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Hyderabad parks unsafe?

Hyderabad parks unsafe?
Highlights

The news of an assailant attempting to kidnap Nityananda Reddy, vice-chairman of Aurobindo Pharma, at KBR Park on Wednesday, sent a chill down the spines of not only the walkers but also the people of the city. One can’t help but think---Are our parks safe enough? What are the security arrangements?

The news of an assailant attempting to kidnap Nityananda Reddy, vice-chairman of Aurobindo Pharma, at KBR Park on Wednesday, sent a chill down the spines of not only the walkers but also the people of the city. One can’t help but think---Are our parks safe enough? What are the security arrangements?

KBR Park

KBR Park is popularly known as walking paradise for the people living in Jubilee Hills and Banjara Hills. One can spot many VIPs taking a stroll in the park either in morning or evening. Owing to the presence of film personalities, politicians and businessmen, there is an outpost and teams who patrol from 5 to 9 in the morning and 4 to 7 in the evening. There are eight gates but only 4 CCTV cameras are up manning the main entrance gate.

Many walkers do complain of regular thefts of gadgets that are left in their vehicles at parking spots. Few even said that the police outpost has been not functioning for quite a while.

“Security should be beefed up and through frisking should be done in the entry point to prevent unauthorised and undesirable person’s entry into the park. Unless these measures are taken and implemented immediately, the fear of the walker will continue and they like to confine in their homes,” opined K Venkateswara Rao, former MLA.

KBR Park walkers miffed with price hike

The kidnap attempt has overshadowed the bone of contention at KBR Park, the price hike. The government has hiked the monthly fee from Rs 200 to Rs 400 and the entry fee for children has been increased from Rs 5 to Rs 10. The yearly package for entry fee has been increased from Rs 800 to Rs 1,000 for adults and Rs 500 to Rs 1,000 for senior citizens and these charges are applicable till July 2015.

Miffed at the price hike, Ramachandra Reddy, president of the KBR Park Walkers Association, said that the association objected the hike and demanded a rollback. “What is the point in increasing the fee, when there is no security? About 5,000 walkers visit the park daily. Their lives and safety can’t be at stake,” he added.

Sanjeevaiah Park

Bizzare is the word one has to use to term the entrance of the Sanjeevaiah Park. The entrance is at the opposite end and one has to go through a tunnel to reach the park. An aged guard in the tunnel checks for passes and tickets. The security is minimal to scant, which made it infamous as ‘nesting ground’ for couples, who are seen even in the early hours. The vast park, of late, has seen a decline in the number of visitors owing to the Hussain Sagar dredging works and the foul smell emanating from the dredged waste.

Indira Park

The park, which has seen the highs and lows over a period of time, has now close to 2,000 walkers from areas such as Musheerabad, Jawaharnagar, Ashok Nagar, Gagan Mahal, Domalguda and Vidyanagar who visit the park in the morning and evening every day. In the morning, two guards man the main gate and one at the side entrance. These guards aren’t armed; they never frisk anyone. With the recent additions, the park off late has seen a spurt in the number of walkers. It’s high time the security should be revamped.

Public Gardens

While most parks in the city suffer from the lack of security, walkers in Public Gardens on the other hand suffer from over security. Taking a morning walk at the Public Gardens has turned out to be a nightmarish experience for people, with overzealous cops restricting their movement from as early as 7 am. Adding to their woes is the mushrooming construction that is turning the place into an office complex.

"There are close to 3,000 walkers who are members of our association. Each time there is a meeting in the assembly, a siren is sounded and we are asked to vacate the premises," said Ghulam Yazdani, chairman of the association. He also points out that the officials cite that they have imposed section 144 within a 500 metre radius of the Assembly building. But it has been noticed that people near Ravindra Bharathi and other areas are left unperturbed.

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