For the first time in India, a police force has a special team of 50 personnel trained to deal with citizen’s issues, unruly crowds and agitated individuals not with force, but with compassion.
The personnel were trained in what the police call emotional intelligence (EI) and the team has been holding workshops and programmes teach the techniques to 800 officers and 2,500 police personnel across the country.
“This initiative was taken by government of India. The 50 officers were selected by the government to train people all over the country. We have had these resources for the past year, but the officers were waiting for their official certificates, which they got after clearing an EI test,” said Satish Mathur, director general of police, Maharashtra.
Mathur said Maharashtra was one of the few states in the country that was selected for the training.
Even though police personnel on the field handle a situation following laws, they are criticised for not being able to understand what the victims are going through. “The performance of the force and the positive perception of the police by the public not only depends on their knowledge and skills, but also on their emotional intelligence of the officer,” Mathur said.
“The trained officers are of the rank of assistant commissioner of police (ACP) and below. This is remarkable for us that the officers can hold classes in the state as well as outside state. We have been training personnel, but now we will also train others in the private sector. We want to reach out to other sections of people,” said Mathur.