AFGHANISTAN, Herat : An Afghan woman buys silk yarn for weaving from a shop in Herat on August 6, 2014. Western Afghanistan, once a stop along the Silk Road trade route, has a long tradition in the silk production process dating back thousands of years. Carpets are Afghanistan’s best-known export, woven mostly by women and children in the north of the country, a trade which once employed, directly or indirectly, six million people, or a fifth of the country’s population, but that figure has dropped sharply. AFP PHOTO/Aref Karimi

Pilot cars not status symbols, Mamata Banerjee warns party leaders, bureaucrats over abusing govt perks

She herself is known for her modest lifestyle. She had walked all the way to the state secretariat after taking oath as the chief minister of her state for the first time in 2011. Despite being the CM, she never uses a motorcade for herself, openly ignoring the advice of her security personnel. Her followers see it as signs of a true mass leader while critics find it as something insignificant.

Also read: How Mamata Banerjee turned to an old foe to help shore-up support against the new enemy 

More from IBTimes India: Jurassic World 2 LEAKED details hint at scarier hybrid dinosaur; return of Tyrannosaurus Rex

But now, Mamata Banerjee has taken a strong stance on her party’s members – even the small fishes besides bureaucrats– using pilot cars while travelling.

On Wednesday (March 29), Banerjee said at an administrative meeting in Siliguri in North Bengal that she was not liking the unlimited use of pilot cars, saying they are meant for security and not status symbols. She warned her partymen that this would not go down well with the common people.

More from IBTimes India: Ronda Rousey working with a new trainer, a possible return to UFC on the cards?

According to the Bengal home department, majority of ministers in the state take pilot cars while travelling in Kolkata or going into the interiors. While the rules say only those having Z- or Z-plus category security are eligible to get pilot cars, a lot of people put pressure on the administration to take pilot cars even if they do not get Y-category security.

The practice of using red beacons on their cars has also gone overboard and the law-keepers have not taken steps against it.

According to one report in a Bengali daily, one MP of the ruling Trinamool Congress in Kolkata even goes to a city lake for morning walk with the red beacon on. A section of the bureaucrats has also been accused of using the red beacons for personal work as well.

Related Articles

Bystanders watch as a wild elephant moves through a street after it strayed into the city of Siliguri, West Bengal State, India on February 10th 2016. The elephant had wandered from the Baikunthapur forest, crossing roads and a small river before entering the city. The panicked elephant ran amok, trampling parked cars and motorbikes before it was tranquilised. Wildlife officials have since returned the elephant to the forest. Credit: Reuters


Diwali, the ‘Festival of Lights’, was celebrated across the world last week by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains. The above images are selected from:

1. Indian widows wave sparklers as they participate in a celebration for the Hindu festival Diwali on the banks of the Yamuna river in the northern city of Vrindavan.

2. A police dog licks its face after receiving food during the dog festival, as part of celebrations of Tihar at Nepal Police Academy in Kathmandu

REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar

3. Indian women pose with earthen lamps ahead of Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, in Siliguri.

4. Customers shop for lanterns at a roadside Diwali market in Mumbai

REUTERS/Shailesh Andrade

5. 21 October 2013: A worker paints earthen lamps ahead of the Hindu festival of Diwali in Kolkata. Earthen lamps are sold in large numbers during Diwali, the annual Hindu festival of lights, as people use them to decorate their homes

INDIA, SILIGURI : An Indian child, the son of a street vendor, poses at a stall selling water guns for the upcoming Hindu festival of Holi in Siliguri on March 13, 2014. Holi, the popular Hindu spring festival of colours is observed in India at the end of the winter season on the last full moon of the lunar month and will be celebrated on March 16 this year. AFP PHOTO /Diptendu DUTTA


India Goes Apeshit After Beating Pakistan in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 Semi-Finals.


Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the jungle, this happens. This mighty beast had been giving it large to the locals (mauling 11 people) of Siliguri, in West Bengal, India and required a load of armed soldiers to calm things down. Calming things down involved tranquilising the big cat, which sadly, later died from its injuries.

It’s always a terrible shame when humans and animals get up in each others faces, as humans tend to have better weapons, and the animals lose. Rest in peace leopard.