Bhubaneswar: A day after the Narendra Modi government announced its decision to ban red beacon lights on VIP vehicles across the country, senior Biju Janata Dal (BJD) leader and Dhenkanal MP Tathagata Satpathy Thursday slammed the move, terming it as a “joke”.
Satpathy, a four-time MP, targeted Modi on his Twitter handle and urged him to remove all A-Z category security to actually end the VIP culture. “Decision to remove Red Beacon is a joke. If serious, let’s see government remove all A to Z Category security. This will save taxpayers’ millions. Couldn’t care less if all cars carry beacons,” he tweeted.
Criticising Modi, the Dhenkanal MP tweeted, “Delhi knows, when Bangla PM visited traffic was blocked for Damodardass Ji (Narendra Modi). Similarly, metro gets emptied for PM’s fancy rides.”
Replying to a query on removal of security from the PM and the President, raised by his Twitter followers, Satpathy said, “All right thinking Indians who respect my hugely popular PM need to protect him. I would be the first to come between him and any threat.”
Similarly, in another tweet, he said, “When traffic blocking stops, Pilot & Follow cars discontinued, real VIP culture will start crumbling. Till then, this is a cosmetic show. Let us stop fooling people. India has had enough. What about education, health, Swachh Bharat cess money? Where is all that going?”
Asked about Satpathy’s call to withdraw high profile security from VIPs, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik supported him and said, “There is no harm in doing away with this (high security).”
In his reactions, another BJD heavyweight Pratap Keshari Deb explained that removing “lal baati” from vehicles alone wouldn’t help ending the VIP culture. “Only removing red beacons from vehicles can’t help in finishing the VIP culture. It is just a small part of the VIP culture. What about X,Y and Z category security and traffic jam,” Deb asked.

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