New Delhi, Jan 17 (IANS) The Supreme Court Thursday directed all the state and union territory governments to file the "rules, orders or guidelines" permitting the use of red lights on the vehicles and security personnel to various people in public life and administration.
A bench of Justice G.S.Singhvi and Justice H.L.Gokhale also sought the details of the names and designation of people having security cover, the number of security personnel so used and the total cost to the exchequer.
The court has also sought details of the total security personnel in each of the states and those engaged in maintaining law order, crime prevention and investigation and traffic management.
The court direction to the state and UT governments came in the course of a hearing where it is examining the issue of allowing red lights on the vehicles to various people as well as deployment of police and other security personnel for their security.
The court took a critical view of the way those enjoying VIP privileges were creating traffic problems on the road and putting common man to hardship.
As court asked the states to give details of the security personnel deployed as personal security officers (PSOs) and the cost to exchequer, Solicitor General Rohinton Nariman told the court that providing security cover should not be based on the designation and status of the person getting it alone but on the threat perception also.
Taking a dim view of the way security cover was being provided to people, the court observed that when a person having security cover lives 1,000 or 2,000 km away, there are not one or two but a dozen security personnel posted at his village home.
The court said that in Punjab, Haryana and in Rajasthan, even sarpanches (village council chiefs) are having PSOs, travel in cars with tinted glasses and no one can dare to touch them.
The court adjourned the hearing for three weeks.