J&K legislators protest denial of red beacons

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red-beacon-goaJammu:  Jammu and Kashmir legislators across party lines argued they are entitled to have red beacons on their official vehicles and walked out to protest the new guidelines on its use.

Legislators from opposition Peoples Democratic Party and the ruling National Conference together protested the cabinet decision taken Monday.

The legislators argued that if the state chief secretary and the director general of police were permitted to use a red light on their vehicles, why could the legislators not have the same right.

The state cabinet met here Monday with Chief Minister Omar Abdullah in the chair and issued fresh guidelines on the use of red beacon lights and flashers.

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The decision said: “In supersession of all previous notifications/orders/instructions on the use of red light on vehicles of dignitaries/vehicles of the departments, the state cabinet approves authorization for the use of red light with flasher on the top front of the vehicle of the state governor, the chief minister, former governors, deputy chief minister, chief justice of the state high court, chairman legislative council, speaker of the legislative assembly, cabinet ministers, former chief ministers, the leader of the opposition in the legislative council and the legislative assembly and judges of high court, while on duty anywhere in the state.”

The decision also authorized the use of red light without flasher on the top front of the vehicle of the deputy chairman of the legislative council, deputy speaker of the legislative assembly, ministers of state, the state chief secretary, the advocate general, deputy ministers, chairman, state public service commission and the director general of state police while on duty anywhere in the state.

It also authorized the use of blue light with flasher/bar on top of the vehicles of emergency services like ambulances and vaccine carrier vehicles, fire and emergency services vehicles and disaster management vehicles.