Delhi

Delhi Police orders drive to identify personnel with psychological disorders

A counselling session under way at a police station in the city.

A counselling session under way at a police station in the city.  

ACPs to hold one-on-one meeting with staff; some say mental stress is common among lower ranks owing to extended duty hours, family issues

For early detection of suicidal tendencies and violent behaviour, the Delhi Police has ordered a massive drive to identify personnel with psychological disorders.

The office of the Special Commissioner of Police Welfare and Estate Oversight has written a letter to all 15 districts police heads and all other units regarding the initiative.

The letter, written on April 30, instructs that police personnel who may have a psychological disorder should be restricted from active duties.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Welfare) Asif Mohd. Ali said that compiling a list of police personnel with psychological disorders is not easy as many “do not want to be identified and feel shy”.

“The Assistant Commissioner of Police deployed in each police districts and other units will interact with their subordinates in a one-on-one meeting to discuss the issue and prepare a report if any medication is required,” said the DCP.

He added that they have sensitised police personnel about psychological disorders so that they come forward with their issues.

“After the identification process, we will rope in psychiatrists and councilors for the policemen,” said the senior officer.

On May 6, a 50-year-old officer shot himself with his service pistol at the staff quarters in west Delhi’s Hari Nagar. This was the third such incident reported this year till Tuesday. In 2018, 12 such cases by the Delhi Police were reported.

An officer said that psychological disorder or mental stress was common in lower ranks as compared to higher ranks because of extended duty hours and family issues. “The senior officers often interact with each other during meetings where they discuss personal or professional issues but this is uncommon in lower ranks,” said an officer.

It is not an easy process to identify police personnel with psychological disorder.

“I had circulated the order to subordinates the day it was released but have not got any feedback. We were also busy in the election duty, therefore, a follow-up was not done properly. I have again instructed to re-initiate the process,” said a senior officer.

Easy cure

Meanwhile, the doctors said psychological disorder is serious but it can be easily cured at the early stage. A patient who is unaware of his situation can harm himself or others, they added.

Doctor Arti Anand, a psychologist at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, said psychological disorders not only affect the productivity of a person but also have a terrible effect on his/her family.

“For treatment, we have therapies, medication and counselling sessions. It is completely curable. If cured, it will increase productivity and restore the mental well-being of an individual,” said Dr. Anand.

She added that most of the time people do not identify disorders and hesitate to talk about it.

“But it can be detected by some psychological tests and interview session by experts,” she added.

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Printable version | Jul 16, 2020 9:39:52 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/delhi-police-orders-drive-to-identify-personnel-with-psychological-disorders/article27200847.ece

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