Citizens of Uttar Pradesh will soon see a better equipped and more responsive police force, claims Debasish Panda, Principal Secretary, Home, Govt of Uttar Pradesh, in an interaction with Nirav Soni of Elets News Network (ENN)
What are the major steps taken for smooth functioning of the Home Department?
Safety, security and reduction in crime rate in Uttar Pradesh are of utmost importance. We are undertaking lots of initiatives, especially for modernising the police force of Uttar Pradesh, including state-wide Dial 100 system, CCTNS (Crime and Criminal Tracking Network System), Smart City Surveillance Project and Dial 1090 – a Women Helpline. We are also scaling up our infrastructure to match the requirements of our police force. We are equipping our police force with all technical tools required to cope up the requirements of safety and security, apart from arms and ammunitions.
Give us some details about CCTNS. CCTNS is a flagship project that we are implementing.
This project will enable the citizens to file their complaints and First Information Reports (FIR) online. We are setting up a time frame of rolled all these out across all the 1,456 police stations in Uttar Pradesh. There were certain hiccups initially, especially with respect to connectivity and resource constraints, but the same is now being sorted out. We hope that this entire project would be fully operational in the next six months.
What exactly is the department doing for modernising the police force?
Modernising our police force is an ambitious project of our government. We have piloted a few projects in four districts – Lucknow, Kanpur, Allahabad and Ghaziabad – where we have set up modern police control rooms. The citizen has to dial just one number 100 for any police service. Police will reach the place of occurrence within a time limit of 5-7 minutes.
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For this, we will deploy GPS facility in vehicles. The complainant has to simply call, and the officer concerned will understand the problem sitting in the control room. These officers ask the caller the details in 30-40 seconds and the location where the call has come from. Once the location is zeroed in, the details are passed on to the despatched officers. The officer sitting on the system will find out the nearest vehicle located in the area and will send the mobile van to the location where the person is in distress.
The whole idea is to reach police service in the minimum possible time. The whole system is technology based. Going by the success of this initiative in the four pilot districts, we will take it to other parts of the State and have state-wide Dial 100 service. We will have a centralised call centre located in Lucknow, where all calls will land and be received. I personally believe that once this initiative is fully functional, there would be significant reduction in crime rate. This will help us in better law and order maintenance across the State.
Tell us about the Smart City Surveillance Project.
This is also a major initiative that we are now going ahead with. We are developing a smart city surveillance system in major 16 cities in Uttar Pradesh and will install Closed- Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras. The project is being proposed for final approval. This system will have an inbuilt Video Management Software (VMS) with analytics. We will have these cameras installed at all major traffic signals across the system with an in-built of ability to analyse the number plates of vehicles for tracking the wrong doers. This will surely help in nabbing criminals and creating fear among the wrong-doers on the road. We will have a fully functional electronic eye established across the city and to give safe and secure environment in the city.
Traffic management is also a major problem. How do you plan to deal with it?
Apart from the CCTV-based surveillance systems, we are also proposing to have Traffice Management Centres in the 16 major cities, which will be gradually scaled up to other cities across the State. We are going to have more number of traffic signals installed with surveillance enforcement cameras. These Centres will do a realtime monitoring of the traffic, also known as Intelligent Traffic Management System. The signal timing would be adjusted as per traffic volumes and synchronised in such a manner that there would be a smooth flow of traffic across the city. The traffic law violations as well as booking of defaulters will be done in an electronic mode. Automatically electronic challans will be generated for the road rule violators, and they will have to go to the respective local courts and pay the fine.
What is ‘Dial 1090 – Women Power Line’ project?
This is a very effective tool to provide safety and security to the women, particularly to young girls. This project has been a great success, as we have received more than 15 lakh calls since its launch in 2012. Also, we have received over 3 lakh congratulatory calls from across the State for fast resolution of their grievances. We also have developed and implemented a mobile application. A commuter travelling in a public transport, if teased or harassed, has to simply dial 1090. An instant alert reaches police and family members of the caller. The call is traced, site located and appropriate action is taken.
What are the other services in pipeline?
We want people staying in Uttar Pradesh to feel safe and secure. We want to launch a host of citizencentric services. Citizens are demanding a variety of services like verification of servants working in a household, information about travellers coming from outside the State, verification of employees working in an industrial unit or a company, passport verification and many others. We do not want citizens to travel to police stations or other offices to avail the services. We propose to provide the requested services through mobile applications. We are also receiving complaints regarding stolen or lost documents like passports, driving licence, important certificates, PAN Cards, etc.
We are also in the process of launching mobile application for receiving complaints on lost documents. Bank Security and other installations are also a concern and we are trying to tackle the same. Gradually we will be launching a number of services through mobile applications. So, in the next couple of years, one would experience a major change as far as the police establishment and its modernisation is concerned. I am sure that citizens of the State will soon experience a much improved, responsive and sensitive police force, and we will be able to curb and control crime, maintain law and order, and reach a person in trouble in the shortest possible time.