Azam Khan wants AK-47 rifles for ministers’ bodyguards à la DMs
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Urban Development Minister Azam Khan wants personal securitymen of ministers and other VIPs entitled to Z-category security in UP to have "at least four AK-47 rifles", not "old carbines".
His reason: It is "ironical" when a minister gets visitors like district magistrates or commissioners, whose securitymen carry AK-47 rifles.
In a letter to Principal Secretary (Home) R M Srivastava, Khan has asked for reconsideration of a government order, dating back to 2001, by which it was decided not to give AK-47 rifles to personal securitymen of ministers, and "issue necessary order that there should be at least four AK-47 rifles in the security of ministers and those entitled to Z security".
Khan said the situation — where securitymen of officials are armed with AK-47 rifles and securitymen of VIPs and ministers in Z category carry "carbines of the olden times in the name of weapons, cannot be called good from any viewpoint".
Incidentally, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav is the Home Minister, but Azam Khan has written directly to an officer who is not under him.
Khan is Minister of Parliamentary Affairs, Muslim Wakf, Urban Development, Water Supply, Urban Employment and Poverty Alleviation, Minority Welfare and Haj. He enjoys Z-category security.
On being contacted, Principal Secretary (Home) R M Srivastava said Azam Khan wants AK-47 rifles for ministers' bodyguards à la DMs the suggestion for providing AK-47 rifles to personal security staff of VIPs and ministers was being examined.
The order in question was issued by the state govenrment in April 2001. In August 2008, the government issued another order which reiterated the instructions, but said that when a protected person travels to a terrorism-affected area, or a disturbed area outside UP, the matter of giving AK-47 rifles to the personal security staff will be considered by a high-level committee, headed by the Principal Secretary (Home).
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