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Antiquated police law to be critically examined
September 01, 2005 14:06 IST
Last Updated: September 01, 2005 21:49 IST
In view of major changes in the role of policing, the government on Thursday said that it will 'critically examine' the nearly 150-year-old pre-Independence law governing the country's police and explore the need for a new act.
"Time has come to critically examine the Indian Police Act, 1861 as to what extent it is meeting the requirement of present-day policing and the need for a new police act," Home Minister Shivraj Patil told the first-ever National Conference of Superintendents of Police, being attended by over 350 district police chiefs.
Focussing his attention on yet another key area, Patil said the government will 'vigorously enforce' the law of the land against human rights' violations by police personnel.
Observing that gender sensitisation of police had to be given due attention, Patil said the number of women was also increasing in the force and 'our policy is to reach at least 10 per cent in the next few years'. The home minister, who spoke on major aspects of policing, said physcial fitness also needed 'urgent attention'.
Giving the example of physical fitness being a 'pre-condition' for promotion in para-military forces, Patil said 'such provisions for other police forces will do them good in discharging their duties and in acheiving greater happiness in their personal lives'.
The conference is held after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh stressed on improving grassroot governance and interacted with collectors and district magistates in May.
Patil also said the government would make 'concerted efforts' to ensure that equipment, mobility and communication systems keep pace with latest developments.
Observing that the country was faced with complexity and multiplicity of security challenges, Intelligence Bureau Chief E S L Narasimhan, who also addressed the gathering, asked senior police officers to upgrade intelligence machinery at the ground level to ensure 'intelligence-led policing'.
"The administrative apparatus today is under increasing strain, trying to contain threats that are not entirely local in as much as these do not honour administrative divides and draw support from external sources, both state and non-state," he said.
To deal with the new challenges, the security forces need fresh approaches and must work in cooperation with the full range of potential partners in the society, he said, adding 'our responses must be adaptive and dynamic in full recognition of the economic, social, ideological and geo-political nature of the challenges'.
Noting that in today's atmosphere an attack on a VIP was intended to cause national destabilisation by way of a backlash, Narasimhan said there was a need to pay extra attention the matter. Similarly the newly emerging non-conventional threats to internal security, having an impact on the country as it emerged as a major global economic power also needed to be addressed, he said.
Among others who attended the function were Ministers of State for Home S Regupathy and Manirao Gavit and Union Home Secretary V K Duggal.