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Delhi Police to curb organised crime through increased fine

India on 05 May 2014
Location : New Delhi, India | Source : India Today; image source: India Today

Rattled by rising crime graph, Bhimsen Bassi, the city's top cop, has directed senior police officials to prepare a list of dreaded criminals and book them under stringent and non-bailable acts.

The directive, issued at a recent crime review meeting held at the police headquarters, will now empower all JCPs (Joint Commissioner of Police) to book repeat offenders and criminals engaged in organised crimes, under the controversial MCOCA Act, passed by Maharashtra to combat organised crime and terrorism, and NSA (National Security Act), a law that allows preventive detention of suspects. The idea is to break crime syndicates and curb recidivism by putting crooks behind bars for a longer period.

Under the existing law, criminals who engage in organised crimes such as snatching, can get away easily, within three to four months of their arrest, on bail and continue with their crimes. But under MCOCA and NSA, bail is almost impossible and punishment is a minimum of three years, said a senior official who attended the review meeting, on conditions of anonymity. Repeat offenders and criminals engaged in snatching, robbery, theft, carjacking and murder can now be booked under MCOCA, the official said.

As part of preventive policing, Bassi has also directed his subordinates to compile a list of habitual offenders in their respective jurisdiction and book them under NSA on the basis of fresh complaints and criminal antecedents. Sound legal opinion will also be sought before the arrest, the official said. The commissioner's decision to go tough on crooks comes in the wake of a recent police data, which recorded a near fourfold increase in crimes from the previous year. The data showed a significant jump in crimes such as vehicle theft, burglary, kidnapping, snatching and robbery, from January to March, in the Capital, with as many as 55 vehicle theft, 26 burglary, 25 snatching, 17 kidnapping and 11 robbery taking place on a daily basis.

The figures had proved to be an embarrassment for Bassi who assumed charge as the Delhi Police Commissioner last year promising to curb crimes, especially of the organised type. But will his new strategy work? At least Delhi Police seems to believe so. Bassi's predecessor, Y.S. Dadwal, who held the office from 2007 to 2010, too was a proponent of stringent laws. He slapped MCOCA against several dreaded criminals and repeat offenders, with as many as 25 cases registered under it in 2009 alone - one of the highest in the history of Delhi Police. The police had then managed to send a stern message by booking some of the most wanted accused including Ravi Kapoor - who allegedly gunned down television journalist Soumya Vishwanathan and BPO employee Jigeesha Ghosh - and gangster Prem Prakash alias Munna Bajrangi, under it. Something, which Bassi too is now hoping to convey, by turning to the law.

 

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