The Union Cabinet took a decision on Wednesday to do away with the VIP culture by removing red beacons atop the cars of Union Ministers, chief ministers of states, ministers in state cabinet and administrative officers. This decision will come into force on May 1. The Union transport ministry was taking efforts to ban the use of red beacons on the cars of dignitaries. Finally, the decision in this regard was taken in the Union cabinet though Prime Minister Narendra Modi had convened a special meeting of all ministers in this connection.
No one can guarantee whether people, frustrated due to these problems like traffic jams, cranking horns, low queues of vehicles on roads, etc. - will heave a sigh of relief after banning the use of red beacons atop vehicles of political leaders and administrative officers. But one thing is certain and that is the VIP culture has got a red signal with this decision. Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis has welcomed the decision of the central government and tweeted that he will remove the red beacon atop his official car. He even removed it on Wednesday and he was followed by his colleagues in the cabinet – Chandrakant Patil, Girish Bapat, Sudhir Mungantiwar, Chandrashekhar Bawankule, etc.
Commenting on this development, revenue minister Chandrakant Patil said, “Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis had taken a decision to ban the tradition of customary salute by police officers during the visit of ministers. We welcome PM Narendra Modi’s decision on red beacons and we have immediately started implementation of this decision.”
State transport minister Diwakar Raote said, “The Central government has taken a good decision. I support this decision and I will soon remove red beacon on my official car.”
Even opposition parties have welcomed the Union government’s decision. Commenting on this, leader of opposition in Legislative Council Dhananjay Munde said, “Such a decision was first taken by Amrinder Singh’s government in Punjab. Now, the Union government has been imitating this decision. The VIP culture will not be done away with only by banning the use of red beacons. Ministers’ foreign tours, celebrations, and advertisement by the government should also be stopped. I will also not use red beacon from tomorrow as I have the status of a cabinet minister.”
MPCC president Ashok Chavan said, “People were demanding the ban on red beacons and VIP culture. This is a good decision though it is taken late.”
It is interesting to note here that the proposal to grant red beacon on the official vehicle of a ruling party’s whip in the Legislature was passed during the last Budget Session. Now, this decision of ban has poured a cold water on the dream of red beacon aspirants.
Ruling party leader and BJP whip MLA Raj Purohit said, “I don’t feel dejected for missing the red beacon being the whip of ruling party in the state legislature.”