Say no to opening cantonment roads to public without security check. Honor the sacrifices.

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New Delhi, May 20 (UNI) Most of the closed roads in the Cantonments will be reopened immediately, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has decided.

The decision will save the civilians from traffic and long routes but lets not to forget incidents of militant attacks on family quarters in recent times in Jammu are examples of anti-national elements seeking to target army morale, by hitting at weak spots. The May 14, 2002 Kaluchak massacre where militants attacked the family accommodation and killed 23, including women and children still haunts the army. The latest in February this year in Sanjuwan also involved living accommodation. Attacks have also taken place in Nagrota and Pathankot. Hence, the Army would need to ensure security of its own areas. An attack in the interior of the country would be more demeaning.

If the Army imposes caution by deploying soldiers in uniform along major roads, then the public feels it is overbearing and approaches the courts, Allahabad being an example. An attack on a military cantonment is an embarrassment to the nation and severely impacts military morale, especially if families are targeted. 

No army in the world has that luxury of soldiers that it can deploy them all over the cantonments to ensure security, as demanded by Guruswamy. It, therefore, adopts a methodology of employing quick reaction teams moving through the cantonment in vehicles at random while guarding major installations and monitoring traffic by restricting movement through certain roads.

The national public should understand that the Army, which has stood by the nation in every aspect and would do so all through history, but has to act to ensure its own security. It must ensure security of cantonments to prevent embarrassment to the nation and itself. It may at times behave in a manner to cause inconvenience to the local public, which can always be resolved by a civil-military liaison conference. This is a regular conference attended by senior civil and military members of the city to discuss problems and arrive at solutions.

Blaming the Army may be easy, but understanding its constraints is difficult. Channels of resolution always exist, employing them is more important rather than throwing the blame on an institution which maintains a studied silence because of its ethos. 

Vande Mataram