States told to speed up modernisation of police forces

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 16, 2012

In what could be termed as a befitting reply to the States’ aggressive stance against the proposed National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC), the Centre has highlighted the States’ record in modernisation of police forces and nearly 25 per cent vacancy in State police forces. The Centre has urged the States and the Ministry of Home Affairs to carry forward police modernisation.

At a conference of Chief Ministers on internal security, the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, said, “No system or structure can be better than the people who man it. The internal security structures of India are no exception. It is, therefore, important that we find ways and means of improving not just the number but also the quality of our police personnel.”

Dr Singh said this meeting would suggest new and innovative ways to address this issue and make rapid progress in improving the conditions under which our personnel work. “If we are able to do so, we would be repaying in some measure the dedicated and loyal service of our police and defence personnel, who have helped us to make our country safer,” he added.

Earlier, the Home Minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, referred to the unfinished tasks in the Modernisation of Police Force Scheme. He said, “The scheme was allocated Rs 1,111 crore in 2011-12, but we had to surrender Rs 311 crore because some States had large unspent balances.”

For the current year, there is a provision of Rs 900 crore. He urged the States to address deficiencies in the implementation of the scheme. This would help him in requesting the Finance Minister for more funds.

Referring to the first-ever compilation of data on police organisations in India as on January 1, 2011, the Home Minister said there were only 100 civil police for a population of one lakh. The vacancies in all ranks were over five lakh or about 25 per cent of the sanctioned strength. 

The States spent about Rs 50,000 crore on the police in 2010-11, but that was only 4.76 per cent of the total budgeted expenditure of all States. Of this, only about Rs 700 crore was spent on training. 

“The findings speak for themselves. The study is a wake-up call for all of us and I would urge you (States) to take the corrective steps that are so urgently needed to enhance our capacity to meet the challenges,” Mr Chidambaram said.

Published on April 16, 2012

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