On the way to New Delhi’s international airport, three armed men lean out of the windows of a jeep, furiously waving at the steady stream of traffic to pull over.
As the cars swerve to the dusty edge of the highway, a convoy of a dozen sleek sedans zips past in a blaze of whining sirens and flashing red beacons, breaking all traffic regulations and leaving behind a tangle of vehicles in its wake.
A local politician is late for his flight.
Such situations are likely to become even more commonplace in Asia’s third-largest economy, thanks to a committee that this week submitted a report calling for all MPs to have flashing lights put on their cars to allow them to speed through the country’s clogged streets.
While India’s lawmakers cannot reach a consensus on key economic reforms in parliament (thanks to party infighting) due to shouting across the aisles and drowning out of the speaker, they unanimously rooted for a status upgrade on a list of India’s VIPs.
“MPs have zero work to show on their report card & yet have no hesitation in demanding increase in official status! Earn your increment Mr MP,” tweeted Rahul Kanwal, the executive director of Indian news channel Headlines Today, while “MPs” trended on micro-blogging site Twitter.