Dec 16 taught police a lesson

The shocking gang rape of a young woman in a bus has had at least one positive fallout - improvement in the working of a police station here.

The officers, who were present at the police station during the night of Dec 16 when they received a call from a passer-by of two injured people lying by the roadside - the gang rape victim and her friend, shared their experiences about the initiatives taken by them. 

“After the chargesheet was filed in 17 days in the case, I focused on improving the infrastructure at the police station and increasing the number of staff,” said Anil Sharma, the Station House Officer who was also the investigating officer in the case.

 “Before the Dec 16 incident, we were short of staff and had few women. Now we have 150 staff, including 25 women,” he said.

A year ago, the police station had only one woman sub inspector - now it has three, while the number of female constables has gone up to 20. 

The police station has also got two emergency response vehicles (ERV). 

“Other police stations have just one. Three more Gypsy vehicles were given to us for patrolling,” said Sharma. A round-the-clock quick reaction team vehicle and road patrol vehicle for deployment in vulnerable areas was given to the police station.

A separate room for the interrogation of women accused has been set up - the first one in Delhi, while one more lock-up has been added.

“It was our initiative that helped in lighting up the Shaheed Jeet Singh Marg which was in darkness, as no street light was working on the night of Dec 16," said the officer. 

Another official at the station said, “We had a tough time when we were investigating the case and preparing the chargesheet, but our efforts day in and out helped to get it done.” But a staff member said, “We were rewarded (for cracking the case fast).” 

The police station building also houses the office of an assistant commisioner of police, who controls two more nearby police stations. It also has a magistrate's office where hearings are held.

Sharma said they were working to prevent recurrence of such an incident. However, the number of rapes reported at the police station this year has doubled to 17 against eight cases, including the Dec 16 gang rape, last year.

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