The nation remembers its police martyrs and who lay their lives in harness while discharging duties, while defending the integration and to uphold law as laid down in our constitution.Every year this day is dedicated to remember our brave officers and men who sacrifice their lives for our safety during the year.This year has been some what different. When the entire world is engulfed with Corona pandemic which consumed more than a million lives still we don’t have exact knoweldge how long it is going to continue. Among Corona warriors these brave Policeman have been on frontline to establish the laid down protocol for an unusual practice to control its spread on instructions of the Disaster management authorities and provide necessary succour to those in dire need. While discharging duties many got infected but it never shattered their resolve to leave it as a normal routine instead enforced all regulations for its enforcement to prevent its spread and save precious human lives.
NATIONAL POLICE DAY
On Oct,21, every year Police Commemoration Day remembers the sacrifices of ten Policemen who died in Chinese firing in 1959 while they were on patrol. The Chinese threw grenades and resorted to unprovoked firing on a police party of 20 CRPF personnel which left ten killed and seven injured who were later handed over by Chinese and cremated at Hot springs in North Eastern Ladakh. This place again gained notoriety this year in June when Chinese troops tried to cross the LAC and were challenged by Indian alert personnel in which our 20 brave officers and jawans sacrificed their lives and who also retaliated and caused much bigger number of casualities to the intruding aggressive nation in physical fight. This shows the mettle of Indian troops who remain ever alert in the area where demarcation line was agreed earlier but still they believe slicing it, to gain more advantageous position which was denied to them by our alert army personnel. This area is having minus temperature throught the year and manning area under Indian control is not an easy task.
This year after sixty years serious attempt ware made to alter the ground position by overambitious hostile neighbour which could not be achieved by them.Later a series of meetings at higher formation between the two nation for disengaing took place but still uneasy situation prevails there.
A memorial has been erected at an altitude of more than 15000 ft at Hot springs and members of all State/UT police forces and Central Police organizations trek to Hot springs annually to pay Homage.
The sacrifice of Indian Police has not been less thirty six thousand more than all wars fought after Independence. This involves controlling insurgency, naxalism, managing law and order , providing security to all vital installations, VIPs and dealing with all kinds of criminals and bringing them to justice in court of law etc . The scenerio has tremendously changed with the advancement of technology and internet related crimes which has no geographical barriers across continents. The sources operate from annoymous places with devastating results. Thanks to Police Cyber Investigators, forensic scientists who reveal crimes and expose them with latest training by continuously honing their skills to track culprits and finally booking them.
The shortage of personnel at times make Police to face many sarcastic remarks from citizens. The UP Police force is around 50% of sanctioned strength more or less same is position with other states. The ratio of Police to population is at its lowest. When numbers are less the police is stretched and strained producing sometimes not a conducive policing. And police officers and constables are made to work for more than 14 hours in a day with more in some states.
The overall scenerio of our J&K UT Police is quite good as compared with the responsibilities of combatting with the invisible enemy in shape of insurgents who work as proxies from across borders. Some cross over there stealthily to obtain training in war like arms and explosives to disturb the improving conditions with upper hand of security forces neutralising dreaded terrorists on daily basis along with other Central forces. The biggest thing with such encouraging results is the least collateral damage during encounters in civil areas with pinpointed intelligence net work.
This year the scope of investigation has been widened with special emphasis on economic offences which have wide ramification for those who act under ground catalyst workers to sustain terrorism. The specialized Anti Drug Trafficking which too played its role in sustaining the parallel economy and to fuel militancy is being addressed with massive efforts of this present regime with large recoveries of contraband material.
The CCTNS which has been made operationable along with Cyber crime need to made people friendly with its accessibility to commoners and which can act as a major boost in generating confidence of citizens .This requires wide publicity with massive awareness camps to make timely reports for police action.
Our UT has unique geographical position with massive infrastructure development going on, most of the time, and it causes inconvenience to travellers and major accidents. The traffic needs to be made smooth with proper road maintenance and checkings to ensure safety of travellers.
Special attention on women and child crime is a priority in view of some recent incidents which brought the law enforcement agencies to be questioned these days where public need to extend its cooperation to nab those moles in society to ensure safety of women, children, old and infirm when world is fast progressing. The Police reform as laid down in Supreme Court directions need to be given a thought to make it operationable, which can narrow down the grievances against the administration to a large extent.
This day reminds of the great sacrifice made by police personnel in all corners of our nation to maintain law and order, to strengthen integration and secure safety of all the peaceful citizens impartially, in a diverse culture of our vast nation inspite of all odds.They operate in most trying circumstances with politicians , media and public frequenly interfering in their duties.
(The author is Retd IPS Officer)