Misuse of the emergency helpline has cost the city police their peace of mind. Of nearly 2,000 calls received daily by the Gurgaon police control room (PCR), a majority are prank calls. In the last 24 hours alone, the PCR has received 1,395 blank calls, 281 missed calls, 41 wrong dials and 28 from Delhi.
In one such case on Tuesday, police said, some people in an inebriated condition dialled the toll-free number and played pranks.
Of the total calls received, only 116 calls were genuine where callers inquired the address of the police station, sought help or reported crime. The police also suspect that missed calls could be made by victims whose cell phones have no balance or they couldn’t explain their situation.
However, the police cannot work on genuine cases in such circumstances.
People under the influence of alcohol also call up the PCR and give false information, which makes things difficult.
“People should know when to call the PCR and why. The PCR team is active 24 hour a day and acts immediately on every missed call. But 90% of them are fake,” said DCP (HQ) Surinder Pal. The Gurgaon PCR numbers are 100, 0124-2223968 and 0124-2316100.
In several cases, victims are unable to describe their location as there are no road signs or landmarks in the city.
In one such case, the vice president of a soft drink-producing MNC had called up the PCR to inform about an incident but the police could not gauge the caller’s location.
But since the PCR team is facing problems in distinguishing a genuine call from a prank, people in need are often passed off as pranksters, officials said.