The doghouse of the City police
YOU COULD easily forgive sleuths for their tardy pace of investigation of crimes if you were to see the place they work from. The place also gives enough reason to understand why the Crime Branch is considered a doghouse for the City police. It is a dilapidated building shorn of any modern facilities, waiting to cave in any time.india Updated: Mar 10, 2006 16:40 IST
YOU COULD easily forgive sleuths for their tardy pace of investigation of crimes if you were to see the place they work from. The place also gives enough reason to understand why the Crime Branch is considered a doghouse for the City police. It is a dilapidated building shorn of any modern facilities, waiting to cave in any time.
A curtain divides the main hall between makeshift rooms of DSP (crime) and the inspector. An old computer that takes ages to wake up and work with its little memory is the sole reminder that technological advances exist in this world!
The existing office of the Crime Branch is running in a portion of the building that has long since fallen down on both sides. Plastic chairs, some of them broken, greet the visitor into this ghostly building where there is no arrangement for even drinking water. “We take it from Kotwali,” says a policeman.
The Crime Branch may conjure a picture of smart sleuths equipped with modern gadgets, ready to make criminals confess to crimes. But the office of the Crime Branch of the Bhopal police invokes a pathetic sight.
What is more, just one four-wheeler is at the disposal of the entire branch. No wonder then that policemen posted at the Crime Branch feel they are biding their time and treat it is a loop-line.
“It is a toothless tiger,” says an officer posted in the Crime Branch. “Can you believe for decades we have been functioning and we don’t have even the powers to register a case,” he informs.
“After catching criminals we have to make rounds to the police station and persuade them to register the case,” he adds. The cases which district police cannot solve are handed over to the Crime Branch but when it comes to getting encomiums the sleuths are left high and dry, bemoans an officer.
Officers at the branch regret they can not keep a suspect for interrogation and have no arrangements to provide food to a detainee. Another grouse is that there is no fund for informers. The Crime Branch has a staff of 25 and after leaves, illnesses and outside duty only a few policemen remain at the office in any of the three shifts at the office.
IG Sanjeev Kumar Singh agrees that there is need for a revamp of the Crime Banch and a proposal was made in the past. Regarding the lack of power to register cases, Singh says the aim was always to have a specialised investigation agency and not keep it tied to administrative hassles that could stunt its pace.