Checking crimes against women top priority, says Home Minister

Checking crimes against women top priority, says Home Minister

George warns 'bad elements' in police force to mend ways or face action

Checking crimes against women top priority, says Home Minister

Home Minister K J George said on Saturday that checking crimes against women — increasing alarmingly in the State — was his top priority.

The State government was very concerned about women’s safety as the number of crimes against them, especially rapes and sexual assaults, were on the rise. A few fundamental groups were targeting the fairer sex, he said. “We will take all necessary steps to restore a sense of security among women and check crimes against them,” George told reporters during his maiden visit to the State police headquarters. “The culprits will not be spared.”

The minister also warned the “bad elements” in the police force. “I’ll give them enough time to reform themselves and do their job properly. They will be mercilessly punished if they fail to mend their ways,” George maintained. Police personnel had been given strict instructions to prevent certain gangs from extorting money from people and collecting the ‘hafta’. George admitted that a few police officers were also hand in glove and collecting the ‘hafta’. “They should get ready to face action if they don’t stop doing that,” he warned.

Answering a specific question, George said that he would shortly visit the sensitive districts — Udupi, Dakshina Kannada, Uttara Kannada and Chikmagalur —  affected by naxalism, among other problems. “I will hold discussion with the top police officers there and monitor the situation,” he said. The government, he added, was committed to ending all types of betting. “Strict orders have been given to the senior officers to check gambling, unauthorised video games, cricket betting, matka, etc,” he informed.

The minister admitted that the functioning of Anti-Naxal Force had been adversely affected as it was without a chief. “An ADGP-rank officer is in-charge of its affairs, at present, but it needs a full-time chief. The government is ready to appoint a suitable officer to the post. We have a list of competent officers. An appointment will be made shortly,” he added.

George, however, termed the Naxal Surrender Policy “unscientific” and felt it should be liberalised. “I’ve a few plans. The policy will be modified after holding discussions with senior officers,” he added.

Besides, the government would shortly appoint a chief for the Karnataka Police Complaints Authority. “Lack of adequate manpower is creating problems in the police force. About 8,000 posts of various ranks would be filled soon,” the minister informed. During the visit, the minister received the guard of honour and held an hour-long meeting with senior officers.