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SCB road ban stays

SCB road ban stays
Highlights

The ban on civilian traffic movement between 10pm and 7 am continues in the Secunderabad Cantonment area despite the Defence Ministry taking serious offence to it following representations from the locals residing in the vicinity.The Ministry ruling was plain and clear-No public road in a cantonment shall be closed by any authority other than the Cantonment Board for any reasons other than security and without following the procedure laid down under Section 258 of the Cantonment Act,

Each party buys time

The ban on civilian traffic movement between 10pm and 7 am continues in the Secunderabad Cantonment area despite the Defence Ministry taking serious offence to it following representations from the locals residing in the vicinity.The Ministry ruling was plain and clear-No public road in a cantonment shall be closed by any authority other than the Cantonment Board for any reasons other than security and without following the procedure laid down under Section 258 of the Cantonment Act, 2006 The GoC-in-C and the Principal Director of the defence estates were also informed that only they will have to ensure that no road can be closed arbitrarily.

Clarifying on the decision, Secunderabad Cantonment Board (SCB) CEO Sujatha Gupta said, “As per Cantonment Act, 2006, procedures have to be followed where any decision needs the approval of the board. We will hold a meeting soon to decide on further action to be taken regarding the closure of roads.”

Meanwhile, an SCB spokesperson said that the board had received orders from the Centre on the road restrictions on January 23 and that they were working on same. The board is awaiting the arrival of Major General Pithawalla, who is the General Officer Commanding, Southern Command.

BT Sreenivas, executive vice-president, United Federation of Resident Welfare Associations, said, “The Ministry of Defence had issued orders on January 7 to all the Chiefs of the Army, Navy and Air Force, with a copy to the respective CEOs. It said the road may be closed for civilians, subject to providing alternative roads in a reasonable period of time to enable commuters pass through without any inconvenience.”

Army personnel manning AOC gate (File photo)

“Though the road restrictions and closure is necessary, alternative roads must be provided in a reasonable period of time. Moreover, they should be in close proximity to the current roads,” he added. As things stands there may no respite from the blame-game as it may take a long time even to convene the proposed meeting.

Some locals opine that all these were initiatives only to buy time. The residents are, in the meanwhile, keeping their fingers crossed unsure of who can have the authoritative final call-the courts, the SCB, the government administrators or the Defence Ministry.

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