The Punjab government has withdrawn the security provided to 424 retired police officers and religious and political leaders. Ten personnel tasked with the security of Dera Radha Soami, Beas, have also been withdrawn.
The Bhagwant Mann-led Aam Aadmi Party government had been cracking down on VIP culture in the state since coming to power earlier this year.
In April, the government had withdrawn the security of 184 former ministers, MLAs and private protectees. A month earlier, the security of 122 former ministers and MLAs was withdrawn.
Former ministers Manpreet Singh Badal, Raj Kumar Verka, Bharat Bhushan Ashu and the family of former Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi were among those whose security was withdrawn.
Following this, over 400 police personnel returned to police stations, Chief Minister Mann had said.
Mr Mann also said that the government will utilise police for what they are meant to do (work for common people) and not bother them (with security duties of VIPs).
In continuation with such moves, the Chief Minister had also announced that the government will put an end to the practice of former MLAs drawing pension for more than one term. However, the state’s Governor has asked the government to bring the bill in the assembly during the Budget session.
Former MLAs in Punjab, who get around Rs 75,000 monthly pension for one term, also draw an additional 66 per cent of the amount for each subsequent term.
“Thousands of crores of rupees which were being spent on MLA pensions will now be used to benefit the people of Punjab,” the Chief Minister had said while announcing the pension rule change.