POLICE REFORMS – Need of the Hour

Time and again we see tussle between the executive, judiciary and the legislature over the boundaries of their powers. Indian polity has been practicing separation of functions. we don’t strictly follow the separation of powers doctrine, as is done in the USA. where executive is not answerable to the legislature. police belongs to the state list in schedule 7 of the constitution of India and is one of the most important blocks to maintain peace, security, within India and on the frontiers.

constabulary forms 86 percent of the state police forces. they have a broad spectrum of responsibilities on their shoulders, even more than one can handle. this over burdening has negatively affected the quality of service. there is a mismatch in the skill set and responsibilities given to them. New threats with upcoming advancements in technology like cyber threat, banking frauds, phone call frauds and tracing the source of the mischief requires specialised knowledge. On top of it poor working hours effects the quality of work of the police at the lower strata.

Padmanabaiah reforms committee in 2000 and 2nd administrative reforms committee in 2007 , reiterated that the entry level qualifications of constable is inadequate and their training is not enough. CAG audits have revealed that state police forces have lack of weaponry for example, Rajasthan and West Bengal forces have a shortage of 75% and 71% respectively. States like West Bengal also have very low police to per lakh population of people ratio.

One can now draw rough picture of the overburdened, tired, demotivated and tactless police services that are in need of major reforms at the very instant. We must also understand the relationship between police and the public. The public does not place their confidence in the police forces as they see them as corrupt, inefficient people, who are not sensitive and aren’t concerned enough. Connect with people and trustworthiness is absent.

The bureau of police research and development under the ministry of home affairs has recently released the report. It says that there is a high vacancies in police departments such that 5.31 lakh posts in different states is vacant and 1.27 lakh vacancies exist in CAPF. The ratio of women in police force is skewed. There are only 10% women in police forces in states and only 2.98 % women in CAPF.

A major hurdle exists in efficiency for police. One is handling law and order situation and the other is the situation of investigation. There needs to be a separation between the two as propounded in the Prakash Singh vs. union of India case. We need specialised Wings for cyber crimes and social crimes. In this way the police can assess and allocate measures in a quicker manner.

There have been many suggestions in the past five decades regarding police reforms, various committees have been formed but not much worthwhile has changed. The subject of police belongs to the state list. It has been suggested that it should be brought under the concurrent list as maintaining sovereignty security of India is a question that the centre handles. Will also be better for the smooth functioning of police forces across India if we can have a same law for all the states.

Model police bill has been suggested in 2015 for the same. Article 252 can be used to make common laws. Various minuscule jobs given to the police constables must be outsourced to other agencies and organisations. Reduce the less important burden on the forces. Police reforms should engage in concentrating on core functions of the police which are important to maintain security, public order in the country.

There is no dearth of finances, there is only a lack of will to change. Is the only constant and one must realise that running away from it will only worsen the situation. Is forms the backbone of the executive. It is the link between peace and justice. Which cannot be ignored in a subcontinental country like India. Armouring the police with cutting edge technology, weapons, and training can go a long way in reforming the police services.

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

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