Two SHOs at a police station are better than one. Delhi's top cops are toying with this idea after studying their counterparts in Mumbai.
Sources told Mail Today that to improve policing in the city, the Amulya Patnaik-led Delhi Police recently sent a deputy commissioner-rank officer to the financial capital to study the functioning of the police department there. His findings are now being scrutinised by top cops.
Sources added that the first thing that has been picked up from the initial analysis is the rotation system of the station house officers (SHOs). Mumbai Police have two senior inspectors who work on rotating basis.
A senior police officer close to the analysis team said, "To implement the idea of two SHOs, Delhi Police need one more inspector-rank officer at each police station, or the inspectors already posted there but assigned other work could do the job of being the station in-charge alternately. At present, there are three inspector-rank officers at every police station-SHO, Inspector Investigation and Anti-Terrorist Officer."
COULD CURB CORRUPTION
Experts believe that the planned system will also help curb police corruption.
"If there will be two SHOs who will work in shifts, the workload on either of them would be far less than a single SHO spending 24 hours at a police station. It will increase the manpower and most importantly both inspectors will be able to focus on investigations," a joint commissioner-rank officer told Mail Today.
According to Delhi Police data, the department last year failed to solve around 73.29 per cent of the total cases registered. Under the present system, if the SHO goes on leave, the work is handed over to either the Inspector Investigation or Anti-Terrorist Officer based on seniority. In case the SHO feels that neither of the officers is capable of handling the responsibility, the incharge of another police station is asked to take on the additional task.
SHOs IN FAVOUR OF IDEA
Mail Today spoke to many station house officers about the idea of shift-based duty and most of them backed it. "We are bound to stay at the police station 24 hours a day and many times it adds to frustration," said one of them, requesting anonymity. "We are unable to spend time with our families. Also, a large number of cases are reported every day and due to the volume, we are unable to concentrate on the investigation."
However, former police chief Neeraj Kumar believes that having two SHOs at a police station will only lead to confusion. "One SHO is enough to deliver what is expected of him or her," he told Mail Today.