OUT OF the seven recommendations that the State Police Complaints Authority (SPCA) made to the state government, two were against city-based IPS officers, presently holding the charge of deputy commissioner of police and additional commissioner of police.
A retired additional general of police, P K Jain, who is also an SPCA member, said, “When police officers refuse to register an FIR or in cases where there is no development in an investigation, residents tend to approach their seniors, and even after that if there is no proper action, then these DCPs and high-ranking officers become part of the complaints.”
In one such instance, the complaints authority has recommended action against DCP Paramjit Singh Dahiya (Zone IX) and the previous senior inspector of Bandra police station, Girish Anavkar.
“In this case, a restaurant owner from Bandra had reported a case. Initially, the complainant and his landlord fell out over some financial dispute. The two parties had an agreement over the land till September 30, 2018, but there was a clause in which the landlord had to issue a two-month notice period for the complainant to be able to relocate,” Jain said.
However, after the complainant shut his restaurant at midnight on September 30, the landlord took possession of the property at 12.30 am.
“Days before, after the complainant learnt that the landlord won’t abide by the clause in the agreement, he approached the police seeking action. The police didn’t take action even after the complainant reported the matter at the Bandra police station after the incident,” Jain said.
The complainant then went and met Dahiya but failed to get relief, following which he approached the then Additional Commissioner of Police Chhering Dorje, who then ordered police to register a case 55 days after the incident.
“He had already approached us with the complaint, so we took cognizance and recommended punishment against the DCP as well as the senior inspector,” Jain added.
In another case, the authority had recommended punishment against IPS officer Dnyaneshwar Chavan, who is now additional commissioner of police (protection and security), and also held the charge of DCP (Zone II).
“In a property dispute between two reporters and their landlord in South Mumbai, the landlord took possession of the building in 2016 while the complainants had been operating from that office since 1997. So, the landlord who wished to get rid of them, evacuated the office and registered a false complaint of assault against them,” Jain said.
The SPCA officials said the officers should have ideally registered a case against the reporters and investigated the matter, but not issued an arrest warrant following which they had to approach the court for an anticipatory bail.
“Later, after we found out that they were innocent, we recommended action against Chavan, who was then posted in Zone II, Senior Inspector Santosh Raut and the investigating officer of LT Marg police station,” Jain added.
Asked about the punishment, an officer said, “We usually ask for a letter of displeasure to be issued against police personnel, which doesn’t harm them instantly but reflects on their annual confidential report or we recommend regular punishment.”