Police Commission should have experts from various fields, says HC

Madurai, Tamil Nadu, 22/10/2019: A view of Madurai Bench of Madras High Court, in Madurai. Photo: R. Ashok / The Hindu   | Photo Credit: ASHOK R

In order to redress the grievances of the police personnel, the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court directed the State government to constitute a ‘Police Commission’ headed by a retired High Court Judge and comprising legal experts, social workers and representatives from the public, apart from retired and serving police officials and civil servants.

A Division Bench of Justices N. Kirubakaran (since retired) and B. Pugalendhi observed that the High Court had already passed an order directing the State government to constitute the ‘Police Commission’. But, in 2019 the State government appointed a Police Commission headed by a retired IAS officer with retired and serving police officials.

The constitution of the Commission was not in tune with the order passed by the High Court. Police personnel were facing a lot of psychological and emotional problems due to constant work pressure. The court observed that if psychologists, psychiatrists and the other experts in various fields were members of the Police Commission, they would be in a better position to understand the problems of the police and give remedial solutions.

The police force has to be modernised due to increase in number of crimes and the different types of crimes committed especially, cyber crimes. Therefore, the candidates with qualification in various fields have to be selected for proper policing. Advanced gadgets should be available for the force and more amount should be allotted for modernisation.

“Police force is facing a lot of stress and agony due to non filling of vacancies. When they are facing risks in discharging their duties every day, they should be paid at least 10% more than similarly placed Government servants. The risk involved is enormous and cannot be compared with other services. Therefore, the State Government shall consider increasing the salary of the police force by at least 10%”, the court said.

The court observed that there were no fixed working hours for the force for discharging their duty. Though it was stated as eight hours, practically it was 24 hours as they have to deal with many problems which were occurring in the society. Therefore, the 8-hour-norm in three shifts should be followed strictly. The number of police personnel for each shift has to be fixed, so that they will not be put to mental stress, work pressure and agony.

The comprehensive directions are necessary for efficient and committed police functioning in the State. Then only, one could expect very good policing by the policemen, the court observed while disposing of a petition filed by A. Masilamani of Karur who sought direction to fill up vacancies in the police force.

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Printable version | Oct 26, 2021 5:56:11 PM |

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