Maharashtra: State departments to get ranks based on clean record
With discontent emanating from various quarters over government guidelines restricting use of red beacons, state chief secretary J S Saharia has asked police and transport officials to clamp down breaches without fear.
This is the first time in Maharashtra that government departments will be ranked on their performance. File pic
Saharia has asked officials not to cow down to any kind of pressure while implementing the April 4 notification of the state that restricts the use of red and amber lamps atop official vehicles.
“Since the circular has been signed by the chief secretary, the police and transport department officials should not be worried about any fallout if they book senior officials or influential people from politics,” said a senior Mantralaya official.
As per the notification, which follows the Supreme Court directives issued last year, the list of dignitaries allowed red beacons is a limited one.
City Mayor Sunil Prabhu, who will now have to switch to an amber lamp instead of red, has objected to the mayoral post being omitted from the list. He has even decided to approach the state government to allow him its use.
A circular signed by the chief secretary lays down that only vehicles used by transport, police, ambulance, fire brigade and defence departments may use sirens.
Other vehicle owners and drivers must remove sirens and multi-tone horns, and officials concerned should ensure this compliance. It further states that government officials found violating the provisions will face disciplinary action.
The police and RTO officials should levy penalty, and submit to the heads of the concerned departments a proposal of action against officials found violating the norms, reads the circular.
The notification comes at a time when misuse of red and amber lamps atop vehicles is rampant. The red beacons were being used by politicians even when they were not on duty.
Those found trespassing the guidelines are mostly government officials and persons of influence from political classes.