Over 70% complaints received on the Citizen Cop mobile app of the Bhopal police are either incomplete or outside the scope of the police department.
The user-friendly mobile application was launched on August 8, 2013 with much fanfare to better policing in the state capital by allowing locals to tip-off the department on suspected criminal activities in their locality through the app.
Since its launch the app has received a total of 1,404 complaints till February 15, out of which 1,000 complaints were found ‘non-actionable’, police said. Only 404 complaints or 29% of the total were found actionable, they said.
According to the department sources, of the total complaints received only 710 pertained to crime, followed by 293 on traffic issues, 275 on municipal issues, 39 on harassment cases and 46 related to corruption cases. At least 28 complaints were lodged on smoking or tobacco related cases, 11 related to domestic violence and seven were just feedbacks or suggestions.
People are using the app as helpline to address municipal problems: ASP
“The initiative of Citizen Cop was taken by the police to provide the public a user-friendly mobile application to assist them in informing the police about any suspected criminal activity in their vicinity. But most of the people are registering complaints that are non-actionable, as they comprise complaints related to municipal issues like damaged streetlights, garbage heaped in front of their homes, stray menace in their locality among others. In many cases information provided by the complainant is incomplete, which also makes it unsuitable for initiating any action,” Shailendra Chauhan, additional superintendent of police (crime) told HT.
“It is unfortunate that people are using it as helpline to address municipal problems. About 70% of the total complaints are irrelevant,” added Chauhan. The police are, however, trying to make the people aware of the application by conducting regular seminars.
“The police are conducting regular seminars at colleges and schools to make students aware of the different features of the app, like reporting an incident, searching for vehicles towed away, reporting lost articles, making emergency calls among others,” the ASP said.
HOW THE APP WORKS
Citizens can inform the police about any criminal activity in their vicinity by just uploading photographs/ video or by just feeding the information on the app
It is not mandatory for the complainant to provide his/her contact details or personal details while filing a complaint
The police reach the crime spot by tracking the GPS location of the place from where the information was uploaded.