Hyderabad: Following the closure of roads in the Secunderabad Cantonment area by the local military authorities, a resident of the area has filed a PIL in the Supreme Court claiming it is severely inconveniencing people living in the north-eastern parts of the city.

In the PIL, the resident alleged that the military authorities at Secunderabad are always looking for reasons and excuses to target civilians and harass them by closing public roads, a lifeline that connects north-eastern colonies with the city. The road has been used by the public for over 100 years and is not in the unit lines, the PIL said.

S. Anoop Kumar, a local resident, said, “The arbitrary closure of public roads is inconveniencing the public. Yet, the military authorities are adamant, indifferent, and insensitive to their suffering.”

According to Mr. Kumar, this is not the first time the military has closed the roads. “Sometimes it is for Independence Day or Republic Day arrangements. Sometimes it’s for no reason. Now, it is the fear of the pandemic,” he added.

The local people claim that they use only the main road and do not venture into the military establishments or unit lines which are at a safe distance from the main roads and are well guarded. They also claim that the pandemic has spread all over the city and all parts of the country yet it did not result in the closing down of the city or the country. The Army will lose respect and credibility due to such actions, they alleged.

On 16 August, Telangana minister for municipal administration and urban development K.T Rama Rao had written to Defence minister Rajnath Singh, requesting the removal of barricades from Secunderabad Cantonment roads. “The frequent road blockades by local military authorities in the Secundrabad Cantonment area, mostly without justifiable reasons, has become a cause of discomfort for the citizens residing in the north and north-eastern parts of Hyderabad,” KTR wrote.

Meanwhile, the Federation of North-Eastern Colonies of Secundrabad also sent a letter to the Defence minister following KTR’s letter. The federation claimed that the closure of the Rajendra Singh Ji road network – Rajendra Singh Ji Road, Burr Road, Holy Trinity Road, Richardson Road – and the Hislop-Amherst Road network – Hislop- Amherst Road, Protnee Road, Lake Line Ranges Road, Yapral Road, Byam Road, and Ammaguda Road – was proving to be the most problematic.

The federation further said these roads are crucial in connecting areas of Yapral, Kowkoor, Balaji Nagar, Sainikpuri, and beyond. It said people are being forced to undergo extreme hardship due to the closure of the roads.

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