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Wanted: Specialists for Delhi Police

Despite being ‘capable in every respect’, the functioning of the Delhi Police, claim senior officers, has been systematically dismembered by both internal politics and external policies. Jatin Anand and Karn Pratap Singh report.

delhi Updated: Sep 14, 2011 14:53 IST

Tackling street crime or thwarting terror is all about a knack for sniffing it out — or the lack of it. But sometimes bigger forces play a huge role. Despite being ‘capable in every respect’, the functioning of the Delhi Police, claim senior officers, has been systematically dismembered by both internal politics and external policies.

Add to these the lack of perspective that makes policing being viewed just as a job to be done, and you get a law enforcement agency fated to stumble on to ‘specialists’ by accident instead of inducting them by design.

"Many join police force to experience the ‘thrill of the chase’ — to bring the bad guy to justice. But some time later, disillusionment settles in. They are bogged down with an ever-rising pile of work, inhuman working hours and ancillary duties like standing guard for visiting foreign http://www.hindustantimes.com/images/HTPopups/140911/14_09_pg02b.jpgdignitaries," admitted a senior police officer.

On an average, it takes a field operative at least a year to develop a ‘fruitful’ lead. And usually, the officer is transferred just as he is on the brink of solving a case. The same fate befalls senior IPS officers.

These officers, as per home ministry guidelines, are supposed to serve at both ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ locations across the states of Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Mizoram and each of the seven Union Territories.

“It’s not that there aren’t men who want to do the job because it’s dangerous. It’s just that they are discouraged by internal problems like lack of source money and not getting rewards on time. Those on the top fall prey to political manoeuvring and affirmative action by the ministry,” the officer added.

So most officers famous for their knowledge of terror attacks are serving in battalions, local districts and even as far as Mizoram because their political bosses deem it better this way.

Meanwhile, too many cooks have been spoiling the broth as far as sharing intelligence inputs are concerned. While many blame it on the lack of two-way traffic between the state police and intelligence agencies, others claim intelligence inputs have stopped coming altogether.

“Earlier, we used to get inputs from the Intelligence Bureau, but the process has been declining steadily since 2008. That is why, we began cracking down on interstate criminals, so that we could get our own inputs,” the officer said.

“The kind of security apparatus the Americans have at their airports is mind-boggling. And here, there are three agencies squabbling over petty issues. Moreover, most CCTVs at the airport don’t work," another officer admitted.