Restructuring the work of the Police Station

In the Mumbai police force, the head of a police station is a Senior Police Inspector. This is an important system. From the north regional experiment it has been discovered that the decentralization of the responsibility of this officer leads to very fundamental changes in the working of the police station. There are four Police Inspectors apart from the Senior Police Inspector and the responsibility of the four beats should be divided among them.

Every employee at the police station, from the one at the lower level right up to the higher levels should be assigned their own jurisdiction. This scheme entails that the Senior Police Inspector should supervise and keep an eye on the overall working of the police station and at the same time should ensure increased participation of his staff in the working and decision-making of the police station.

Officers at the Police Sub-Inspector and higher levels in the police force, at some point or the other, are assigned independent responsibility and jurisdictions, beginning from a beat right up to an entire state. But that kind of responsibility and jurisdictions is never entrusted to the staff from the level of the police constable to Asst. Police Sub-Inspector. In the north region the working of every police station has been restructured in such a way that every such constables gets his own jurisdiction of responsibility.

It has been observed that irrespective of whether a police station has a staff of 20 or 120 people, only a few people work honestly and sincerely at any given police station. This list usually includes the Detection staff, mill special, beat constable, office orderly and so on. All the others at the police station have the desire to put in good work but because of the existing administrative system, the division of work is not proper and fair. That is why I took the initiative of redesigning the police station work at all the police stations in the north region.

The Samata Nagar police station has 21 Asst. Police Inspectors/Police Sub-Inspectors, 34 Head Constables, 37 Police Naiks and 67 Police Constables, in all 155 constables. Formerly, the four beats in Samata Nagar had 8 officers and a workforce of 40. Only they used to get jurisdiction of responsibility. The remaining 13 officers and 115 staff would work without any specific jurisdiction of responsibility.

Map showing the beat system of the Samata Nagar Police Station

According to the new system, Mohalla Committees have been established as per the number of Asst. Police Inspector/Police Sub-Inspector at a given police station. The Samata Nagar police station has 21 Asst. Police Inspector/Police Sub-Inspector so 21 Mohalla Committees were established here. The constables were as far as possible equitably distributed among all the Mohalla Committees.

So each Mohalla Committee will have approximately 1 Asst. Police Inspector/Police Sub-Inspector, 2 Head Constable, 2 Police Naik and 3 Police Constable. In every Mohalla Committee 1 Asst. Police Inspector/Police Sub-Inspector and 8 constables are available for all kinds of work in that locality. In this manner all the officers and constables get their own jurisdiction of responsibility and rights.

Every Asst. Police Inspector/Police Sub-Inspector in the Mohalla Committee shoulders the responsibility of presiding over that Mohalla Committee and every constable takes up the responsibility of being the second in charge. Every meeting of the Mohalla Committee is presided over by the Asst. Police Inspector/Police Sub-Inspector. In the absence of the president/chairman, any senior constable takes on the responsibility of presiding over the meeting.

Map of the Samata Nagar Police Station showing the distribution of the Mohalla Committees.

The designated chairperson and vice-chairperson of the Mohalla Committee will have to undertake the following tasks within the Mohalla.

  • Investigate cognizable offences. Look into applications.
  • During the Mohalla Committee meetings, resolve any civil/criminal/social disputes with the help of the members.
  • Obtain information about all the criminal, political, social and clandestine activities. To strengthen the intelligence network with respect to terrorist and subversive activities, keep all the information in "133 points register" updated.
  • Undertake foot patrolling in the locality, take action with against errant bars and other restaurants/hotels. Keep an eye on the committee appointed to prevent the defacement of statues, and also supervise the security of important people and sensitive places.
  • Ensure the safety and security of the senior citizens.
  • Conduct and control the night patrolling unit.
  • Take the initiative to celebrate all national and religious festivals.
  • Organize team sports and other events to encourage goodwill among people of various religions and castes.

The beat/group leader Police Inspector and Mohalla Committee chairperson will, as part of their responsibility, guide their associates, train them, solve their personal problems, and will help them achieve personal growth.

A register should be prepared for each Mohalla Committee. The columns in this register should include name of the members, profession, phone number, sign verifying their presence.

The team of vice-chairmen of the Mohalla Committee (at least two staff at a time) will visit the homes of those who are absent for the Mohalla Committee meeting and will ask them to sign in the register.

While appointing officers and staff for night patrol, care should be taken that at least one person from each Mohalla Committee (officer or staff) should be appointed.

In the mobile units deployed for night patrol in the beat, as far as possible, the designated chairperson of the Mohalla Committee or vice-chairperson (assigned night duty), should be included.

The staff/officers who have been asssigned hight patrolling will supervise the night patrolling units working in the locality of their Mohalla Committee.

The designated chairperson and vice-chairperson of the Mohalla Committee maintain a notebook in which they record information gathered about 133 points in their locality. This notebook is known as the "Intelligence network strengthening 133 points register". On the first page of this register, there is a map of the Mohalla Committee. The aim behind maintaining this register is that the members of the Mohalla Committee can get to know what is happening in their locality. Political, criminal, geographical, social, cultural, financial information and information regarding educational and medical institutions, about respectable people from various fields and other facilities is collated into this register. This information is used to strengthen the intelligence network of the police force. (see Appendix 4)