Just a mention of any area around a cantonment in a discussion, conjures up the images of clean areas, beautiful roads with footpaths and orchids and large green road and street sign boards, pollution free green areas, organized parking slots, recreational places, and better drainage management.
But, in terms of the Badamibagh cantonment, despite its name, is actually a challenge to find anything like garden-like. Once, during a ride from Pandrethan to Sonwarbagh, one of my colleagues from the Jalandher cantonment actually asked me in a surprised tone ,”You said that you resided in a cantonment area”. After passing through zillions of speed breakers, the typical misery is to follow a lane drive, because of the apparent absence of footpaths with people walking around with no whereabouts. One another irony is to find a location of any street because instead of large green locality board signals hanging around at the centre of the road, there are small look-a-like notice boards that are not even visible at most of the diversions.
The main road that trespasses through the cantonment despite being the national highway, but at some points like the Sonwar market, Indranagar, Pandrethan, no offense , it’s much narrower than the waist of any Bollywood actress. While conducting a little survey of my own for writing this article, I asked a number of people from different parts of the cantonment area about the roads being in shambolic conditions, majority of them said that security could be the reason but they also added that the authorities could had made more speed breakers or any other means, but leaving roads with pits and without macadamization wasn’t the only option. The memory and the stink of a large concrete garbage and trash house just opposite to the international hotel brand “Four Points” must have travelled through different parts of the world.
The Badamibagh cantonment area despite being the most peaceful and lush green area in the entire city, is made worse by the absence of better roads, footpaths, Parking slots, green life along the roads and the dusty air .
The cars parked in front of the G.B Pant hospital, the only child specialty hospital add to the traffic mess that occurs almost every day during the morning and evening peak hours. Since no bus latch and bay or service roads are constructed, the public busses stop at any location for passenger pickups and cover the narrow road making impossible for other forms of transport to run. Not only that, people with their children cross the road at any place and at any time near the hospital making accidents likely to happen. All this occurs because no zebra crossing is there, no traffic lights are installed and for the safety of the children and sick plus elderly, a small metallic crossing foot over bridge is absent.
Last but not the least, the horrifying condition that scares the life out of the children and even adults is the increasing number of dogs in the area. Even though the dog bite cases are very rare but it’s impossible for the pedestrians and the locals to walk around with such a large number of canines.
The hope is to find a positive approach from this note without any offense and do the needful on an urgent basis.
— The author is a resident of Shivpora , Srinagar. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org