Corona Curfew: Police Shouldn’t Use Force, Except in Self-Defence

The coronavirus pandemic has brought about drastic changes all over, and has thrown unprecedented challenges to police, law enforcement agencies, and the warriors who are fighting this menace. PM Modi announced a lockdown of 21 days, and this period ends on 14 April 2020.

Also Read: FAQs: What is Curfew Pass & Do I Need It During COVID-19 Lockdown?

Special Skills Required by Police Under Unique Circumstances

The police, under these circumstances, have a very difficult and an uphill task to perform. This is, by no means, an easy task, because the job that is before the police is unprecedented. The police, yes, have imposed and are trained to impose curfews, regulate traffic, and other police functions.

But this function is unique in the sense that this unprecedented lockdown requires special training, special management, and special mind skills, brain skills, and heart skills.

Never in the history of the nation has the nation been locked down for 21 days, but this is a compulsion that we all must face, and the police need to put their best foot forward under these circumstances. By and large, the police have done exceptionally well; there were hiccups and glitches and naturally so, these things do happen; under these extraordinary circumstances. The first was the ignorance of law; the section that I would like to bring to the notice of everyone is, the law invoked against the defaulters in the course of the lockdown are covered under the provisions of Epidemic Diseases Act Section 2, IPC Sec 269-270; Disaster Management Act, Section 51 B; Section 188 of CRPC of the violation of Section 144 of CRPC. By and large, the police all over have been proactive, have been people-friendly, but there have been isolated cases of police personnel going overboard, becoming overzealous, giving bizarre punishments, and this is unacceptable.

Also Read: Coronavirus Lockdown: Some Cops Lathicharged, Others Served Needy

(Dr Vikram Singh is an Indian educationist and retired Indian Police Service officer. He joined the IPS in 1974, and held the post of Director General of Police in the state of Uttar Pradesh during the period June 2007- September 2009. He tweets at @VikramSingh112. This is an opinion piece, and the views expressed are the author’s own. The Quint neither endorses, nor is responsible for them.)

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