Army closes road connecting Shivalayam
Hyderabad: Five days after defence minister Manohar Parrikar promised in the city that no more Defence roads would be closed for civilians unless they were on A1 Defence land, the Army has shut down the Shivalayam temple road. The Army set up barricades and deployed Jawans who refused entry to civilians on Tuesday morning. The road connects Trimulgherry, and there are no sensitive Defence establishments on this route.
The Shivalayam temple falls on the way from Safilguda to AOC swimming pool and the road adjacent to it connects to All Saints Road via Gough Road. It is an important road for commuters travelling from Trimulgherry, Alwal to Safilguda and vice versa. Mr Guppudu Swamy, a resident of Malkajgiri, said, “On Tuesday 8.30 am, along with 40 commuters, we were denied entry by the Jawans. When I asked them whether the road had been closed temporarily or permanently, they said orders had been passed by higher officials not to allow civilians. This road has been open for years and today they block it without any notice or information boards. The Jawans there were only allowing defence vehicles, they didn’t even allow us to take pictures.”
“People are worried if the closure is permanent or temporary. The RWA will meet GOC, Major General Pachori, and the deputy general officer in command — TS and Andhra Sub Area, and request them not to close these roads,” said Mr B.T. Srinivas, general secretary of Federation of RWA Malkajgiri. No Army official was available for a comment.
On June 17, a high level meeting took place at AOC HQ between the defence ministry and state government officials on closure of AOC roads. MA&UD minister K.T. Rama Rao had said that the public had been using these roads for decades and the Army should consider keeping the roads open. The defence minister had said that the roads were being closed due to security concerns of the Army and a final meeting would be held on the issue in July where a solution would be thrashed out that would benefit all, by keeping one or two roads open for public use and making alternative roads.