By Arun Srivastava
Economic development is a broader concept than economic growth. Development reflects social and economic progress. Peace and trust in the police are the two principle indices for growth which is imperative and vital for development, which is about removing obstacles to greater freedom.
The extent to which a country or a state has developed can be assessed by considering a range of indicators, primarily per capita income, life expectancy, education, extent of poverty and trust in the law and order machinery. The Law and Order Index is a composite score based on people’s confidence in their police and their feelings of personal safety.
Law and Order Index have a wide bearing. It seeks to know do you have confidence in the local police force. A society consistently facing the threat of violence is bound to suffer immense.
Bihar chief minister has been eternally claiming of growth and development in the state having a super class policing. But it is not to be seen on the ground. True enough only a week back Nitish had expressed concern over more than 1.40 lakh cases pending for investigation in the state and stressed the need for changes in the Bihar Police Manual to make the system ideal and effective. He directed the state police top brass to get global positioning system (GPS) installed in all police patrol cars and identify the people behind the notorious bikers’ gangs creating law & order problems in the state capital.
Interestingly while reviewing the law and order situation in the state the Director General of Police, Gupteshwar Pandey had observed that Patna and Muzaffarpur were the crime capitals in the state. He revealed that out of over 1.40 lakh criminal cases pending for investigation at 1,066 police stations across the state, around 1,000 cases alone were at the Kotwali police station in Patna.
Not a single day passes out when one or two persons are murdered in the state. Robberies and extortions are the common crimes. Some ten years back the Supreme Court had observed to separate wings for investigation and maintenance of law & order at police stations and subdivisions, but so far Nitish has initiated any move in this direction, though at that time he had shown quite keenness for implementing the directive.
While Nitish claims of improving the law and order in the state and injecting confidence in the common man, the fact remains that most of the police stations utterly lack basic infrastructure. Strange enough the issue of ensuring timely installation of CCTV cameras, land to the police stations functioning from rented buildings and toilets for women in all police stations in the state were discussed only a week back. So far these were not on the agenda of the “sushasan” government.
The state police has been of the habit of watering down the cases and adopting a conciliatory approach towards the criminals was clearly evident from his assertion at the police meet not to make any compromises as regards law and order. In this back drop the question arises if he was aware of this fact then why did not he take stern actions against such officials and why he left the situation to drift?
The extent to which law and order situation has deteriorated could be judged from the assertion of Gupteshwar Pandey, DGP of Bihar, at the meet, “The police manual needs to be changed, every police station will have two additional SHO, one will look after law and order and the other will only look after investigation. We are going to start the orientation program to improve SHO attitude and behaviour.”
Obviously the question arises why Bihar’s Law and Order Situation is in Shambles Under ‘Sushasan Babu’s (Nitish Kumar) Rule? In this backdrop his claim to growth and prosperity are simply an eye wash. Incidentally during last fortnight a number of traders and businessmen were either waylaid and looted or murdered by the criminals. Though captains of industry are reluctant to speak out openly they concede doing business is gradually becoming an arduous task in the state.
If one looks at various crime related incidents during the last one year it is explicit that the law and order situation is at a very low level in the state at the moment. There are numerous instances of crimes against women, abduction, extortion and murder. Incidents of rape and murder of women are increasing.
Primarily there are two reasons for the increasing crime, first, police being in complicity with the criminals do not intend to take against them. This is evident from the cases pending at the police stations as revealed by DGP. The second reason is the connivance of the police with the people at power. Take the case of Muzaffarpur shelter house case. The involvement of the politicians and police in the crime is so acute and deep that even the CBI is finding it tough to thoroughly probe the case in which many girls are suspected to have been killed. It seems that anti-social elements have been enjoying free run. (IPA Service)