High court dismisses PIL by Chandigarh cop seeking fixation of 8-hr duty, offs for police
The Police Act of 1861 mandates that “every police officer shall for all purposes as mandated under law would be considered always to be on duty and can be deployed for duty in part of the general police district.Updated: Dec 05, 2019 00:51 IST
The high court on Wednesday dismissed a public interest litigation (PIL) moved by a city-based cop, seeking directions to the Chandigarh Police and the police heads of Punjab and Haryana to ensure introduction of eight-hour shift pattern in all police stations, along with weekly-offs, to ensure efficient and people-friendly policing.
The cop, Jagjit Singh, who is a head constable, had demanded that the recommendations of the Bureau of Police Research and Development, 2006, whereby weekly-offs and fixed duty hours were recommended, be implemented.
The Police Act of 1861 mandates that “every police officer shall for all purposes as mandated under law would be considered always to be on duty and can be deployed for duty in part of the general police district.”
He had argued that due to this, working hours stretch up to 12-16 hours without any offs for rest and recuperation. Apart from health, the gruelling and tedious work regime is also affecting the quality of police services. It was argued that an overworked police personnel will not able to perform to the best of his/her potential.
It was further argued that a Model Police Act was prepared by the Centre in 2012, according to which, the states were asked to take effective steps to ensure that average duty hours of a police officer does not exceed eight hours. However, no steps have been taken by the Chandigarh Police. Though a detailed order is awaited, the high court bench of chief justice RS Jha and justice Rajiv Sharma was of the view that any decision on this had to be taken by police department. The PIL was moved on August 28.