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5) Comment on the urgency to have necessary police reforms in India. (250 words)

Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

5) Comment on the urgency to have necessary police reforms in India. (250 words)


Why this question:

The article highlights the sorry state of policing prevalent in the country and the findings in the latest report on the Status of Policing in India, produced jointly by Common Cause and the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies.

Key demand of the question:

One must explain the issues with Police system in India and highlight the urgency of reforms.


Commenthere we have to express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.

Structure of the answer:


In brief highlight the findings of the report.


Explain first the issues associated and then suggest solutions – 

Huge vacancies: With the phenomenal expansion of the geographic area to be policed and the increase in the number of lives to be guarded, the Indian police, more than in many western democracies, have been stretched and outnumbered. There are only about 140 policemen per 100,000 people, a very poor ratio when compared to other modern democracies.

Over-burden: Police force is over-burdened especially at lower levels where constabulary is forced to work continuously for 14-16 hours, 7 days a week. It adversely impacts their performance.

Risk to life: The risk to life in Police is very high. Policemen are killed in India in the performance of duties than in any other country of the world. There’s no indication that in future the risk element would be less.

Police Infrastructure: The weaponry, vehicles etc. used by police force at lower level is obsolete and is unmatched with the modern weaponry used by the criminals and anti-social elements.

Qualifications and training of police personnel’s: Police training methods have been out dated and aspects of human rights are largely ignored in training modules. Training of police officials is heavily biased in favor of higher level officials. 94% of the total training expenditure is on IPS officers’ training.

Politicization of Police: Politicization of a police force is a major problem as it affects the autonomy of police force making them to sub serves the interests of political executive at the cost of ordinary citizens. CID at the state level has failed to perform because of political cases led by the ruling parties against their opponents and because of excessive political interference by political executive.

Ineffectiveness against new forms of crimes: Police force is not in the position to tackle present days’ problems of cyber-crimes, global terrorism, naxalism because of its structural weaknesses.

Underutilization of funds for modernization: Both center and states allocate funds for modernization of state police forces. These funds are typically used for strengthening police infrastructure, by way of construction of police stations, purchase of weaponry, communication equipment and vehicles. 

Prevailing Corruption: The pay scales of police personnel especially at the lower levels are very low and they are forced to adopt corrupt means to earn their livelihood etc.


Conclude with way forward.