Q: The general sentiment among people, especially women, is that they don't feel safe stepping out after sundown. Is it your failure or the system which has failed you?
A: Neither. In the wake of the Delhi gang rape incident on December 16 last year, security of women has become our priority. We are trying to enhance police presence, deploy women PCRs and keep an eye on bars, pubs and liquor vends. We have set up a police post exclusively for MG Road. The results have been pretty positive as no incident of crime against women has been reported in the last three months.
Gurgaon Police Commissioner Alok Mittal during an interview with Hindustan Times at his office in Gurgaon. (Sanjeev Verma/HT)
Q: What has been done to make women feel safe in the city?
A: There are two aspects to this problem - detection and prevention. We are working with sincerity on both. The women helpline number (1091) is active round-the-clock and we take every complainant's feedback within 24 hours of the call.
Q: Are you planning to take any community policing initiatives?
A: We have already taken the first step in this direction by setting up a senior citizens' cell and a senior citizens' apex body at the district level. We will soon have senior citizens' cells at every police station. I have met nearly 45 sarpanchs and will meet the rest in the district soon.
Q: Do you think the city police force is understaffed?
A: Yes, we are short on manpower. But we have to understand that recruitment is not an overnight process. I am sure we will get a few hundred more recruits in the coming months.
Q: Would you agree that many municipal problems are connected to law enforcement? Are there any plans to involve the civic bodies in enforcing law?
A: Definitely. If the streets are well-lit at nights, chances of a crime being committed are remote. We have identified the problem areas and are working with the municipal corporation and the Huda.
Q: What have the police done to curb crimes involving the youth?
A: We have ordered the closure of bars and pubs by midnight and have been organising regular campaigns against drunk driving. We have also identified some problem areas and installed barricades there.
(As told to Leena Dhankhar and Siddhartha Rai)