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Police: a case of fence eating the crop

Police: a case of fence eating the crop
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First Published: Mon, Sep 08 2008. 02 56 AM IST

Updated: Mon, Sep 08 2008. 02 56 AM IST
The police department—responsible for maintaining public peace, enforcing the law, investigating crimes and maintaining internal security—has launched programmes to cleanse itself of corruption in several states, but that has done little to improve its standing in the eyes of the poor. Around 78% of below-poverty-line, or BPL, households which interacted with the police think that corruption is “all pervasive in the service”, according to the findings of a Transparency International India-Centre for Media Studies survey of 22,728 BPL households in 31 states and Union territories. On average, 51% of BPL households across the country visited police stations to register complaints; the percentages in states such as Chhattisgarh (79%), Jharkhand (73%) and Bihar (71%) were higher, reflecting their crime rates, said the survey. In most cases, members of such poor households had to make repeated visits to register a complaint. And they perceived “corrupt police staff” to be a hurdle in availing police services in the normal course. Poor households also said that procedural delays are part of a deliberate police strategy to compel citizens to pay bribes.
See full report here (graphic)
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First Published: Mon, Sep 08 2008. 02 56 AM IST