Ranchi: One policeman for a thousand people, six chief ministers in eight years, rich in minerals but poor in tackling Maoists menace-yes this is the state of affairs in Indian state Jharkhand.
With such a poor police-public ratio, policing in Jharkhand has become more a formality than a necessity.
Compared to the police-public ratio of 1:480 in Haryana or 1: 450 in Kolkata, here's it is more than double, which comes close to one policeman handling the population of around 1,000.
What is more, even a sizeable chunk of the police personnel are deployed to take care of security of ever-burgeoning VIPs, leaving investigations of cases much to be desired.
In the wake of recent terror strikes, Ranchi also felt its tremors. A couple of prime schools in the city received hoax calls about planting of bombs, sending the police in a tizzy.
However, due to the lack of expertise and special cells like those in New Delhi, the Ranchi police could not do much to track the prank callers.
'We had detained the booth owners to extricate the clue, but could not have much from them. Had there been special cell to investigate such cases, it would have been definitely easy for the police to get hold of the callers,' Ranchi Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) MS Bhatia said.
A senior police officer said that present strength of Ranchi police is around 3,500 constables and havildars, almost the same as it was at the time of creation of the state.
'Posts of around 1,200 constables and havildars are still vacant as per the sanctioned strength of 2,000. Equally worrisome is the condition with sub-inspectors, inspectors and deputy superintend of police,' he said.
As the Ranchi police struggled to maintain general law and order and ensuring VIP security, it failed to set up specialised wings to deal with piling cases of investigations.
Unlike Patna and other similar cities, which have all the police stations manned by an inspector rank officer, Ranchi has just three inspectors for 16 police stations.
'We have to rely thoroughly on our own intelligence mechanism as we hardly receive any input from the Crime Investigation Department (CID),' another senior police officer said.
State Home Secretary Jyoti Bhramar Tubid while admitting the problem said that the state government was looking into the issue of separating law and order and investigation into two different arms of policing.
'Since it is a time taking process, we are now trying to better coordination between specialised investigation wings at the headquarter-level and the local police,' Tubid said.
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