New chief for cop complaint authority

India on 05 August 2013
Location : Kochi, India | Source : Times of India. Image Source: Flickr User Bopuc

KOCHI: Finally, people in the district - who have been facing harassment from police personnel - can heave a sigh of relief. After eight months, the functioning of the district police complaints authority (DPCA) has been streamlined with the appointment of new chairman. The post was lying vacant since December 2012.

According to sheristadar and DPCA secretary Abraham Fitzgerald Michael, judge M C George was appointed as the chairman of the authority and a sitting would soon be held to study the complaints filed by citizens. "The new judge will decide on the date. We have been receiving a lot of complaints over the past couple of months," he said.

As per the data available with the authority, so far 11 complaints were received in 2013. The authority had received 61 complaints against police personnel in 2012 while it was 60 in 2011. The authority, since its inception in 2007, had received over 260 complaints. Officials said that of the 67 complaints settled by the authority till date, only in four cases did the authority recommend action against policemen.

"We are taking all efforts to minimize the incidents of police harassment. Recently, the city police commissioner has issued a new set of behavioural guidelines to police personnel while conducting vehicle checks," a police officer said, adding that 30 home guards were terminated following complaints against them for harassing motorists.

"The department has been tough on personnel who harass public. Action was taken against nearly 10 personnel in connection with various harassment incidents in the last couple of months," he added.

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