After implementing eight-hour shifts for police constables in 32 police stations across the city, Mumbai police officials are drawing up similar plans for their overworked staff in the remaining 61 police stations.
Officials said that the eight-hour shift has provided the much-needed reprieve to their overworked force of about 50,000 men and women cops. However, some serving police officials said that the initiative can be effective only after a detailed analysis is undertaken and a model plan is created for each police station.
The eight-hour shift initiative was first implemented at the Deonar police station earlier this year after a constable from the police station pitched the idea to commissioner Datta Padsalgikar.
Deven Bharti, joint commissioner of police, law and order, who is in charge of all the police stations in the city, said, “We are trying to implement the eight-hour shift for all the constables and intend to implement this shift for all police officers in future.”
Some officials have said this shift is not feasible for all officers.
A senior police inspector said, “When officers and constables go on leave or are absent, we face a manpower crunch. Sometimes, I am apprehensive about implementing eight-hour shifts for constables.”
Another police inspector said that while the idea is good, it cannot be implemented unless a model is drafted after a detailed analysis. “Currently, the senior police inspector decides who will be allotted the eight-hour shift. A senior inspector is already burdened. We need to rope in corporates and human resources officials to conduct a detailed survey on the functioning of each police station,” he said.
“Also, while allotting shifts, several factors must be taken into consideration as those on duty need to know how to drive and type,” added the officer.
Another inspector said, “Without a well-researched plan in place, the idea won’t be effective. If instead of 12 hours, we are made to work for eight, then we require working in three shifts instead of two. This means additional manpower is required.”
Pravin Padwal, deputy commissioner of police, Zone 3, said, “In police stations under my zone, I have implemented the shift at Byculla and Nagpada police stations, while at Agripada police station, the plan is underway. The implementation has been smooth as the staff multitasks. In fact, there has been an improvement in the quality of work and the constables are happy with the initiative.”
Sunita Thackeray, deputy commissioner of police, Port Zone, said the performance in her zone has been satisfactory after implementing the shift.
Senior inspector Subhash Khanvilkar of Oshiwara police station said, “The eight-hour shift is working well for us. The constables are punctual.”
Where the eight-hour shift is being implemented:
Zones Police stations
3 Byculla, Nagpada and Agripada
4 Matunga, Kalachowky and Antop Hill
5 Kurla, Dadar and Shahu Nagar.
6 Chembur, Chunabhatti and Deonar
7 Mulund, Vikhroli and Kanjurmarg
8 BKC, Airport and Nirmal Nagar
9 Oshiwara, Khar and Versova
10 Jogeshwari, Andheri and MIDC
11 Goregaon, Gorai and Kandivli
12 Aarey, Vanrai and Kasturba Marg
Port Sewri and Yellow Gate