OPENING AND operating a security agency just became tougher in Indore. Unlike in the past, when all one needed to open a security agency was a business licence from Indore Municipal Corporation (IMC), from now antecedents of those employed at the security agencies and their gun licences would have to be vetted by the SP before the licence can be issued by IMC.
In an order issued on September 4, the Collector has directed the IMC Commissioner to issue new licences for opening of security agencies only after the Indore SP has vetted them.
The logic behind the regulation is simple. “The men employed by security agencies guard and are entrusted with life and property of people. Yet, in many cases, their own antecedents are not known. Since they do such an important job, they should be brought under ambit of regulation. This would also help in culling the unwanted elements from the trade,” said SP Anshuman Yadav.
The scenario is indeed scary. There is no crosschecking by the administration about the security agencies, and any Tom, Dick and Harry can open a security agency. The investment is not much. An office, some men with guns, and then you don them in uniforms, and presto, you are in business.
But, do the men employed at the agency have a criminal background? For all you know, the man you left to guard your house might himself be in cahoots with thieves. And, in fact, police officers do not rule out the possibility of some of those employed as guards having criminal records in other places. Do they have proper gun licence? For that matter is the owner of the security agency himself clean?
No one has the answers, because till date no one had asked these questions. Though the bigger and well-established security agencies do have their own screening procedure, often they too do not have the capability to crosscheck inter-state information provided by the employees. And, as for the smaller and fly-by-night operators in this field, less said the better.
The steps being proposed for the existing security services are twofold. Background of all persons employed at security agencies would be checked though proper channel – which means with the help of the police from the state where he comes from. Also, their gun licences would be checked – whether they are fake or not, or whether they are using the correct licence or not.