Denotification of Cantonments

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Source-This post on denotification of cantonments has been created based on the article “Defence Ministry denotifies civil areas of 10 cantonments” published in “The Indian Express” on 7 March 2024.

Why in the news?

The central government has decided to denotify civil areas of 10 cantonments (out of 58) in the country.

About Cantonment

1. About: Cantonments are areas which comprise of both military and civil population.

Cantonments are different from the Military Stations. Military Stations are purely meant for the use and accommodation of the armed forces, and these are established under an executive order.

2. History: a) They originated during the colonial era as military stations to maintain control and safeguard their territorial interests.

b) These towns were reserved exclusively for military personnel and were administered separately from civilian areas.

3. Types of cantonments: It is categorized into four categories based on the size of the population residing inside a Cantonment:

i) Category I: Having a population of more than 50,000.
ii) Category II: Having a population of 10,000 to 50,000.
iii) Category III: Having a population of less than 10,000.
iv) Category IV: Industrial or training Cantonments, irrespective of their population size.

4. Administration: Entry 3 of the Union List (Schedule VII) of the Constitution of India states that urban self-governance in cantonments and housing accommodations within them falls under the jurisdiction of the Union of India.

a) Directorate General Defence Estate is an Inter Services Organisation of the Ministry of Defence which directly controls the Cantonment Administration.

b) There are more than 60 Cantonments in the country which have been notified under the Cantonments Act, 1924 (succeeded by the Cantonments Act, 2006).

c) Cantonment Boards:
i) It was established under the provisions of the Cantonments Act of 2006. Cantonment Boards consists of eight members.

ii) The services provided by these boards include sanitation, primary education, street lighting, water supply, and maintenance of roads, bridges, and public hospitals.

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