Following Union government’s decision of barring the use of red beacons atop VVIP cars including the ones belonging to the President of India, the Prime Minister and the Chief Ministers from 1 May 2017, the Delhi High Court judges decided to give it up from the afternoon of 20 April itself.
The decision was taken during a pre-lunch meeting where all the judges of the high court were present. In fact, the judge's vehicles parked at the high court were seen without the red beacon.
The Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice S Muralidhar have never used the red light and nor have they ever taken Personal Security Officers, which they are entitled to.
Currently, there are 34 judges in the state’s high court.
• The Union Cabinet on 19 April 2017 decided to ban the use of red beacons on all VIP vehicles including the ones belonging to the President, Vice-President and the Prime Minister from 1 May 2017.
• Only emergency services including the ambulance and fire brigade would be allowed to use the beacon light but it would be blue in colour instead of red.
• The Union government, hailing the decision as symbolic, stated that the beacon lights are perceived as symbols of VIP culture and thus have no place in a democratic country.
Currently, besides the heads of the government, many other dignitaries including the Lok Sabha Speaker, Chief Justice of India, Chief Justices of High Courts, Supreme Court judges, State Governors and Chief Ministers and the Leader of Opposition are allowed to use red beacons on their vehicles.
However, some state governments had already given up the practice of using beacon lights including Punjab, where CM Amarinder Singh ordered the removal of red beacons from all government vehicles, including those of the chief minister and other state ministers right after winning the polls.
The new Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath had also passed a similar order after his appointment. In Delhi too, CM Arvind Kejriwal had announced right after his appointment that no state minister or official would use red beacons.
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