13 April, 2021

What’s To Be Done With Our Cops?

With the world’s largest force, India is not short of police personnel. Free them from provincial satraps, and much of our policing troubles will end.

Police action was largely missing during the 1984 anti-Sikh riots
What’s To Be Done With Our Cops?

Have our police gone mad? Are they being swashed by the waves of cow-vigilante violence and bloodcurdling anti-Padmavati war whoop? Or are they being influenced by the cult of violence, spreading allegedly for electoral gains? Suddenly, several ­instances of custodial deaths and brutish behaviour have surfaced along with cases of shoddy ­investigation, suggesting that policing is in a deep crisis in India. The CBI had to arrest the investigating officers for the custodial death of an accused in the Shimla rape and murder case of July. In Maharashtra, on November 7, Aniket Kothale was found dead in custody after his arrest by the Sangli Police, who tried to burn his body with the help of a mysterious “zero police” (non-official volunteer).

The police are often seen to be in a hurry to claim success where the investigation is shoddy. Eight-year-old Pradyuman Thakur was found murdered on September 8 at Ryan International School, Gurgaon. The local police had claimed success following a bus conductor’s “confession”, only to have...

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