victims better. I am not condemning the step taken, but the lighting is more than just sufficient for a thief to snatch chains. The best way would have been to light up roads with just necessary lighting and ask cops to patrol .(too ideal an idea isn’t it…with the level of corruption 😀 )

Bangalore is getting hotter every summer and people throng parks in the evenings. They enter the park when sun has set and light soothing greenery of park becomes dark. With every road being filled with vehicles, fresh air at parks is a myth. These heavy lighting arrangement increases the strain on the eyes further, rather than decreasing it. There are loads of tube lights and CFLs  already at home, and park is also lit up so horribly well…where and when can the eyes relax ? People in cities have forgotten sound and satisfying sleep these days, thanks to recession and thefts.

The lighting is not serving the purpose as it  should and is only leading to a waste of power.So, should we let the light be ?