Gates and ‘No thoroughfare’ boards discourage people from taking internal roads

When it comes to barricading, it’s not just the army authorities who are adept in it, even the colonies in Cantonment area seem to have taken a leaf out of the army’s books. Many colonies in the areas under Secunderabad Cantonment Board (SCB) have erected gates and declared roads as ‘No-Thoroughfare’ to ‘secure’ their properties, complained motorists.

“Colony roads are laid by the Cantonment Board and hence are public properties. How can some of these residential areas deny entry to the passersby?” P. Ramachandram, a resident of Kharkhana, questioned. With traffic volumes increasing on the main roads by day, taking the roads that pass through these colonies could be a viable alternative giving reprieve to the motorists, he observed.

Gated communities and apartment complexes can afford to barricade their enclaves as most of them are built in the dead-ends of a layout, but barricading an entire colony that has multiple entry and exit points should not be allowed, M. Jayachandra, a retired government employee, maintained.

“If security is the main concern, the residents should request the police to increase area patrols and take up other remedial measures rather than barricading the colonies,” the septuagenarian said, adding that a well-frequented road usually discourages thieves from striking houses.

The practice of barricading the colonies is not a new issue in the Cantonment Board. Colonies like Vysya Colony in Picket, BHEL and ICRISAT Colonies near Diamond Point, and P&T Colony in Kharkhana had their gates closed for general public a few years ago.

“These colonies opened their gates after we explained the colony members the problems faced by the motorists,” B.T. Srinivasan, secretary of United Federation of Resident Welfare Associations, said. But many colonies do close their roads frequently and the very practice, even if it is in a colony, should be prohibited, Mr. Jayachandra observed.

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