Chennai Tricolor Initiative Releases Mobile App to Find One's Ward No. and Connect With Local Initiatives

CHENNAI, March 7, 2018 /PRNewswire/ --

Partners with ThoughtWorks to enable citizens to participate in their own governing 

Chennai has a population of close to 90,00,000 (90 Lakhs) and is expected to reach the 1 Crore mark very soon. Just for some perspective, let's look at a few other numbers - London and even New York, perhaps have a population of about 8 million (80 Lakhs), each.

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It is fair to state that Chennai is a little away from being a world-class city. The city is divided into 200 wards. Each of these wards have a population of 10,000 to 30,000 (the most highly populated areas) which is about the population of a village, and makes it easier to govern.

The wards all have varying degrees of infrastructural issues, and the city has quite some way to go in terms of extending basic services and amenities. Many of the citizens who want to get involved with civic issues tend to think of entire-city-level initiatives, and are overwhelmed by the complexity of the task.

As most residents spend a major chunk of time within their own localities, they are probably capable of having the most impact, there. This could be in the form of anything, from organizing street improvement to implementing waste management programs to designing community-level events that ensures a vibrant and inclusive community.

When Chennai Tricolor had conducted a small survey of 100 respondents, asking them if they knew which ward they lived in - their answer was that they didn't know. Out of the 100 respondents, only 30 responded (with sometimes accurate and inaccurate answers). The group realised that, 70% of the citizens in this city with a crore of people are not even aware of the ward they live in. And interestingly, it is in the ward level that basic amenities and services are delivered.

This got the Chennai Tricolor team thinking about how to enhance awareness amongst the people about their ward and what that entailed. The answer came in the form of a simple mobile application that when fired up, takes the location into account to tell one the ward they live in. The mobile application also provides information about the zone a citizen is a part of (Chennai has 15 such zones), alongside the contact details of the ward and zonal offices, which includes email addresses, physical addresses and contact numbers, wherever available.

ThoughtWorks is a software company and a community of passionate, purpose-led individuals who look to disrupt business and engagement models, leveraging cutting- edge technology, all the while seeking to revolutionize the IT industry and create positive social change. Their Chennai office worked with the Chennai Tricolor team on this initiative.

"When we put down the idea of this application and approached them, they immediately understood the value of building tools to enable a community and pitched in," says Vijay Anand, Chairman, Chennai Tricolor Initiative.

Given the launch of the app, Sudhir Tiwari, Managing Director at ThoughtWorks India says, "It gives us great pride to partner with the Chennai Tricolor Initiative Trust on their mission of transforming the way citizens participate in their own governing. This app will ensure powerful information and the ensuing action is in the hands of a community's residents and stakeholders. The app empowers them to come together and solve issues, where the results are not only positive, but long-lasting as well."  

There is also an element where once the citizens know which ward they belong to, they can join WhatsApp groups that the Chennai Tricolor team have created for each of the wards.

"We wanted to solve the problem of one - which is to say that often as citizens, we find some issues or inconveniences and can even think of a solution for it, but we often neglect it because we think perhaps its only we who are facing it. By connecting the local community together, if there are more people who feel the same way they can come together and either as citizens address the issue or involve the relevant government authorities to provide a solution.

It is a tall order to expect a lean government organization alone to deliver everything we need to make Chennai a world-class city. Democracy also has a 'by the people' part to it, and we want to see if citizens can be part of the solution - and to be active stakeholders in the governance process. This is one of the ways - albeit little - to facilitate that," added Vijay.

How to Download App (Android)  

Visit Google Play Store and Search for 'What Your Ward'

About ThoughtWorks

We are a software company and community of passionate purpose-led individuals. We think disruptively to deliver technology to address our clients' toughest challenges all while seeking to revolutionize the IT industry and create positive social change.

Michelle Surendran

Smitha Hemmigae

Agency Contact:
Kavya Gumaste
Senior Associate
Genesis Burson-Marsteller


SOURCE ThoughtWorks


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