Chief minister Nitish Kumar on Monday directed that only vehicles of the governor, chief justice of Patna high court, firefighters and ambulances would henceforth be allowed to use sirens and hooters.
The directives came at a review of law and order by the chief minister with senior home department officials in which Kumar expressed his wish to clamp down on sound pollution.
Kumar directed officials to put an end to its misuse by politicians and bureaucrats flaunting it as a status symbol and to take punitive action against private individuals using siren in their vehicles.
Rules permit only ambulances and fire fighters involved in salvage operations to use sirens.
However, many police vehicles, especially escort (pilot) police jeeps of VVIPs, abuse the siren in traffic instead of using horns.
The situation has not changed despite the recent Supreme Court ruling banning the use of beacons and sirens by those not holding constitutional posts.
Traffic police jeeps, obviously never in a salvage operation, are regularly seen employing the siren instead of the horn. Jeeps belonging to the Patna police, transporting its officials and piloting VVIPs including central ministers, ex-chief ministers and state ministers in the state capital, regularly use sirens in the midst of traffic, forcing other vehicles to give way.
Normal police vehicles too. Apart from violation of norms, siren abuse also results in noise pollution.