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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

Busy with odd jobs, no time for policing

Faizan Haider, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, December 21, 2012
First Published: 02:01 IST(21/12/2012) | Last Updated: 02:17 IST(21/12/2012)

If the Delhi government wants to know how many residents have opted for set-top boxes for television digitisation, it turns to the police to get the figures.

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The Archeological Survey of India wants the Delhi Police to click photographs of protected monuments from time to time and create a database to check any encroachment.

Similarly, the civic bodies would turn to the local police to keep a record of all illegal constructions in their area.

These are some of the many odd jobs that the Delhi Police personnel are assigned to do while their primary job is to maintain law and order in the city. The Sunday night gangrape of a 23-year-old has forced the top brass to review the job of police who have been reduced to protecting VIPs or doing clerical jobs.

"Every agency in Delhi turns to the police to get their work done. Why are the police responsible for illegal construction when there are the civic bodies? And the most shocking was an order from an SDM asking us how many cable users have switched to set-top boxes,” asked an agitated police officer, who wished to remain anonymous.

"We are equally angered and shamed by the gangrape. But we will protect the common person if you allowed us to. Limit our job to policing and see the change," he added.

Although the total strength of the Delhi Police is 83,762, a majority of them are busy providing security to VIPs, assisting civic agencies during their sealing and demolition drive and carrying out verification of domestic workers.

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