Police officials want BSNL to digitise the line as early as possible

For almost every kind of emergency, the number 100 is one that all citizens use. Accident complaints and burglaries are often reported to the police through this helpline and it is advertised around the town. In Puducherry, however, the services of 100 helpline leave much to be desired.

Around one year ago, the police sent an application to the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) to convert the line from an analogue to a digital line so that they could include voice recording as well as integrate the 100 helpline into the modern control room, but so far the conversion has not taken place, sources said.

Writing down physically

Currently, when a caller calls the 100 helpline, a police official takes down the message and physically writes down the message.

The only addition is that there is caller ID, so they are able to see where the call came from. However, there is no voice recording and there is no ability to analyse details on the callers.

Often in crime investigations, when someone calls in saying there is a bomb or reports some kind of crime, the police officials in other states are able to record the call and analyse the callers voice, his speed of talking, background noise and other indicators for details.

This is not possible at present, which means the technology is not being used as desired.

The other issue is that the analogue lines provided by BSNL cannot integrate with the modern servers that have been purchased for the state-of-the-art control room that is being set up in Gorimedu.

This has caused a further delay in the launch of the control room, the source said.

There are three lines for the helpline, but often all three lines are blocked because of prank callers.

The general public should realise that the number is mainly for emergencies. If there was a way to trace back these callers, it would make them a little scared.

A BSNL official, speaking to The Hindu said, the company was trying to iron out the issues and digitise the line as soon as possible.

The police department, however, will have to ensure that all their dues are paid before a change can be made, he said.

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