Stain on khaki darkens; city police in the dock

  • Vijay Kumar Yadav, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: May 01, 2015 00:26 IST

Three policemen from Saki Naka police station were arrested after a model alleged that she was raped inside a police beat chowki.

A constable from Marine Drive was caught with drugs worth more than Rs24 crore.
An assistant inspector from Khar police station was arrested for graft after he tried to frame a builder in a fake gang-rape case.
Responsible for keeping us safe, more policemen are ending up behind bars, with cases of graft, rackets, and even sexual assault putting the credibility of the police force on the line.

And all of this is despite police commissioner Rakesh Maria’s zero-tolerance policy, which saw many officers being transferred for their subordinates’ actions.

Former top cops attributed the increased indiscipline to decline in values, extensive politicisation of the force and inability to create role models.

“Lack of supervision, poor control over subordinates, and decline in the value of policeman’s conduct are major concerns,” said MN Singh, former police commissioner.

Singh believes taking action against a few policemen is not the solution. “The guilty need to be punished continuously,” he said

Praising Maria for his action against rogue policemen, and also for making it mandatory for the lower rung policemen to take prior permission before carrying out a PITA raid, Singh said, “The commissioner should also review all police chowkies, as most malpractices are carried out there.”

Former top cop Julio Ribeiro said politicisation of the force was responsible for the state of the city police. “Even an ordinary police constable is connected to a politician, and knows he can go scot-free,” he said.

According to Ribeiro, senior officers should be given a free hand to take action against policemen involved in criminal activities, and there should be no political pressure. “Senior officers need to set an example for their juniors, and must not indulge in such practices,” he added.

Former director general of police SS Virk agreed. “There are black sheep in every force. But it is the senior officer’s job to keep them under control. In serious cases, the officer should be dismissed without any departmental inquiry. This will send a strong message to the force,” he said.

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