As the rift between the Aam Aadmi Party and Delhi Police deepens, it is interesting to record what the experts have to say on transferring the control of the police from the Centre to the State.
While Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and Delhi Police Commissioner B S Bassi are grabbing media attention on the issue, Catch spoke to an integral member of the policing framework in the country who is widely known for his work for Police reforms.
Padma Shri Prakash Singh is a retired officer of the Indian Police Service and was chief of the Uttar Pradesh Police and Border Security Forces.
SR: What in your opinion is best for Delhi? A police under the Centre or the State? Why?
PS: Delhi's problems are different from the other metro towns. You have so many national occasions including Independence day, republic day and visits of foreign dignitaries, where the prestige of the state is it at stake. One cannot take any chances over what kind of Government we have in Delhi to look after such matters. So it is just that the responsibility of all stays with the Centre.
Whereas, there are petty incidents of crimes which the home ministry has nothing to do with. Such matters should be left within the jurisdiction of the local authorities.
SR: So what could be a viable solution?
PS: Bifurcation of power.
Most of the national level functions excluding the Independence day parade happens in New Delhi. Old Delhi therefore could be given to Delhi State Government. New Delhi at least for the time being stays with the Ministry of Home Affairs.
Let the State Govt show that they can improve policing in Old Delhi and then a later stage the control New Delhi could also be transferred to them.
SR: Would there be any difference if the control shifts?
PS: With the control the State government will have a sense of satisfaction. But if anybody thinks that it will improve the law and order situation in New Delhi, then that person would be disillusioned.
I do not have great expectation from AAP politicians. They would also meddle in with the policing and they would also create problems.
SR: How is the current Police set up in Delhi better?
PS: Whatever arrangement we have in Delhi today... it may not sound democratic, but it has the advantage of keeping Delhi outside the purview of local politicians. Delhi police has more freedom to act than the police in other states. But when the Delhi government says that other states have an advantage then they should be given a chance.
SR: Do you think AAP is targeting the Delhi police? Who is to be blamed for the murder of the teen in Pahargunj area in Delhi?
PS: AAP is targeting the police and others to divert the attention from their own incompetence. They have their won Ministers with tainted backgrounds- somebody with fake degree, somebody involved in criminal case and some in intimidation.
Incidents are happening and they will continue to happen. Such is the preponderance of corruption and crime is so intense in our society.
But politicians use these occasions to grab more power. Once you have the police under you, you have more power. More power leads to two things:
- You own criminal acts could be shielded. Police will not take action against you.
You have the opportunity of targeting the political opponents.