BHOPAL: CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan has announced that he and his team would be removing red beacons from their vehicles immediately. “I welcome the historic decision of the Union government. It will usher in true democracy,” he said in a Tweet.
In the wake of the CM’s announcement, it seems only the governor and the chief justice of the high court will be entitled to use red beacons in the state from May 1. The central cabinet has also exempted the president, the vice-president and the CJI from its decision to scrap red beacons.
Union minister Arun Jaitley has announced that section (3) of the Central Motor Vehicles Act will be scrapped. This means that the red beacon regime will automatically end in the state.
Under the provisions of the Central Motor Vehicles Act, the state government has allowed governor, chief minister, assembly speaker, deputy speaker, chief justice and other judges of the high court, ministers, ministers of state, leader of opposition in the Vidhan Sabha, chairman of human rights commission, Lokayukta, chief information commissioner, state election commission, chairman, public service commission, chief secretary, DGP and advocate general to use red beacons atop their official vehicles.
Officers equivalent to chief secretary, principal secretaries, Vidhan Sabha principal secretary, additional advocate general, officers equivalent to DGP, PCCF, mayors, divisional commissioners, additional commissioners, collectors, additional collectors, IGs, DGs, SPs, CSPs, excise commissioner, transport commissioner, commercial tax commissioner, additional excise commissioner, transport commissioner, additional transport commissioner, additional commercial tax commissioner, chief conservator of forests, state protocol officer and district and session’s judges are entitled to use yellow beacons. Blue beacons are used by fire engines, ambulances and other emergency services vehicles.
Those not entitled were also using red beacons
The notification of the state government does not allow persons holding the status of cabinet ministers or ministers of state to use red beacons. However, the chairpersons and vice-chairpersons of the corporations, boards and commissions were using red beacons with impunity. Neither the police nor the transport department could dare take action against them. Now, they would also have to go without red beacons.