Police as rogues, recipe for disaster

Police as rogues, recipe for disaster

The police are looked upon as guardians of the law. The Indian Penal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code give them enormous powers to deal with the criminals and other law-breakers and provide a sense of security to law-abiding citizens. The Constitution, and the rule of law, has imposed enough checks and balances to ensure that there is a well-established hierarchy to maintain discipline among policemen, and those who violate it are severely and immediately punished. But, a few recent instances in Bengaluru of policemen turning rogues in uniform and the failure of their superiors to treat such incidents with the seriousness they deserve, are certainly a cause for concern. They also raise doubts about the commitment of the political establishment which exercises overall control.

Consider the case of an assistant sub-inspector and a head constable posted to guard a VVIP staying in a five-star hotel in Bengaluru. When the guest checked out and headed to the airport, he found that one of his bags containing Rs 50,000 in cash, a camera and some other valuables had gone missing. He registered a complaint with the police and left. On checking the footage from CCTV cameras, the hotel management found that the two cops had stolen the bag and walked away with it. On receiving the complaint, the jurisdictional police managed to recover the loot from the policemen concerned, but they claimed that they had taken the bag accidentally, and shockingly, they were let off without punishment. In another instance, an assistant commissioner of police (ACP) accompanied by a constable barged into a restaurant around midnight and beat up the owner mercilessly, with absolutely no provocation. A restaurant that does not serve liquor is legally permitted to be open till 1 am as per the government's rules. The obvious surmise is that the ACP's unprovoked attack on the hotelier must have had other extraneous reasons. When the police brutality on the hapless individual captured on CCTV camera went viral, City Police Commissioner T Suneel Kumar ordered an enquiry. The enquiry officer found the ACP guilty of misconduct, but a month later, instead of being prosecuted, the ACP was let off with a mere transfer.

What these incidents show is that the police top brass and those in positions of power in Karnataka have given too much leeway to the lawbreakers in uniform, which does not augur well for the society. Service rules provide for severe punishment in cases of police misconduct and if they are not invoked even in extreme cases, it is an invitation for disaster.

DH Newsletter Privacy Policy Get top news in your inbox daily
GET IT
Comments (+)