Vehicles saw only six years of service before being abandoned

Some government departments are known for using vehicles many years after they are due for decommissioning. Departments such as Forest, Transport and Highways, for instance, can be seen using jeeps that are more than 15 or even 20 years old.

On the other end of the spectrum, the city police seems to have given up on a number of cars that were gifted to them. More than a dozen Hyundai Accent cars are gathering dust inside the sprawling premises of the District Police Office, St. Thomas Mount. While senior officials said that the vehicles were unusable, quite a few policemen were of the opinion there was some life in them yet.

The cars were among the 100 vehicles donated by Hyundai Motor India Limited in 2006. The vehicles were in use until a few months ago after which they were dumped at the District Police Office, the headquarters of the erstwhile Chengalpattu (East) Police District, which has now been trifurcated into St. Thomas Mount, Ambattur and Madhavaram police districts and merged with the city police.  

Policemen, who have served at the DPO in various capacities for a number of years, said that the vehicles were used by Inspectors of Traffic Police (Enforcement) as well as sub-inspectors heading patrols in St. Thomas Mount as well as other districts. 

The vehicles saw active service for 6 years. With an overhaul and regular maintenance, the vehicles still had some years of ‘service’ left in them, they said. The policemen noted that even today, many wings such as All Women Police Stations did not have vehicles allotted to them. Such vehicles could be sanctioned for them, they suggested. 

A senior officer however said the vehicles were stationed there as they were worn out. An Assistant Commissioner in the city suburbs also said that regular policing was not affected as Traffic Police (Enforcement) and law and order police stations had enough vehicles. Further, the State government had provided Mahindra Boleros and Toyota Innovas, the officer added.

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