Cops in State to get BlackBerrys
BlackBerry-assisted traffic enforcement has now been extended to the entire State. This was officially announced by the State government here on Saturday. Over 250 officers of the rank of assistant sub-inspector / sub-inspector and police inspector of traffic branch from different parts of the State, who have been trained to use BlackBerry for booking traffic violations, are already out on the field.
The old system of using challan books and CRR books will be phased out in the next 15 days. The BlackBerry system is operating in Bangalore since 2008.
Deputy Chief Minister R Ashoka, who also holds the Home portfolio, launched the programme and said with this move Karnataka has become the first State to have complete technology-driven paperless traffic enforcement.
All the BlackBerrys are connected to the State Data Centre in Bangalore, which is accessible to senior officers to monitor the performance of each traffic officer in real time and they need not maintain any registers for the task. BlackBerry-assisted enforcement not only plugs leakages in the system but also helps the police keep a tab on repeat offenders easily, he said. Praveen Sood, additional director general of police (computer wing) said the response has been good and in less than a month, 1.25 lakh cases have been booked and Rs 1.8 crore collected as traffic fines only through BlackBerry in the State, leaving apart Bangalore city. Surveillance cameras Ashoka also inaugurated the installation of 45 surveillance cameras in the district headquarters of Belgaum, Bellary and Gulbarga. These cameras will send live feeds to traffic control rooms using radio frequency (wireless).
These are in addition to the previous installations at Hubli-Dharwad, Shimoga and Mangalore. Ninety more cameras at the rate of 15 each at Tumkur, Mandya, Hassan, Chitradurga, Bijapur and Udupi will be installed in the current financial year, he said. Senior police officials said the cumulative effect of surveillance cameras and BlackBerrys in Bangalore has led to increase in enforcement from 14 lakh cases in 2007 to 35 lakh cases in 2011. Fine amount collected has shot up from Rs 19 crore to Rs 51 crore in 2011.
In other cities too, the technology will help better monitoring and management of traffic movement and contribute to enhanced road safety through better discipline and more enforcement, said DG&IGP, L Pachao.