Mumbai: In a bold move, Devendra Fadnavis-led BJP government has decided to downgrade security of top politicians of Congress and NCP and their kin, including former chief minister Prithviraj Chavan and his the then deputy Ajit Pawar.
The decision is based upon the "reduced" threat perception to these leaders.
"A high-powered committee, set up under Chief Secretary to gauge the threat perception of politicians, has decided to downgrade the security currently being given to some politicians because their threat perception has decreased," Ram Shinde, Minister of State for Home told PTI.
Some of the former ministers whose security has been scaled down include Ajit Pawar, Chhagan Bhujbal, R R Patil, Praful Patel of NCP, besides ex-CM Prithviraj Chavan, Narayan Rane, among others of Congress.
While Patil was Home minister in erstwhile Congress-NCP government, Bhujbal represented ministry of PWD whereas Patel served as a Cabinet minister in Manmohan Singh government at the Centre.
Narayan Rane was Industries Minister.
Shinde said their security could be increased in future depending upon their threat perception.
Fadnavis, aiming to make more manpower available for policing duties, had delegated the power to give security cover to VIPs to a high-powered committee, which is authorised to take decisions based on threat perceptions and intelligence inputs.
The decision of the panel which comprises the state DGP, the Commissioner, state intelligence, besides the chief secretary is final and does not require political clearances.
"Politicians that had Z or Z-plus security cover but did not really need it will get X or Y category cover," Shinde added.