POLICE REFORMS

 

Our police forces have diversified duties and are stretched to the limit. The number of policemen per unit population remains low by global standards despite rapid urbanization and rise in crime. The high degree of centralization of functions in a single police force is a serious impediment to the efficient discharge of their duties. Political control of police personnel undermines credibility of crime investigation and erodes public trust. Public pressure and political control sometimes compel the police to resort to unwholesome methods like third degree and extra-judicial punishments to produce short term results to appease the public sentiment. Policemen are seen as symbols of state power and agents of coercion and retribution rather than as friends and protectors of people. Enhancing the strength of the police force, improving training, deploying the latest technology and adopting community policing are important measures required to upgrade policing in India. Moreover, an independent, accountable and efficient crime investigation unaffected by populist impulses is integral in ensuring justice.