Delhi Police have finally begun cleaning house, starting with the traffic cops, the keepers of road safety.
In a rare move against corruption, they have registered a case against a bunch of traffic police personnel, charging them with taking bribes to allow commercial vehicles illegally ply on roads, thereby posing a threat to commuters.
Initiation of criminal proceedings against corrupt cops is a significant and refreshing departure from the practice of initiating departmental or vigilance inquiry, which often ends with only departmental action.
The case — a proof of the nexus between the traffic cops and law-breaking transporters — is part of an effort to weed out corruption from the traffic wing, said a senior police officer.
Surprise checks by police’s vigilance teams last month found several traffic police personnel taking bribes unabashedly in Nangloi area of west Delhi, an officer said.
A few days ago, the Crime Branch registered a case under the Prevention of Corruption Act at the Nangloi police station. “We have registered a case on the basis of the vigilance report. Investigations are on,” said Alok Kumar Verma, joint commissioner of police (crime).
A police source said the FIR does not name any officer but initial investigations revealed the names of at least four cops. The source said the idea of surprise checks came from Commissioner YS Dadwal.
“Vigilance teams were posted in Nangloi and they found traffic police cops stopping several commercial vehicles but letting them go without any check. The teams then chased these vehicles and questioned the drivers, who revealed they had paid bribes,” said a police officer.
The registration of the case follows the disbanding of the PRG Cell, which used to work as the anti-corruption unit of the traffic police, in October. This job is now left under the supervision of special commissioner of police (vigilance).