If Metro 1, Metro 2 proposal takes off, department will be 10,000 short
For a city with a population of around 67 lakh, there are just a little over 18,000 police personnel — this translates to one policeman for every 372 residents.
This is as against the required strength of 22,000 policemen, for a public-police ratio of 1:304 which is said to be reasonable. Currently, the city has a shortage of over 4,000 personnel.
While the city police have taken other initiatives to enhance safety and vigil, the shortage of manpower seems to be posing a huge challenge, according to officials in various stations across the city.
Chennai will need additional 6,000 personnel when the proposed classification of city police stations into Metro 1 stations and Metro 2 stations comes into force. The classification is based on criteria including crime rate, area covered and population.
At present, police stations such as the one in Ayanavaram have a sanctioned strength of 45 personnel for Crime and Law & Order duty, but only 33 are on rolls. Similarly, Soundara Pandianar Angadi and MKB Nagar stations, which have a sanctioned strength of 50 personnel each, face severe shortage.
The Royapettah station has a sanctioned strength of 22 personnel. “Police personnel are overworked and do not get enough rest. It is tough to handle situations when you don't have enough personnel and there is a possibility of an increase in crime,” said an officer attached to the MKB Nagar police station.
The situation is more or less the same in many stations in the city where police personnel are forced to put in extra hours.
“There is an immediate requirement of personnel for the city. A larger strength was recently allotted to the police control room, intelligence section, Central Crime Branch and the traffic police and some of them were from the city police. That has reduced the strength further,” said a senior officer in-charge of police administration.
However, some police stations such as the one in North Beach and the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital have a larger sanctioned strength and sufficient personnel on duty, police sources said.
Two years ago, a committee with senior police officials studied 129 police stations in the city, excluding All Women Police Stations, and classified them into stations falling under Metro 1 and Metro 2 under, functioning one commissionerate.
A proposal was sent to the State Government which recommended that 63 stations fall under Metro 1 and 66, under Metro 2.
While each station under Metro 1 will have 120 personnel, including two inspectors (Crime and L&O) and 12 sub inspectors, stations under Metro 2 will have two inspectors and nine sub inspectors each.
A Government Order is awaited for the implementation of Metro 1 and 2 proposal under the commissioner of police.
“There is now a serious requirement for the execution of the proposed system as the city population is growing and a stronger police force is needed to tackle crime and L & O situations. Therefore, the State Government should recruit personnel on a war footing,” a senior officer said.
Keywords: Chennai Police