Police should not worry about spike in crime statistics and register every reported offence irrespective of where it has taken place, the Centre told states this week.
The Centre reminded them that it was their duty to bring transparency and efficiency in governance, two attributes that were necessary to uphold public trust and keep the image of police in high esteem.
The home ministry instruction follows complaints that police forces were still suppressing crimes. Burking crime - the practice of not registering offences – has been an old trick by police to keep crime figures low. It is largely for this reason that penal offences rose by just about 60% across the country between 2005 and 2015.
In contrast, the number of penal offences shot by 400% from 2012 to 2015 in Delhi after the police started registering most crimes reported by victims.
“The resultant increase in crime statistics, if any, should be used as criteria for opening of new police stations, deployment of additional police forces as well as for their better training,” Dilip Kumar, joint secretary, home ministry, said in the letter.
Kumar recalled that the conference of police chiefs last year had also backed this move but the police had still not implemented it.
The home ministry also told states to task the constabulary to go out to their beats on foot in 500 towns and cities to ensure that they regularly touch base with the local residents and traders. The increased interaction, Kumar said, would help the police improve intelligence collection for crime prevention.