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No alternative to good old patrolling

india Updated: Sep 28, 2008 14:15 IST

Residents of Gurgaon do not feel safe anymore. Some years ago, thefts and robberies were rare. Today, hardly a day goes by without a murder, armed robbery, carjacking or kidnapping being reported from the city.

We are constantly told that the police strength has been increased and the force has been modernised with sophisticated equipment and systems. Additional police stations are reported to have become operational. Then, why do residents still feel insecure? What are the steps that the police can take to restore confidence?

To begin with, the police force has to be visible. The word ‘cop’ is derived from the term ‘corporal on patrol.’ The knowledge that a policeman is within seeing and hearing distance is the strongest crime deterrent. The strength of the force is inadequate and it needs professional training to police a sprawling and developing city.

Next, there has to be crime prevention. The measures include policing and verification of illegal clusters (these have become the dens of criminals), verification of servants, and security clearance and training of security guards.

Thirdly, traffic management needs to be improved. There is lack of trained traffic policemen. Illegal obstructions, unauthorised shops and eateries crowd the already packed roads. Lack of traffic planning and traffic lights, and rampant violation of rules have led to chaotic traffic conditions – even short distances take 30 to 45 minutes to cover. There should be zero tolerance for traffic violations.

Large corporates and their employees are Gurgaon’s lifeline. They came here on the promise of a pleasant, secure, and safe environment. Lack of law and order will simply shatter the Gurgaon dream.

PM Sinha
Chairman, SURGE — Society for Urban Regeneration of Gurgaon