The Army has blocked the Race course road/ Point road to all civilians from today by blocking the road and even ploughing the said road so that access is not easy.
The Race course road/ Point road is a well known road for the morning walkers in the area and the said road was blocked for entry to civilians from 29th September 2011. After which a representation was submitted by the various morning walkers to the army officials after which today the said road was ploughed and blocked.
The closure of this road is in blatant defiance of a Supreme court order to keep this road open to all civilians.
Racecourse Road/ Point road was laid out in 1865 and has been used by civilians for generations for running, jogging and walking. The British then who valued the sport welcomed the civilians to this road including the buffaloes. In 1994 the Army had closed this road and after protests and order of the division bench of the high Court of Karnataka in 1996 the road was opened. The supreme court in another order said “ The action of the Army officers was held to be illegal, Unwarranted and un-constitutional.”
The honorable Supreme court had ruled that this road be left open for all citizens of Belgaum as it is their fundamental right under article 19(1)(d).
Racecourse Road/ Point road wends its way through what the army officers call EPTA(Environmental park and Training area) but which not only the citizens but also the Loksabha, thanks to the Comptroller and Auditor General has found that Golf courses by the army are illegal.
The 113.95 acre Belgaum golf course is on A-1 category land, which is meant for strict military use, this was stated in the CAG report tabled in the parliament. In 2004, then army chief had ordered golf to be a sports activity and renamed all golf courses as environmental parks and training areas. In the same report also mentions the unauthorized use of army land.
The members of the civil society will assemble on 19th October near Race course Road and will march towards DC office.