Post Nithari, India’s police are now in the mood for some serious soul searching. The force is on the verge of commissioning some of the country’s top social scientists to study why the police behave in the way they do.
From the revelations in the case, it would appear that neither accountability nor quick action is a strong point with the police. Now after six dismissals, four suspensions, one transfer, and a country-wide public outrage, the Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPR&D) has said that it has begun work on a set of agreements with 11 Indian universities to get them to take a closer look at the police and their performance.
“We have finalised the memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the universities, including Tata Institute of Social Sciences and JNU, to encourage them to undertake research in areas of policing,” director general of BPR&D Kiran Bedi said, adding that university officials had agreed to a preliminary survey on why the police did not register FIRs in the Nithari case and will submit their report on May 4.
The MoU is likely to commit the BPR&D to provide greater access to researchers studying policing in the states and central forces. Academics agree. “It will take time to make a difference, but a beginning was necessary,” said Sandeep Chatterjee, TISS Registrar.