This volume is a first hand account of the observations, impressions and experiences of the author as an insider. Naturally, most illustrations in this volume are from Karnataka police where the author served at senior levels for nearly three decades. However, this makes no difference to the over all picture of India as situation is not much different elsewhere. As far as Karnataka police is concerned, in spite of misdeeds of notorious scoundrels like S.K.Bannerji, R.S.Chopra, A.R.Nizamuddin and degenerates of the similar ilk, situation is better there than some of the more notorious state police organizations of India. The core weakness in Karnataka police lies in sweepingly conforming to the putrid system and bad culture against conscience to cover own tracks. It is mere cowardice of mediocrity and gross selfish interests of ignobility and nothing more. Yet, no way can Karnataka police be called as an efficient, healthy and responsible bureaucratic setup yet.
Faithfulassessmentmustprecedereconstruction.Thisvolumeisaneffortin thisdirection.Complacencyleadstostagnationandisadangerousindulgencein a rottensituationlikeIndia’s.Thisvolumeisintendedtobreachthevicious indulgenceinvolvedandinspireIndiatoitsrichpotentialitiesonthewaytomuch dreamedofworldleadership.
Indiaisacivilizationofdiversitiesandacultureofcontradictions.India’sis aninclusivewayoflife.Alongitslonghistory,itsawumpteenfallsandrises without losing its innate vitality and always rose from worst quagmires unscathed.ThisresilienceofIndiaunderscoresitsuniqueheritagespawnedbyits thoughtsandphilosophiesthatperhapsarenearesttothetruenatureofthe universethatthescientificworldoftodayisengagedintoprobe,discoverand formulateastheGrandUnificationTheory(GUT).Thisisthesecretofthe eternalstrengthofIndia.
Thisresilience of India gives hope. The present fall is not forever. Time of revivalshallcome.Indiashallseeabettersystemreplacethepresentcorruptand incompetent UPSCandahealthyadministrativesystemreplacetheextant inefficientandroguebureaucracy.
Born in Mangalore as the eldest son of Shree R.D.Suvarna and B.Sarojini Praveen Kumar graduated in Science from St. Aloysius College, Mangalore, going on to obtain a post-graduate degree in Literature from Mysore University. He also holds post-graduate diplomas in Business Management and Cooperation. In his student days he was also a prize-winning orator and writer. He lives in Bangalore with his wife, Smt. Jayashree and son Pratheek. He is a familiar face in national seminars and TV networks in India as a Poet and thinker.
The Hong Kong-based Political & Economic Risk Consultancy (PERC) in a 12-page report on a business survey of 12 economies of Asia released on June 3, 2009 where 1,274 expatriates working in these countries were interviewed showed Indian bureaucracy at the bottom at the 12 position as the least efficient bureaucracy after Philippines and Indonesia in 10 and 11 positions respectively. The report says that working with the country’s civil servants in India is a “slow and painful” process and it continues to report that “They are a power centre in their own right at both the national and state levels, and are extremely resistant to reform that affects them or the way they go about their duties”.
The cause of the malady in reference to Indian Police is analysed and remedies are recommended in the article, ‘The Crumbling Steel frame of India’ of this volume. The deterioration is a post-independence phenomenon. The once steel frame of Indian bureaucracy of the British vintage gradually crumbled to its extant putridity under the sad auspice of corrupt and incompetent UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) and the deterioration trickled fast downwards in the last six decades to bring India to this sad state of affairs.
As far as Karnataka police is concerned, in spite of misdeeds of notorious scoundrels like R.S.Chopra, A.R.Nizamuddin and degenerates of the similar ilk in Karnataka police, situation is better there than some of the more notorious state police organizations of India. Their core weakness there lies in sweepingly conforming to the rotten system and bad culture against conscience to cover own tracks. It is mere cowardice of mediocrity and gross selfish interests of ignobility and nothing more. Yet, no way can Karnataka police be called as an efficient, healthy and responsible bureaucratic setup yet.
Faithful assessment must precede reconstruction. This volume is an effort in this direction. Complacency leads to stagnation and is a dangerous indulgence in a rottening situation like India’s. This volume is intended to breach the vicious indulgence involved and inspire India to its rich potentialities on the way to much dreamed of world leadership.
India is a civilization of diversities and a culture of contradictions. India’s is an inclusive way of life. Along its long history, it saw umpteen falls and rises without losing its innate vitality and always rose from worst quagmires unscathed. This resilience of India underscores its unique heritage spawned by its thoughts and philosophies that perhaps are nearest to the true nature of the universe that the scientific world of today is engaged in to probe, discover and formulate as the Grand Unification Theory (GUT). This is the secret of the eternal strength of India.
This resilience of India gives hope. The present fall is not forever. Time of revival shall come. India shall see a better system replace the present corrupt and incompetent UPSC and a healthy administrative system replace the extant inefficient and rogue bureaucracy. This volume, “Indian Police” is a small attempt towards this beginning.
Professional ideals of police are rooted in the terra firma of the rule of law, justice, order and the security of the country and its citizens. Police organization is basically responsible to the constitution of the country and the government constituted and the laws enacted in accordance with the constitution. Police lose its relevance to the country when its professional attitude goes against the cardinal ideals of the profession.
It is India’s good fortune that its fabric of law and order has withstood the effects of growing complexity of the Indian society for so fragile is its policing. The fact that the police systems in a few neighboring countries of Asia and Africa are worse cannot be a solace as the political, social and economical structures of those countries have different backgrounds and value systems from ours. India is a crucible wherein the dynamics and relevance of democracy in the third world are being experimented with.
Crime, politics and the police are the three sides of the vicious triangle within which the future of democratic Indian and its free people are trapped. Although wealthy industrial and commercial houses form a fourth dimension, their techniques are as yet limited to manipulative strategies to gain a strangle hold over political power by remote control. It is their wealth that fills the coffers of the troika and helps reduce the normal life of free citizens to a welter of uncertainties and endless misery.
The very nature of the functions of the police demands that it be insulated from the vagaries of the short-time rules of a democratic setup. Their responsibilities as enforcers of law warrant their allegiance exclusively to the rules and laws of the country; they are beholden to the judiciary as the investigating authority while their part as watchdogs of the country’s internal security raises them above political and leadership bickerings. Often, these aspects of the police are happily forgotten in India.
Discipline, in the case of the police force, is both an advantage and a disadvantage. It is an advantage because, if discreetly employed, it can prevent undue interaction of the police with unwanted elements. It is disadvantage because the police, with its trained response, may find it difficult to isolate itself from the behests of its political masters.
Loyalty is of two kinds. One is pure and simple fidelity to the master. The other owes its allegiance to certain ideals and principles. This implies allegiance to one’s duties, responsibilities, objectives, profession and the chosen path of life. This commitment raises their loyalty to the status of a mission. The loyalty needed in a profession like that of the police is of elevated nature and it bestows the qualities of nobility and dignity on the organisation. It lifts the police above factional interests and gives them a cosmopolitan vitality. The strength and the trust born out of this superior form of loyalty stand the police force in good stead in its hour of risk and crisis.
It is a fact that an organised effort is on in Indian police to force its members to fall in with its line of profile at the cost of individual brilliance and creative height. Indian police are continuously starved of freshness and creative innovations as the result of shutting itself to the creative sparks and other precious attributes of its human resources. Such a wastage of available human resources can occur only in a government setup of a developing country like India. What surprises is the extent to which the organisation goes to nip in bud excellences to perpetuate the interests of its old, secure world of unquestioning servilitude down the line.
In an age of sabotage and terrorism, no man, no place and no structure are really safe; no time of the day or night can be construed as safe. With the increasing complexity of human society with increasing claims on the limited resources of the world, the kettle of human life is spilling over with organised hatred and violence. Terrorism has become an international phenomenon. Accrescent unemployment makes terrorism popular by giving the unemployed youth a raison d’etre for life and an ideology to pursue. The lopsided material growth of 20th century life at the cost of contentment and inner peace has endeared to man the thrills and adventures of the life that fills up his inner void.
Police deal with social ills as physicians and surgeons deal with physical ills. A surgeon incises parts of the body to set right wrongs and remove dangerous growths from the system to save a person while a police do the same for the society. Police job like the works of a surgeon involves administration of bitter potions, prescription of restrictions and incisions to lay foundation for a sturdy system. Like medical profession, policing is a highly responsible function and ergo needs to be bound by moral ethos as lex non scripta to avoid misuse of special rights involved in discharge of duties. Both professions involve independent decisions in handling each case and exercise of infrangible conscience in doing justice to it.
In a blinkered system like ours, where power and wealth are the ultimate virtues, where power and wealth in themselves stimulate mutual growth to the exclusion of all other dimensions of life, it is no wonder, the people of this poor country succumb to the trappings of power and wealth at the cost of all virtues, values, pride, dignity and human decency. In an increasingly competitive and complex world where every day more mouths are added to share limited resources, where the principle of the survival of the fittest operates to its immane logical end and where the basic needs of survival and decency can be assured only with power and wealth, people naturally go all out to ramp the ladder of power and wealth by whatever means and cost. In the process, justice and morality become casualties and criminality raises its ugly head as an instrument to achieve otherwise impossible objects. This is how politics and crime knit together in the fabric of Indian public life.
Justice begotten at a cost is justice lost. The fact is lost sight of by the present administration of justice. Justice is a natural right. It is the sine qua non and raison d’etre of social grouping. Justice in a social environment has to be as natural as sleep or oxygen to a living being. Free and fair justice is the leges legum of human rights. The proficiency of justice administration has to be assayed with this litmus test and the role of the police in the system has to be judged by its contributions to this goal of the justice administration system.
Reasons for this deterioration are many. The first is inherent lack of passion for quality and excellence. The agency in charge of selections, the Union Public Service Commission, is manned by people unequal for the task either in their professionalism, efficiency, passion for brilliance or basic character. How can the process be reversed?
Justice in its basic sense necessitates an integral vision. Justice abstracted from its environment, past, present, future, diverse issues, dramatis personae and related events cannot be justice in the true sense of the word. Justice in parts is no justice that lasts. Justice involves delving deep down to the heart of an issue and delivering justice in reference to all related issues and matters to the rightful entitlement of all. This presupposes a passion for objectivity and justness and above all, selflessness in the arbitrators of justice as well as in those who are in the service of the administration of justice.
Police is not an odd-job boy of the government. It is not the hand-maid of politicians in or out of power. Police is an organisaion of professionals committed to the safety, security and well-being of the country. Justice and rule of law are the litmus tests available to achieve the ends. Once police miss the bus of justice and the rule of law, their goals of safety, security and well-being of the public remain a distant dream. They lose the credibility and respect of the public, so essential for effective and proficient policing.
In the wilderness of undefined roads, Indian police grope for perspicacious directions to reach professional ends. Popular phrases like maintenance of order, enforcement of law, prevention of crime, investigation of offences, protection of security interests etc are too generic terms to carry any meaning and significance during the process of actual policing. Perficient policing is possible only in the ambience of well-rounded and clearly defined specific guidelines for action that help moulding professional attitude in the organisation. Police develop wrong attitudes in its absence by erroneous interpretation of the situation around. This is what happens to Indian police now: wrong attitudes and concomitant confusion about performing legitimate duties.
Overhauling the present mediocre Union Public Service Commission to create an efficient and responsible set-up capable of handling the enormous responsibilities under Article 320 of the Indian Constitution, is essential in order to arrest the degeneration that has set in, in the set-up. This has led to blunders in identifying talent and in managing the Civil Services.
A police organisation, open to public pressures can do no policing worth the name. The very idea of being receptive to pressures and interference indicates a lack of will for objectivity and justice. It is criminal elements which cultivate sources that have put the policing on the wrong rails. Pressure often forces the police to commit crimes under the veil of authority, either by protecting criminals or more dangerously, by replacing them with innocent people as criminals. The possibility of the police being open to the influence of the rich and powerful deprives it of its credibility. A police force that works at the behest of the rich and powerful can guard their interests only. Does democratic India need such a police force that allows tyranny of the poor and the helpless by the rich and powerful?
A major handicap of the extant Indian police is its dependence syndrome. No more, Indian police realise itself as a master sui juris. For every piece of work under its sphere of decision, it looks for advice, guidance and direction from the political leadership, bureaucracy or the judiciary. It is more a symptom of immanent servilitude and lack of spine than anything else. Present Indian police suffers from lack of hardihood of professionalism and the self-confidence ensues from it.
A profession like police naturally has its own goals, objectives and ideals to pursue. They get clouded in the smog of practical turn-arounds in the field and ultimately lose their edge in the spin of attitudinal aberrations. The consequence is clashes of loyalties, adoption of immodest vectors in policing, the issue of excesses and inactions, tendency to bend rules and laws to achieve perceived ends in the hour of need of upholding the rule of law, urge to cash-in on the ignorance and weaknesses of the ignorant people around and indulgences in unprofessional works in the name of discharging legitimate police duties. Performance of any profession depends upon three factors: professional ideals, job culture and actual practices and procedures.
The British were the forefathers of the unified Indian Police. It was a force that met the needs of the time. In an age of rapid changes, the opening up of new vistas and dimensions to life through inventions and discoveries in science and technology, nothing remains constant. The scope, design and objects of the Indian police underwent a metamorphosis with the transfer of government to native hands. The process spawned a phenomenon in which undemanding aspects of both the worlds survived to create a new police culture. The distinguishing traits of the Indian police of the British period such as objectivity, apoliticism, commitment, discipline, quality and high standards were discarded. Traditional Indian values such as a simplicity, charity, wisdom, mutual, respect, and human qualities were given up too. The convenient factors of the old and new worlds were chosen to create a new police culture while demands on policing were at the crucial stage in the recent years of independence.
The UPSC in its perverted competence has created a new breed of administrators in the police and other administrative classes. This new breed is interested in nothing beyond meretricious schemes for promoting its career interests. They only think of more perks, creating new posts to improve avenues of promotion and fighting for parity with other services. Thoughts about how the schemes would affect the police structure in the long run never bother these people. Newspapers carry report of how promptly and actively regional and central IPS associations respond to all the decisions touching their career. We never hear these associations taking up any cause in matters purely professional- law and order, security or crime investigation. The matters are left to the care of those down the line.
The police in a democracy are the watchdog of the democracy. Democracy basically being the rule of the hoi polloi, clash of interests therein is an expected feature. In an atmosphere of self-rule by the self-centered people of the present commercial world, a machinery to show peoples their limits and punish devious elements is sine qua non. The police form the master-axle that runs this vital engine of the administration. It being the ultimate executors of the laws, rules and regulations that form the chemistry of a rule of law, whatever are the other attributes of an administration, its efficiency, quality and success tout a fait depend upon the merits of the police.
Police leadership is meant to face the reality, assess it, plan with foresight and vision and accordingly remold the system and the organisation. It must set the lead by right job culture. It is here that Police leadership failed. No political boss or executive head from outside can do the job for him for the simple reason that policing is an extremely specialized job and no outsider can have a keek to the intricacies of the Police and policing job.
The extant police ensemble is marked by lack of human concerns and empathy for the fellow men. This has deprived the elements of heart and compassion from the body of the bureaucracy. Initiatives, novel ideas and creative pursuits are seen as the antithesis of the police. This has deprived the elements of brain and intellect from the corpus of the police system. The result is a deadweight-police weighing down on the live India and sucking it dry with evils and misuse of the powers invested on it for governing and steering the country ahead.
What is required is highly intricate organizational policy imbued with specialized skills and insight of the highest order to inspire, motivate and get the most out of the manpower at disposal. This involves balancing many contradictions inherent in the human psyche. On the one hand, the police force has to preserve its professional pride; on the other, it has to be taught to accommodate in its character the instinct to obey. It has to be tuned to be faithful to authority while its ultimate loyalty must rest with its professional objectives and the rule of law.
What the Indian police inspire in the public is fear and hatred, not trust, respect and love. This is the greatest single failing of the Indian police. A police force feared and hated is irrelevant in a democracy. The argument that fears are a necessary constituent in policing is not based on the right understanding of human psychology. The police do stand on a different footing from the general public but that status is based on trust, respect, love and a healthy awe, not, fear and hatred. It is healthy awe that inspires in citizens genuine cooperation and willing subjection to police authority.
The situation can be salvaged by clearing the cobwebs. There is a bunch of self-motivated officers in key positions in the police who have contributed to the downslide of the Indian police in the post-democratic era. They have corrupted the police atmosphere, set wrong precedents, encouraged self-indulgence eroded its tough image and reduced it to its present cadaverous existence. These elements should be sidelined to make way for men of probity to refurbish and rebuild the setup.
The future of India depends upon the strengths and weaknesses of its police. Defence forces are relevant to the existence of India in so much as defending its borders and protecting its system of government. But the relevance of the police is more meaningful, for, here, the very existence of India as a nation is at stake. The significance of the police is often forgotten somewhere between the width of civil administration and the depth of the defence forces.
Policemen are social doctors and policing is a surgical operation of the society to systematically remove cancerous growths from its body. What if the band of doctors itself is infested with serious cancerous growths? This is the position of the present-day Indian police.
INDIAN POLICE, AN OUTSTANDING BOOK - by shreenivas in BARNS & NOBLE WEBSITE
"Indian Police" authored by indomitable professional of 31 years from the Indian Police is an outstanding book of character, talent and conviction with in-depth analyses, brilliant conclusions and shrewd recommendations derived from first hand observations from close quarters for nearly three decades in the Indian Police.
The book crowns the author's literary voyage of more than a dozen published books, several dozens of articles published in almost all reputed national newspapers of India and participation in scores of national seminars and television programmes of India.
This book stands out for its objectivity in discussing the topics it focuses on and the honesty and forthrightness with which performs the job.
It calls certain rogue elements of Karnataka Police as scoundrels and places the burden of existing sad state of affairs of the Indian Police squarely on the back of such bad elements and characters in Indian Police in addition to the corrupt and incompetent UPSC or the Union Public Service Commission, a constitutional agency responsible for selection of those rogue elements to government jobs in India.
Any way, this book is an immensely readable treasure-house of information and insight to the Indian Police with an abundance of stunning illustrations and revelations from the field of Indian Police in general and Karnataka Police in particular. This is also an excellent source book for Police planners, professionals and researchers on police subjects.