From six police stations to Commissionerate: With over 100 years of history, Sangam city has seen its khaki system change

By, Prayagraj
Dec 05, 2022 12:02 AM IST

The British encountered stiff resistance in Allahabad in 1857 from rebellious sepoys and locals, led by Maulvi Liyaqat Ali, who freed the district for ten days. To gain better control of the city, the British established the Kotwali police station on the old GT Road in the heart of the city.

With six police stations established during the British era to the newly established police commissionerate, Prayagraj (previously known as Allahabad) has seen major changes in the police system over the past 100 years. In 1874, the British established Kotwali as the first police station followed by Colonelganj and others.

Kotwali Pollice Station in Prayagraj (HT PHOTO)
Kotwali Pollice Station in Prayagraj (HT PHOTO)

In 1857, the British faced stiff resistance from rebellious sepoys and locals in Allahabad, under the leadership of Maulvi Liyaqat Ali who freed the district for ten days. The British learned their lesson and established the Kotwali police station in the heart of the city on the old GT Road in order to gain better control of the city.

To improve the policing system, they implemented the Police Act in 1861, prepared by Lord Macaulay. During their time, the system was used to suppress any revolt against the government. Section 23 of the act was concerned with the duties of police officials. These duties included following the orders of their superiors, maintaining law and order, collecting secret information and controlling crimes.

Register number 8 at Kotwali is still in use after 148 years. The register despite being partially in poor condition is still being used to document cases and new pages are added to the register every year. The majority of cases registered involve gambling and theft. Records show a case of theft of 2500 that was lodged in 1939 while gamblers were arrested with several hundred rupees cash.

Records also reveal that till November 26, 1947, the cases were registered in Urdu language but with starting of 1948, the Hindi language was used for registering cases. A case of fraud was among the first renowned cases after Independence which was registered against one Nanhku of Pratapgarh on the complaint of cycle company owner Ahmad.

Later, Civil Lines police station came into being in 1910, Shankargarh police station in 1908, Ghoorpur police station in 1931 and Soraon police station of trans-Ganga in 1941 as per the requirements of the British government.

Civil Lines police station records indicate that the blueprint for the police station, then known as Cannington police station, was prepared in 1870 when the area was populated primarily by British officials and staff. On October 24, 1910, the police station was dedicated to the police.

Colonelganj police station was established later and it has records of cases registered in 1910. The police station was run in a residential complex in British times and a new building was constructed after independence. The police station witnessed the days of the struggle for independence as Anand Bhawan, Swaraj Bhawan, Allahabad University and Chandra Shekhar Azad Park fell under its jurisdiction.

On February 7, 1931, a case of attempt to murder was registered against Shaheed Chandra Shekhar Azad in register number eight. It was alleged that Azad opened fire on the police team with his accomplice. The investigating officer Rishal Singh Chaudhary failed to identify the accomplice of Azad. The records at the police station reveal that the first case was registered in the Urdu language under section 45 of IPC in 1910. Over 100 years the old crime register is maintained at the Colonelganj police station. A secret register was also maintained at the time which included names of localities, their population, number of homes along with information about revenue, market days, fairs, festivals, dominant caste, local leaders etc.

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