Saving on time and energy with the added bonus of speedy redressal, the number of complaints raised online has been on a steady rise with over 200 social media staff of the Bengaluru police working round-the-clock to address them.
On an average, the social media wing gets 12,000 complaints per month with people sending information, grouses and complaints along with CCTV camera footage and video footage. These online complaints are monitored regularly by senior police officials, including the police commissioner, which compels the jurisdictional police to take up the issue on priority basis. Any delay in taking action will escalate at different levels.
According to a police officer, 50 members work in three shifts to attend to the complaints. Another team of 60 personnel monitor, dispatch and coordinate with the complainants at the station level .
“The entire process is transparent and is being monitored by the higher-ups at different levels. If a non-cognizable complaint is filed at the police station, the staff may receive the complaint, but there is no guarantee of follow-up,” the officer explained.
The social media wing was launched to improve the police-public interaction. It is a getting appreciation from members of the general public, but it also means more work for the police at the station level.
“This is going to be problem for the personnel who are forced to take up extra work apart from their routine duty. We are more scared of social media posts nowadays than real crime due to its repercussions,“ a police officer said.
Ravindra Gadadi, DCP, command centre, confirmed that the number of complaints is on the rise. “This means that there is more awareness, and people are making use of the facility. But this facility is only for cases of road rage, bike stunts and other serious cases that warrant immediate attention. The others can approach the local police station. We also tend to get frivolous messages,” he added.