Police Vs. Naxals
Bihar Police in for major image-related reshuffle
Keen to improve the image of Bihar Police, the state’s Director General of Police, Ashish Ranjan Sinha, has announced plans for a major image rebuilding exercise that could involve reshuffling officers to make the law enforcement force more effective.
Sinha is presiding over a meeting of the Zonal Inspector Generals of Police and Deputy Inspector Gernerals of Police to plan the transfer of police personnel, who have been posted at a place for more than three years. The meeting is also expected to discuss the promotion for capable officials.
The police administration believes that the reshuffle will make the police force more effective in dealing with crime control.
“Zonal IGs and DIGs are meeting today to discuss the transfer of police officials, who have been posted at a place for more than three years. It is an effort to transform the police force for better. Police force is effective even now but we are trying to make it more effective,” said Sinha.
The police force has been one of the principal targets of Naxalite groups in Bihar.Naxalite violence has claimed the lives of 28 Bihar policemen In 2005 alone. In 2002, according to Bihar police sources, a total of 104 persons, including 19 Naxalites, six police personnel and 79 civilians, were killed in Naxal violence, while in 2001, 121 persons were killed, which included 14 Naxalites, 24 police personnel and 83 civilians.
Lack of resources including sophisticated weapons, modern equipment, other infrastructure and the absence of a proper mechanism to train and motivate police personnel are some of the reasons for police vulnerability.. Unfortunately, despite the repeated attacks, no attempt has been made by the state government to formulate a comprehensive anti-Naxal policy and equip the police force with modern weapons.
The secretary of the Bihar Policemen’s Association (BPMA), K K Jha, claims that the police force does not even have sophisticated weapons to take on the Naxalites. Despite several reminders, the Government has not provided the latest weapons to the police to take on the ultras particularly in the Naxal-hit areas.
Jha alleged that 70 per cent of the personnel still carry World War II-vintage rifles, which are no match to the sophisticated weapons and explosives of the Naxalite groups.
Even after change of guard in the State Government, the number of crimes in Bihar remains the same.
The top brass in the State police department are passing sleepless nights as the law and order problem has turned to be a major challenge for the new State Government.