Govt takes initiatives to shun red beacons

Nongkrem MDC Lambor Malngiang’s vehicle still has red beacons as well as tinted glasses despite the recent Supreme Court orders. (ST)

SHILLONG: The State Government, which has examined the recent Supreme Court order banning the use of red beacons and multi-toned horn, is preparing a list of dignitaries who can avail the facility.

An official source said that those who can avail red bacons include “Chairman of State Planning Board, Chairperson of Meghalaya Public Service Commission, Chief Secretary, Chief Justice of Meghalaya High Court, Judges of High Court and all those have been equated with salary, perks, and status as that of above”. Moreover, the Chief Minister, Ministers, Deputy Ministers, Speaker and the Deputy Speaker can also use the red beacons. If the status of the parliamentary secretaries is equated with a Deputy Minister, they can also avail the read beacons, the official added.

Neither Director General of Police nor other police officials can avail the red beacons as they are directed to use only blue beacons or a mixture of blue and white colours.

“The men in uniform, operational agencies which require un-hindered access to the roads for performance of their duty, those engaged in emergency duties such as ambulance services, fire services, emergency maintenance and police vehicles used as escorts or pilots or for law and order duties shall not be entitled to have red lights, but lights of other colours,-blue, white or multicolored light”, the Supreme Court order said.

“In case the vehicles are not carrying dignitaries, red or blue light, as the case may be, light shall not be used and be covered by black cover”, the order said.

It was on December 10 last year that the Supreme Court issued the order restricting the use of red beacons giving three months time for the Government to implement the order.

However, the Court directed the state and the union territories to ban the use of multi toned horns from vehicles other than those who are permitted to use, within one month.

The Supreme Court also asked the state governments to amend the state motor vehicle rules to increase the fine against the violators of the instructions of the Court.

The State Government, however, is slow in taking action against the misuse of red beacons and horns in the State.