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HindustanTimes Wed,17 Sep 2014

Geography lessons for cops

Faizan Haidar, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, June 16, 2013
First Published: 23:38 IST(16/6/2013) | Last Updated: 23:40 IST(16/6/2013)

An internal survey by Delhi Police has revealed that responders manning the force’s distress helpline number 100 are often clueless about the address of callers and frequently end up wasting precious time in trying to identify their locations.

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The situation becomes trickier when callers cannot clearly specify from where they are making the call.

Delhi Police, hence, has now decided to arm its personnel with knowledge and give them lessons on Delhi’s roads, bylanes and also alternative names of areas. The move will come as a boon for officers handling distress calls and help them trace calls and location of a caller faster.

According to a senior police officer, many places in Delhi are known by different names and a caller sometimes does not clearly specify the area he/she is in.

“We conduct random checks of the calls being made to our control room. A team listens to the recording of the call and then makes notes about it in a register wherein they have write down whether and if there was any delay from the part of the respondent. Most common remarks jotted down by the team in the register is ‘address repeatedly asked’. This delays our response,” said a senior police officer, requesting anonymity.

“Someone in distress would want help to reach him/her as soon as possible. By asking the person’s address repeatedly, we add to their trauma. Sometimes even the caller is not sure about his/her location. So we have decided to improve knowledge of our personnel about Delhi to reduce the response time,” the officer added.

Also, for quicker response, the Delhi police are working on a software that will give the exact location of the caller dialing 100 through GPS.

Currently, after dialing the distress number 100, the caller has to give details about his/her location according to which police patrol vehicles are briefed.

Sometimes, unable to trace the caller, the police officers have to call back several times to get his or her exact location and crucial time is lost in the process. If the caller has a GPS-enabled phone, his/her location will flash on the screen in the control room.


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