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Cabinet approves cyber highway for linking India’s police stations

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The Cabinet approved an ambitious INR 2 crore three-year project to link India's 14,000 police stations via a cyber highway to improve connectivity and increase crime fighting abilities.

'The project aims at creating a comprehensive and integrated system for enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of policing at the police station level through adoption of e-governance, and creation of a nationwide networked infrastructure for an IT-enabled state-of-the-art tracking system for investigation of crime and detection of criminals in real time,' Home Minister P. Chidambaram said.

'This is a critical requirement in the context of the present day internal security scenario,' he told reporters after a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The Crime and Criminal Tracking Network & Systems (CCTNS) project would be initiated by the Home ministry and implemented by the National Crime Records Bureau, the minister added.

'The broad objectives of the CCTNS project are streamlining investigation and prosecution processes, strengthening of intelligence gathering machinery, improved public delivery system and citizen-friendly interface, nationwide sharing of information across on crime and criminals and improving efficiency and effectiveness of police functioning,' Chidambaram said.

It will also:

* Facilitate collection, storage, retrieval, analysis, transfer and sharing of data and information among police stations, district and state headquarters and other organisation and agencies, including those at the central government level,

* Help in enabling and assisting senior police officers in better management of the police force,

* Keep track of the progress of the crime and criminal investigation and prosecution of cases, including progress of cases in court, and

* Help in reducing manual and redundant record keeping.

Among the e-services citizens can expect from CCTNS are filing of complaints, obtaining the status of complaints/ cases registered at police stations, obtaining copies of first information reports (FIR), autopsy reports and other permissible documents, Chidambaram said.

'The project is to be implemented in a manner where the major role would lie with the state governments in order to bring in the requisite stakes, ownership and commitment.

'Only certain core components would be in the hands of the central government, apart from the required review and monitoring of project implementation on a continuing basis,' Chidambaram pointed out.

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