CORRUPTION IN POLICE AT THE POLICE STATION LEVEL

CORRUPTION IN POLICE AT THE POLICE STATION LEVEL — WHAT IS HAPPENING IN INDIA ON A DAILY BASIS.

Rajendra Dhar
POLICE WATCH INDIA (Regd. NGO).

WHAT IS CORRUPTION? To study this concept it is very important to understand its meaning. Police corruption is defined as the “ABUSE OF POLICE AUTHORITY FOR PERSONAL OR ORGANISATIONAL GAIN BY A POLICE OFFICER ACTING OFFICIALLY”.

It is not an easy concept to understand and it has many complex aspects. But one aspect which stands out is its existence which is spread almost in every part of the country. Corruption can be broken down into two sections, internal and external corruption. With reference to the police department, internal corruption is the illegal acts and agreements within a police department by more than one of the officers and external corruption is the illegal acts and agreements with the public by one or more officers in a department.

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The most important elements of police corruption are misuse of authority and misuse of personal attainment. Widespread corruption at every level of the administrative department poses as a great obstacle in its working, efficiently and effectively. It inverts the goals of the organisation, that is, it may encourage and create crime rather than deter it. One of the main causes for this is that the police officials have ceased to act as professionals and are politicised to a great extent especially in the states. They are manipulated by political leaders, who misuse the power of appointments and transfers to patronise weak or corrupt officers for their own selfish purposes at the cost of public interest. These leaders appoint wrong persons for the top jobs as they are willing to carry out the dictates and wishes of their political masters for their own survival. The main areas for their interference are appointments, transfers, rewards, and punishments. General police corruption includes bribery or exchange of money or something of value between the police and the wrong doer. Other police crimes may range from brutality (both physical & verbal), illegal confinement, fake encounters, sexual harassment, custodial crimes, to illicit use of weapons.

WE HAVE A HEAP OF COMPLAINTS POURING IN WHERE THE ACCUSED ARE PURPOSELY NOT BEING ARRESTED & PRODUCED IN THE COURTS BY THE POLICE EVEN THOUGH THE POLICE IS ALWAYS FULLY AWARE OF THE FACT AS TO AT WHICH MOMENT WHICH ACCUSED IS WHERE.

Despite an attempt to eliminate corruption by ways like increased salaries, upgraded training, incentive for education, and developing policies that focus directly on factors leading to corruption, it still exists.

Police Corruption is also violation of human rights as it denies some very basic rights to the citizens. The fundamental right of being protected by a law enforcing agency, mainly constituted for this purpose is being denied by the prevailing corruption. With the present day situation worsening, the basic Right to life granted under Article 21 of the Constitution is being denied. Cases of fake encounters, rising death toll in the prisons, AND UNNECESSARY DELAY IN INVESTIGATION MAKES ONE FEEL INSECURE AND VULNERABLE.

Police dealings & working especially at the police station level make policing look like a commercial venture. The general public looses trust in the department by such incidents and is lead to believe that everything can be done if one is in position to talk in terms of money or power with the police officials.

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