DGsP/IGsP Conference- 2021

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    • While addressing the valedictory session of all India conference of directors general of police (DGPs) and inspectors general of police (IGPs), Prime Minister appreciated the positive change in the police attitude towards the general public, particularly post-Covid.

    Major Highlights

    • Overall analysis: Previously he observed that the police used force and curfews to resolve issues.
      • But now the police leadership is serving the citizens professionally and had also earned their trust.
    • Institutionalised learning mechanism: PM also called for an analysis of all police related incidents and developing case studies to make it an institutionalised learning mechanism.
    • High-power police technology mission: There is a need for constituting a high-power police technology mission to adopt future technologies for grass root policing requirements.
      • Citing the importance of technology in the lives of the general public via CoWIN, GeM and UPI.
    • SMART policing concept: There is a need for review of SMART policing concept introduced in 2014 and suggested development of a roadmap for its continuous transformation and institutionalisation.
      • It envisaged systemic changes to transform the Indian police to be strict and sensitive, modern and mobile, alert and accountable, reliable and responsive, techno-savvy and trained.
    • Hackathon: To tackle some of the routine challenges, there is a need for involvement of highly qualified youth to look for technological solutions through hackathon. 

    Issues Concerning Police Forces

    • Overburdened force and vacancies: There are several vacancies in state police forces and some central armed police units at the moment. A high percentage of vacancies in police departments exacerbate an already-existing problem of overworked officers.
      • India’s sanctioned strength is 181 police per lakh people, compared to the UN’s suggested standard of 222 police per lakh people.
    • Infrastructure: Modern policing necessitates effective communication, cutting-edge or modern weapons, and a high level of mobility.
      • On numerous of these fronts, the CAG and the BPRD (Bureau of Police Research and Development) have found flaws.
      • The weapons used by lower police forces are obsolete and cannot match modern weaponry used by anti-social elements.
      • POLNET (Police Telecommunication Network) project to connect the country’s police and paramilitary forces through a satellite-based communication network is non-operative in various states.
    • The police-public relations relationship: This is crucial to effective policing, and is troubled by a severe lack of confidence. To avoid crime and disturbance, police need the community’s trust, collaboration, and assistance.
      • Most people believe police to be abusive and also believe that police personnel misuse their power in order to bring order to society.
    • Investigation of crime: When a crime is committed, police officers must file a complaint, acquire evidence, identify the perpetrator, and construct charges against him, and aid in his prosecution in court in order to secure a conviction.
      • The quality of crime investigation has reduced due to higher crime rates, low conviction rates, several vacancies, and overburdened police staff.
    • Police accountability: Both the central and state police forces are under the supervision and control of political executives, according to the police statutes.
      • Police priorities are constantly changed at the request of political leaders. This obstructs police officers’ ability to make professional decisions.

    Committees related to Police reforms

    • National Police commission 1977-81
    • Rubeiro Committee 1998
    • Padmanabhaiah committee 2000
    • Malimath committee 2002-03
    • Supreme Court directions in Prakash Singh vs Union of India 2006
      • Constitute a State Security Commission in every state that will lay down policy for police functioning, evaluate police performance, and ensure that state governments do not exercise unwarranted influence on the police.
      • Constitute a Police Establishment Board in every state that will decide postings, transfers and promotions for officers below the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police, and make recommendations to the state government for officers of higher ranks.
      • Constitute Police Complaints Authorities at the state and district levels to inquire into allegations of serious misconduct and abuse of power by police personnel.
      • Provide a minimum tenure of at least two years for the DGP and other key police officers within the state forces, and the Chiefs of the central forces to protect them against arbitrary transfers and postings.
      • Ensure that the DGP of state police is appointed from amongst three senior-most officers who have been empanelled for the promotion by the Union Public Service Commission on the basis of length of service, good record and experience.
      • Separate the investigating police from the law and order police to ensure speedier investigation, better expertise and improved rapport with the people.
      • Constitute a National Security Commission to shortlist the candidates for appointment as Chiefs of the central armed police forces.

     

    Suggestions/ Solutions

    Many bodies like the Second Administrative Reforms Commission, the Law Commission and the Padmanabhaiah Committee have suggested reforms and policies that could be implemented to tackle the above problems.

    • Outsourcing and redistributing functions: Some non-core police duties (such as traffic control, disaster rescue and relief, and the issuance of court summonses) could be outsourced or redistributed to government departments or private entities as a measure to relieve the strain on police forces.
    • Community policing model: Community policing entails cooperation between the police and the community in the prevention and detection of crime, the maintenance of public order, and the resolution of local issues, all to improve the quality of life and create a sense of security.
    • Specialised investigating units: To ensure better functioning of the police when it comes to investigating, the Law Commission suggests the setting up of separate and specialised investigating units within the police force which are solely responsible for the investigation of crimes.
    • Limiting the political executive’s power of superintendence over police forces: Various experts have advocated that the political executive’s role of supervision over police forces be restricted to enable the police to be more operational and independent while still ensuring accountability.

    Source: TH