Delhi Police to Hire a Chief Technology Officer

Lt. Governor of Delhi Anil Baijal
Lt. Governor of Delhi Anil Baijal

The Lt. Governor of Delhi Anil Baijal delivered the keynote address at the ninth edition of the Homeland Security programme at FICCI, New Delhi. The theme of this year’s programme was Modernization of India’s Internal Security Mechanism.

Delivering his address, the Lt. Governor began by highlighting the contextual perspective of some clearly noticeable phenomena happening in the country that has a direct bearing on policing and its modernization.

He outlined three such clear developments – (i) emerging demographic profile; (ii) the pace and pattern of unabated urbanization; and (iii) most importantly the rapid pace at which the technology is developing.

The Lt. Governor highlighted the initiatives taken recently by the Delhi Police in response to various such challenges. On harnessing the potential of youth, Delhi Police has recently taken up programs for skill upgradation of youth in collaboration with various corporates using their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Funds. This, according to Baijal, will help in weaning away potential criminals from crime and make them employable and self-reliant in life.

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In response to the potent threat of cybercrime and cyber-attacks, more so in the environment of increasing digitalization of services and commercial transactions, Delhi Police is going to hire a Chief Technology Officer within the Police headquarters to keep pace with global technology developments and help the Delhi Police equip itself to meet the growing challenges.

Delhi Police is already working with young technology students from various government institutions within the city.

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The Lt. Governor also spoke about some of the initiatives that have been launched in Delhi for more effective functioning of the police. One of the main focus areas of policing in Delhi has been to ensure the safety and security of women.

In the process, Delhi Police has created enforcement protocols including a mobile based application, Women Help Desk in each police station, community outreach (Operation Shishtachar), emergency helpline, anti-stalking service, involvement of NGOs, gender sensitization, sensitization of BPOs, fast tracking of cases, etc.

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A nodal unit has also been carved out within the Delhi Police named as the Special Police Unit for Women and Children (SPUWAC), which has taken lead in ensuring that these protocols are implemented in letter and spirit.

An expert group has been constituted which is convened by one of the Special Commissioners of Police to study the root causes of violence against women. This should help in crafting appropriate responses to tackle this ever-growing menace.

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Lt. Governor also detailed about another focus area for day-to-day policing viz. the safety and security of children, for which purpose a special drive has been launched – “Operation Milap” to connect missing children with their parents through Anti Human Trafficking Units (AHTU) established in the Crime Branch and in Districts.

In fact, on receipt of complaint of a missing child an FIR is registered immediately under the ‘kidnapping’ head and information is uploaded forthwith on the Zonal Integrated Police Network (ZIPNET).

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He added that Delhi Police has taken the lead in appointing a Juvenile Welfare Officer in all the Police Stations, where only designated and sensitized police officers interact with the family members of the missing child or in those cases where juveniles require care and protection and when they come in conflict with law.

Lt. Governor also spoke about the need for effective functioning of the Senior Citizens Cell that has been set up in Police Headquarters to co-ordinate, supervise and to monitor the efforts made by Police, different sections of the society and NGOs.

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Apart from a dedicated helpline number and a Unique Mobile App, all Police Districts have now got a functional Senior Citizens Security Cell to co-ordinate various aspects of day-to-day security for them.

Calling upon Delhi Police to leverage technology and social media platforms for more effective engagement and interaction with the community, the Lt. Governor was unequivocal in his belief that Community Policing is the key to effective policing.

Lt. Governor also spoke about the new officer-oriented Police Stations launched recently at Parliament Street and Maurice Nagar police stations, to effectively tackle and address the concerns of the aspirational youth.

Finally, the Lt. Governor called upon the police forces to effectively utilize modern ICT tools for smart policing. He spoke about the initiatives such as e-FIR and Himmat SOS mobile app.

Lt. Governor shared that Intelligent Traffic management systems, integration of CCTVs feed of various organizations, more digitalization of services and minimization of human interface are some of the key things that Delhi Police is working on and expressed optimism in their early implementation.

Photo courtesy: Lt. Governor Office

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Rakesh Raman