The need for reforming the police system in India has been recognized for many years. The system of policing in our country is essentially based on the Indian Police Act of 1861, which was designed to sustain the British colonial rule. Since Independence, several attempts have been made to devise a statutory framework for an effective, accountable and people-friendly police service, but the considered recommendations of various expert committees and commissions have largely been ignored. Although many states have enacted their own versions of the Police Act, the basic framework of these Acts and their supporting structure, namely the Indian Penal Code, the Criminal Procedure Code and the Civil Procedure Code, remain largely unchanged.
Deficiencies on this front have led to decline in trust in the state’s capacity to protect life and liberty and to enforce rights. Also with the ever increasing instances of gross lapses in police conduct vis a vis citizens it is necessary that trust between citizens and the police is restored. This can only happen if there is transparency and basic accountability in the day to day functioning of the police and police stations. The deficiencies in this vital area need to be plugged through Police Reforms, better citizen police interface, transparency, accountability, effective and integrated approach to public order maintenance, etc.
The last few years have witne.....