Thiruvananthapuram: Pangode residents protest against restriction on construction

Thiruvananthapuram: Pangode residents protest against restriction on constructionTHIRUVANANTHAPURAM

: The collective of residents associations from Poojapura, Thirumala, PTP Nagar and Pangode wards, ‘Nanma Koottayma’, has been on a battle for the past one year.

They have been demanding an amendment to rules by the defense ministry, which would help residents get clearance for construction and maintenance of land and houses which are in close proximity to Pangode military camp.

After several attempts, the Nanma Koottayma is conducting dharna in front of AG’s office at 4.30pm on Friday.

A defense circular dated May 18, 2011 had put forth restrictions on any form of construction within 100 metres of a military establishment. A no-objection certificate (NOC) has to be secured from camp authorities before taking up any construction works in the prescribed limits.

As the circular caused widespread upheaval across the nation from large numbers of people who were affected by the issue, an amendment was introduced on October 21, 2016 which decreased the restrictions to a certain extent.

For around 149 military camps the prescribed distance was shortened to 50 metres and for another 193 stations it was shortened to 10 metres. Unfortunately, apart from Kannur, no other camps in Kerala including Pangode made it to the amended list which has put the residents in dire distress.

On 15 March, 2018, the collective forwarded the first representation to Shashi Tharoor MP demanding Pangode to be included in the amended list. The defense ministry in its response informed that such a relaxation will not be applicable for Pangode.

Tharoor will inaugurate the dharna on Friday.

General convener of Nanma Koottayma S Prasannakumar, said that they only wanted permission to build and maintain buildings on their own land. “Apart from Jammu and Kashmir, most of the military camps across the nation made it to the amended list apart from those in our state. Development and maintenance works have almost come to a standstill ever since the restrictions were imposed,” he said.

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