Sumeet Moghe writes:
Reliable, useful journalism needs your support.
Over 600 readers have donated over the years, to make articles like this one possible. We need your support to help Citizen Matters sustain and grow. Please do contribute today. Donate now
Bangalore City Police needs to answer – How long is the lunch break at a police station?
I’m just back from a thoroughly unprofessional experience at MICO layout police. This is with regard to my passport verification. The constable had arrived at my home on Saturday and after taking my neighbour’s signatures, asked me to visit the police station with a list of documents and 3 passport size photos between 10AM and 6PM.
I visited the police station at 1420 today. There was no one in Room #1 when I arrived and there was one more person waiting to get their police verification done. I waited till the policemen arrived in the room. They came in by 1430 or so and then started chatting amongst themselves. At 1438, they told us to come “after lunch”.
When I verified what time “lunch” gets over, they said 1630. This can’t obviously be true and if it is, then can someone explain why the slip I received said I should visit between 10AM and 6PM?
When I went into the room adjoining the SHO’s room to complain about this, they said that the officer is not around, which is why they can’t accept my documents. Is this even true? And are you saying that for all of the hundreds of passport applications you receive the SHO actually looks through each set of verifications?
I also want to point out some really rude behaviour by the police constable in Room#1. He behaved very rudely with the other boy who was in there for police verification. This boy was wearing three fourths and was decently dressed. The policeman (who himself was in plain clothes) first spoke to him in Kannada and said “ಊಟದ ನಂತರ ಬಂದು”. When the boy couldn’t understand he used the word “lunch” and said something incomprehensible. The boy still couldn’t understand and said he doesn’t understand Kannada, when this policeman raised his voice and said “Lunch is Kannada?”. As the boy was leaving the room, the policeman pointed at him and said, “Tomorrow come in full pants. This is not a market.”
Is the police now going to dictate a dress code? Are they going to start impinging on civil liberties? Where does this end? Is the job of the police to provide public assistance or to be a hindrance?
I took time outside office work and looking after my daughter to visit the police station. A station full of police personnel couldn’t do something as simple as take my documents with reference to my passport verification. How many police personnel does it take to do something so simple? Why is it that they had no regard for my time?
How long is your “lunch break” really? I would like some clarifications.
And by the way, how many more trips should I expect to make to the police station? Is the next thing that someone will ask me to bribe them with ₹100/- to ensure that my application does get verified?