The 40,000-strong Mumbai police force is marginally short-staffed, but lower ranking police personnel, who constitute 80% of the force, put in more than 14 hours on duty every day. A majority of them stay at least an hour away from their stations, and this adds travel time to their gruelling 14-hour duty.
HT takes a look at a day in the life of a police man in Mumbai:
6am: A police personnel wakes up at his residence
7am: He leaves for his police station (south, east, north or central region)
8.30am: He reports to work
8.45am: The national anthem is sung
9am: The policeman is assigned his day’s duty
* Working in police stations:
* The officers has to update the station diary entries and report to his immediate seniors for the task assigned to him. There are about 45 registers that have to be maintained on a daily basis.
Assigned duties outside the police station or are at beat chowkies:
* The policeman on court duty leaves for court. He helps while producing accused and other court-related work
* A constable on remand duty helps in paperwork and around 2pm takes the accused to court
* A constable on bandobast duty is put on point duty for VIP movement, during festivals, near religious places. He has no fixed timings
* A constable on investigation duty usually travels alone or at times accompanies seniors to get details of accused or for questioning witnesses/suspects.
* Some staff members are kept floating to handle any emergency in the area
8.30pm to 9pm: Those working in the night shift take over from officers in the morning shift
NOT THE END OF WORK
* Mobile van and beat marshals start patrolling duties from 8.30am onwards and are relieved by the next team after 12 hours
* In case of an emergency, constables and even officers usually put in more than 16 hours duty
* During the night shift, around 30 to 40% of the staff is on duty
* On a normal day, police personnel will leave for home around 9-9.30pm. Those who live outside the city reach home around midnight
NOT ENOUGH POLICEMEN
* Current strength: 43,157
* Number of police stations: 93
* Number of policemen assigned to each police station on an average: 200
* Number of beat chowkies per police station: 4 to 5
* Number of policemen assigned to each beat chowky: 8 to 10
HOW A POLICE STATION FUNCTIONS
On an average, each police station has strength of 150 to 200 personnel. Of this, around 10% of the staff is on leave.
Each police station has….
* 5 police inspectors. The most senior is called the senior police inspector (PI) who is in-charge of the police station. Then there is one for detection, administration, prevention and community policing. One of them is in-charge of day duties and the other of the night.
* 5-7 assistant police inspectors
* 25 police sub-inspectors
* Around 150 constables
* 4-5 police beat chowkies in jurisdiction of each police station. Each beat chowky has 8-10 police personnel and is headed by an API or PSI. One PI supervises all the chowkies
* In every beat, there are two beat marshals and a mobile van to patrol the streets
* 3 duty officers of the rank of API or PSI, both during day and night shifts, attend to complaints from citizens.
* Total quarters in Mumbai: 22,000
* Dilapidated houses: Around 2,000
* 2,07,921 sanctioned residential accommodations in the state, the government has provided 86,491
WHAT CAN BE DONE
According to former police chief D Sivanandhan, the police can improve the situation by:
* Giving health and medical facilities to serving and retired officers
* Provide them with gym or other facilities to stay fit and free of stress
* Stop unnecessary deployment of police men at fixed points
* Increase salaries
* Give them regular week offs and holidays