Taking a step forward

Taking a step forward

On the road

Taking a step forward

It is clear that the city’s administrative bodies and the public need to work together for a better tomorrow. On these lines, the police department has come up with their own ways of embracing the public, including bringing out videos which educate the department and the public about certain legal procedures.

On busy evenings or weekends, one can see towing vehicles that pull away two-wheelers and four-wheelers in no-parking zones. Arguments based on this are a regular sight. The latest video on towing of vehicles, posted on Twitter and other social media platforms by Praveen Sood, Commissioner of Police, Bengaluru City, aims to make this procedure clearer.

He says that making the system transparent is the aim of the police force. A lot of altercations happen between the police and the public during towing away of vehicles or checks for drunken driving. “These videos are aimed to standardise the procedure and train the police and the public. The video on towing of the vehicle is about 8 minutes long and is self-explanatory,” he adds.

A 100 percent standardisation of the procedure cannot be achieved only by educating the police. “The empowerment of citizens is a must. If a policeman is following the wrong steps, the public should contest this. The video explains all the details — how the vehicle is towed, why it is done, why there are two receipts for that and what happens when the vehicle is being towed and the owner comes running,” he details. By placing these videos on a public domain, the police aims to make the public understand that “they are not there to harass the public”, he says.

While the step is lauded by a few, some say that not all Bengalureans follow social media to get such updates. Karthikeyan B, a businessman, points out that a grassroots level approach needs to be observed. “Associating with residents associations and holding monthly meetings would give a better insight into the problems of citizens.”

Many opine that videos on how to register an FIR and the related procedures should also be shared. “Also, the force needs to be sensitised more. The department might be understaffed but they need to be calm and have a balanced approach towards all situations,” he adds.

Some like Chaitra Rao Sachin, a freelance HR professional, who has had a close shave with police personnel, says that they are functioning in a better manner now. “Once my bike was towed away from a bylane in Malleswaram where parking was allowed. The police admitted their mistake and apologised. Compared to earlier, police officers are more friendly now,” she says.

Apart from posting such videos, she feels that there should be a partnership between the police and the public on varied issues, be it honking or lack of lane-discipline. “Stringent fines should be levied on perpetrators. Just like fire drills in apartment complexes, routine interactions should be conducted with the police to maintain a good balance,” she adds.

While Farhan Zain, a young professional, questions how one will be able to contest the police with these videos, he appreciates the efforts. “Most motorists don’t know the rules and regulations clearly. They just learn enough to pass the driving licence test. There’s a lot more to be done though,” he says.

Farhan points out that a clear watch over two-wheelers riding haphazardly on the roads should be taken up as a strict campaign. “Be it behind an ambulance or another two-wheeler, it’s a constant race on the roads,” he says. Like others, he agrees that a more local approach will help in smooth administration.

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