Staff Correspondent

The new model to ensure presence of uniformed security men at the door-step

CHANDIGARH: The Punjab police have launched a unique project in collaboration with the community for an effective prevention and detection of crime. The "Community Police Officers'' Scheme, which has been started in the Khanna police district, would be implemented all over the State after proper evaluation.

According to an official release here, the State police chief, S. S. Virk, formally launched the scheme after inspecting the parade by the contingents of newly appointed Community Police Officers (CPOs).

Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Virk explained that during the experiment stage, deployment of CPOs had shown excellent results in bringing down the routine crime in the localities concerned. He emphasised the need for a "public-police partnership'' to ensure effective control on unlawful activities, as well as instil a sense of security among the citizens.

Mr. Virk informed that due to shortage of staff, the police was not in a position to deploy its personnel at all places, especially the interior areas of urban mohallas and villages. With many new localities coming up, the security needs of the community also increased.

The Police Chief said that the new model would ensure the presence of a uniformed security personnel at the door step of the citizens as a CPO would guard a cluster of 100 houses each.

He said that once implemented in all districts, around 45,000 unemployed youth would get jobs.

Appreciating the initiative taken by Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) of Khanna police District, Naunihal Singh, for taking a lead in launching the initiative Mr. Virk appreciated the role of community representatives for implementing the scheme.

Giving details, SSP Khanna said that CPO Scheme was experimented in some of the mohallas in Khanna city from September last year. He claimed that it had resulted in minimising the routine crimes like thefts, snatching, eve teasing and drug peddling in the respective areas.

Mr. Singh said that as per requirement `theekrey pehras' (night vigil) in collaboration with the local people were organised in villages, where on previous occasions people had expressed reluctance to stand guard as they preferred to hire some chowkidars.

He said that in the urban areas shopkeepers and residents also resorted to hiring migrant labourers as chowkidars, without ascertaining their antecedents. On many occasions these hired guards were caught for conniving in thefts and burgularies.

Mr. Singh said that under the scheme, unemployed educated local youth would be appointed as CPOs and would don a blue uniform.

They would be trained to guard the same area of 100 houses, under the full supervision of the local police station. The CPOs would also provide information regarding the activities of unlawful elements in their areas to the local police.