Home Ministry seeks funds to streamline police

States must focus on justice delivery, says home secretary

Union Home Secretary RK Singh said on Saturday that the ministry will soon write to the Finance Ministry for funds to help states separate law and order duties of the police from investigation wing.

“The criminal justice system in the country is at a crossroad and needs remedies… I don’t think we have professional investigation,” said Singh, who was speaking at the completion of 40 years of National Institute of Criminology and Forensic Science (NICFS).
“We all are responsible for this sorry state of affairs,” he told the gathering.

The home secretary said he had been writing letters to states to separate law and order duties from investigation  duties but nothing has happened. That prompted him to knock the doors of the finance ministry so that police personnel posted in the investigation wing get incentives for discharging their duties with probity and sincerity.

In the past, the finance ministry has turned down his proposal citing lack of funds and also on the pretext that law and order comes under the state subject, Singh said.
“The primary duty in a sovereign country is to provide efficient criminal justice system”.

The home secretary felt that states need to change their focus from the current trend of law and order to investigation and prosecution as the crime  rate goes up in the country.
Singh said the country is still aspiring for the police to conduct a scientific probe.  He admitted that due to shoddy investigations by the police in the states only people without any clout or money who cannot afford a good lawyer are convicted.

In the process, he said, even innocents are getting booked. Besides, he pointed out, corruption has also seeped into the system.

Expressing dissatisfaction with the forensic departments, he said: “Police sends viscera for forensic examination but the report comes after two to three years. Sometimes, it will never come if the investigation officer of the case has been transferred.”

Previous attempts to segregating investigation from law and order have failed due to lack of accountability. 

“In the early 1950s and 1960s, police officers would get censure if the accused were acquitted in cases but that unfortunately is not happening now,” he said.

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