In a first for the Maharashtra Police, retired officers who had done stellar work when in service, were honoured Wednesday with ‘Jeevan Gaurav’ awards by an organisation set up by former police commissioner Arvind Inamdar. Three retired policemen, former director general of police Suryakant S Jog, assistant commissioner of police Sam Patel and assistant sub-inspector Dilip Patil, were honoured with a cash prize and a memento by chief guest Ratan Tata, Chairman Emeritus of Tata Sons.
The function was attended by several retired and senior IPS officers, including Sanjeev Dayal, P S Pasricha, A N Roy, along with Mumbai Police Commissioner Ahmad Javed. Calling it sad the “ease with which policemen and their work is forgotten”, Inamdar said, “It was to honour these forgotten men who had done some good work that the awards were instituted.”
Introducing the first recipient, former DGP Suryakant Jog, Inamdar said that apart from his formidable record, one incident was enough to define Jog’s commitment to work, who retired in the late ‘80s. He remembered how Jog, who lost his son in a plane crash, was spotted at his office immersed in work within two hours of the last rites. “He has been a true karmayogi and it is on shoulders of officers like him that we have had the vision to look ahead,” Inamdar said.
The second recipient was Sam Patel whose contribution to ensuring communal harmony post the 1993 riots in Mumbai “was admired by both communities in the city”. Known as ‘Simple Sam’ right through his career, the retired ACP said, “Once we retire, everything we did is forgotten. I am thankful to Mr Inamdar for thinking about our plight.”
The third recipient was assistant sub-inspector Dilip Patil who served at Malegaon and was credited with having such good networks across communities that helped the police in a communally sensitive place like Malegaon. “It is the biggest moment of my life. The lower rung will be inspired to give their best.” Speaking on the occasion, Ratan Tata said the services provided by the policemen “is taken for granted” and that there was “a degree of thanklessness” in the job of the police.