Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal desperately wants the cops, and he’s doing something about it.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal desperately wants the cops, and he’s doing something about it. 

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government, which has been alleging that the Delhi Police have “completely failed” to provide safety to the citizens, is now planning to move the court seeking a clarity on who should have command over the police. 

The state government, which is in the process of seeking legal opinions on the issue, will move either the Delhi High Court or the Supreme Court, according to sources. 

If it finally decides to proceed, the raging issue will be coming up before a court for the first time. Kejriwal has been raising the demand for control over the Delhi Police, which now reports to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), following spurt in crimes against women and children. 

The fresh demand and  plan to move the court came in the wake of outrage over the recent gang rape of two minors — a two-and-half-year-old girl and a five-year-old. 

The AAP government is also using a recent survey conducted by an NGO — Centre For Media Studies — which said corruption in the Delhi Police was high while graft cases had come down in the Delhi government departments. 

The government seeks clear answers on as “to whom are the Delhi Police accountable to, when Delhi had a separate elected government, why should police reforms and urgent steps for improvement in law and order get stuck for want of manpower and funds, and why should the public suffer on that account?” 

“We are seeking a legal opinion on moving the court. The government may move the Delhi High Court, which after taking suo motu notice of the Nirbhaya incident, is issuing periodic orders for improvement of law and order in Delhi, and seeks impalement in that hearing. We also have the option of approaching the Supreme Court directly on the issue,” a source told Mail Today. 

The state government feels that the need for intervention has arisen because the Union home ministry had told the HC, which has been asking for separate wings for criminal investigation duty and law & order duties for better functioning of the police, that it was not practicable owing to shortage of manpower and funds.

The home ministry had told the court that 16,000 more personnel would be required to divide investigation and crime detection from law and order wing. 

This, according to the ministry, will also incur an extra expenditure of approximately Rs 475 crore annually, which it cannot afford. 

“The control over police can also be divided...For example, the MHA can be in control of the police force in New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) areas and other high-sensitive areas to look after VIP security, while MCD and other areas can be left to the state government. The ministry has to look after the security of the entire country. The state government would be better equipped to take care of local security,” said the source. 

“Any issue of manpower and fund crunch can be addressed by the state government, if given total or partial control over the police,” said the source. 

It is to be noted that the Sheila Dikshit government had once recommended that VIP security duties remain with the central government, while control over other duties like traffic be moved to the Delhi government. 

The issue is important as Kejriwal very well knows the result of the wrath of the electorate. 

The effect of December 16, 2012 gang rape on the Congress’ disastrous performance in the last Assembly elections is a known fact. 

Even Dikshit had failed to convince the public that law and order and police were not under the Delhi government. 

After the elections, she had said, “The people do not necessarily care about such technicalities like whether the police and law and order are under whom... for all practical purposes, the Delhi Police and I as the CM were one and the same.”

After several unsuccessful representations to the home ministry, the AAP government is contemplating moving the court, knowing well that the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court had several times in the past had suggested separation of law and order duties of the Delhi Police from crime detection and investigation wings. 

It claimed that the move would help improve the Capital’s security mechanism. 

“If the wings are separated, many criminals will not get away and the law and order situation will improve. One team of the police can go to the spot and maintain law and order in the event of any incident. The other team, meanwhile, can begin investigation without wasting time,” the SC had said recently.


'We were promised police protection', says family of murdered toddlers

In what reminds one of the findings of the Justice Iqbal Singh commission in Mirchpur carnage in Haryana in 2010 in which the inquiry had indicted the police and the local administration, the Sunped killings of two Dalit toddlers too, seem to be a result of police apathy. 

This was revealed by a letter written by the mother of the two dead children to the police barely a fortnight before the incident.

“Dominant people of the village come to our house and abuse us on and off. These people came to our house again on October 4 and 5 and abused us. They said they will not let Dalits live in the village,” said Rekha in a letter to request the station house officer of the Sadar Police Station to accord the family some protection. 

Neighbours console the mother of Jitender, the Dalit man whose house was recently set afire allegedly by Rajput men. Jitender lost his two children in the attack

“Despite the police, these elements are fearless and we are under a life threat from them,” she had added in the letter shot to the SHO on October 6. 

Rekha said in the letter that after the incident that took place last year in which three people were killed over a trivial dispute over a mobile phone, the family had to flee the village fearing for their lives. 

“We were sent back to the village under the protection of the administration, but despite the police protection we have been harassed by the goons,” she wrote. 

The letter from the SC Commission dated November last year too, is consequential in this respect. 

The letter dated November 21, 2014, mentions that the commission had ordered the commissioner of Faridabad to normalise the situation in the Sunped village. 

It also said that efforts to bring back the Dalit families who had fled the village needed to be resettled and that more force needed to be stationed for their protection. 

Documents reveal the police in turn replied to the commission in December 2014, guaranteeing the protection of the Dalit families.

The affected family had been accorded the protection of six police personnel along with a PCR and two riders for increased surveillance, the letter said. 

Two-and-a-half year old Vaibhav and 11-month-old Divya died after their house was set on fire by members of an upper caste community late last Monday. 

They were rushed to Safdarjung Hospital where doctors declared them dead as both children had suffered 60-70 percent burns. 

Their mother Rekha, 23, was critical but had regained consciousness on Wednesday

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal desperately wants the cops, and he’s doing something about it. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal desperately wants the cops, and he’s doing something about it. Reviewed by Ajit Kumar on 8:38 PM Rating: 5

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