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HindustanTimes Thu,17 Apr 2014

Parlimentary panel grills police chief

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, December 28, 2012
First Published: 01:05 IST(28/12/2012) | Last Updated: 01:06 IST(28/12/2012)

A parliamentary panel on Thursday grilled Delhi Police chief Neeraj Kumar about the gangrape and pointed out various shortcomings in the functioning of the police force.

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The parliamentary standing committee on home affairs, headed by senior BJP MP M Venkaiah Naidu asked Kumar to immediately address glaring deficiencies like vacancies at officer level and lack of vehicles to patrol the streets.

Union home secretary RK Singh, who was also asked to appear before the panel, could not attend the meeting.

Kumar informed the panel about the sequence of events that led to the horrific incident, and said the police control room vans reacted "promptly" after receiving the phone call about the crime. He also told the MPs that effective police investigations led to the accused being nabbed within days of the gangrape.

During the police commissioner's deposition, Congress member Sandeep Dikshit, who represents east Delhi Lok sabha constituency, is understood to have pointed out there was a disconnect between officers sitting in rooms and those on the ground. He said officials below Station House Officer rank act on their own with little regard to orders from superiors.

Dikshit, the son of Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit, had earlier demanded Kumar's resignation, saying the buck stopped at him.

Some other MPs noted that police vehicles were not being replaced as the finance ministry was not releasing funds, said sources.

The committee also observed that several vacancies in Delhi Police have not been filled and asked the home ministry to respond to the issue in writing. Committee members also raised the issue of paucity of women constables in the force. Kumar assured them more women constables will be recruited.

The parliamentary panel will hold its next meeting on 4 January, in which Kumar will provide a written response to questions which could not be answered on Thursday.

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