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Anandpal encounter was not fake: New DGP Ajit Singh Shekhawat

A 1982 batch IPS officer, Shekhawat has earlier held important positions, such as the ADGP (crime) and DG (prisons).

jaipur Updated: Aug 01, 2017 20:23 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Anandpal encounter,Anandpal SIngh,Rajput
Rajasthan’s newly appointed director general of police (DGP) Ajit Singh Shekhawa meets police officers in Jaipur on Tuesday. (Prabhakar Sharma/HT Photo)

Rajasthan’s newly appointed director general of police (DGP) Ajit Singh Shekhawat , who took charge from Manoj Bhatt on Tuesday, dismissed doubts that gangster Anandpal Singh’s encounter was fake.

Shekhawat was instrumental in handling the turbulent aftermath of the Anandpal encounter, when Rajput outfits protested against the government, demanding a CBI inquiry into the incident.

He had visited Sanvrad, the village of the slain gangster, mediated in talks with Rajput leaders and it was under his supervision the body of Anandpal was cremated 19 days after he was killed on June 24 in a police encounter in Churu district.

A 1982 batch IPS officer, Shekhawat has earlier held important positions, such as the ADGP (crime) and DG (prisons).

In an interview with HT, the new DGP spoke about his plans to curb crime in the state, the Anandpal encounter and other challenges in front of the police.

One of the major challenges that Rajasthan police face today is the problem of staff shortage. Is the shortage resulting in weakening the beat and information gathering system?

The task of the police is multifarious and I feel that if the cops have a grip over the locality which they have been assigned, then there shouldn’t be any problems in executing their responsibilities and being constantly in touch with the situation at the ground level.

In recent times, the problem of illegal weapons in Jaipur has come to the fore. How do the police plan to deal with it?

Illegal weapons being smuggled to Jaipur is not new and there have been instances when strict action has been taken against wrongdoers. There are several areas and border districts, such as Alwar and Bharatpur, where we will keep an eye to check such illegal activities.

Your thoughts on the proposal for a CBI inquiry in the Anandpal Singh encounter.

I have personally inspected the site of the encounter and can say there is not even one per cent doubt on the authenticity of the encounter. The CBI inquiry will establish the truth, which the police have been saying since the first day.

New methods of crime, such as cyber offences, are becoming common and what the police force should do to be adept at handling them?

Regular workshops and training sessions are held to train our staff in techniques to deal with cyber crime cases. We will continue to sensitise the police through such initiatives that will contribute a lot to make us more adept at solving such cases.

What will be your priorities to curb crime?

The police force will continue to provide security to citizens. Our target will be to bring down the number of unnatural deaths. Once this is achieved, then automatically a substantial chunk of crimes and their rates of occurring will come down.

First Published: Aug 01, 2017 20:23 IST