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Punjab to make police functioning more transparent

Special Correspondent

Photo: AFP

Honoured:Punjab Governor Shivraj Patil along with Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal presenting an award to Captain Bobby D. Denham of Los Angeles Sheriff Department in Amritsar on Tuesday.

AMRITSAR: Punjab's Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal said on Tuesday that by the end of this month under its ambitious programme “Sanjh” (partnership) the State Government would begin the process of setting up 479 ‘suvidha' (facilitation) centres that would provide public ownership in police services.

He hoped that the initiative to make police functioning more transparent and accountable to the people would soon be replicated across the country.

Mr. Badal was speaking at the Global conference on citizen-centric police station reforms organised here by the Institute for Development and Communication (IDC) in collaboration with the Punjab Police. The IDC is the Indian partner in the Geneva-based Altus Global alliance which has been organising Police Station Visitors' Week (PSVW) since 2006. Representatives of 16 countries participated in the deliberations.

Mr. Badal said that after the dark days of terrorism it was necessary to change the mind-set about policing in Punjab. He also dwelt upon efforts to upgrade the infrastructural and logistic capacity of the police to deal with the changing security needs of the people. He said that after the ‘suvidha' centres are set up and linked through state-of-the-art IT platform, citizens would not have to visit police stations as most of the routine services would be accessible over the Internet.

Awards presented

After distributing awards to police stations from various countries which had received top grades during the recent PSVW, Punjab Governor Shivraj Patil said the conference was the “real” fruit of globalisation. He emphasised the need to improve the police-population ratio, increase in number of police stations, recruit more women into the security forces and set up mobile police stations.

Mr. Patil said while there is an urgent need to reverse a mind-set that providing security to the public is not a productive activity by the government, the public too should be enlightened about the legal remedies and limitations. He said that under the ever-changing global order there is need for cooperation among citizens, NGOs and private sector to ensure holistic public welfare.

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