Two in every three policemen suspended by the Mumbai Police between 2006 and 2011 have been reinstated. According to data obtained through a Right To Information application,525 officers and personnel were placed under suspension during the period.
Official statistics shared by the police reveal that 148 policemen (officers and others) were booked for criminal offences ranging from cheating to assault and 85 were suspended on charges of corruption. Figures show that 321 suspended police officers and personnel have been reinstated.
The total strength of the Mumbai Police is around 45,000,of which 6,000 are officers the lowest rank being the police sub-inspector and the highest Commissioner of Police. In fact,25 per cent or 140 of the total 525 suspended are officers,including one Additional Commissioner of Police,who belongs to the elite IPS. Of the officers suspended during the period,81 have been reinstated.
DCP (Zone 2) Nisar Tamboli,the official spokesperson for Mumbai Police,said: The police force takes allegations of corruption and criminal cases seriously. Necessary action is always taken in such cases.
Many attribute the malaise to rising interference from the political establishment. The government runs the police force directly and most powers lie with it. If the police chief is given added powers,the force will be disciplined. From what is seen,postings,punishments and rewards are given by the government and that has to stop. Discipline in the force will come when the chiefs are given power to tackle such criminal cases in the force with a stronger hand, said Julio Ribeiro,former Mumbai police commissioner.
Those suspended included DCP V N Salve,ACP Prakash Vani and three other officers for attending a Christmas eve party allegedly organised by henchmen of fugitive don Chhota Rajan in December 2008. While Vani has been reinstated,Salve retired from the police force while under suspension.
The figures reveal that the highest number of personnel suspended on corruption charges was posted in the northern region of the city police. The data shows that 25 of the 54 suspended personnel were booked by the Anti-Corruption Bureau. As on date,30 of the 54 have been reinstated.
The highest number of criminal cases registered against police officers and personnel was against those posted in the Local Arms unit of the police in Naigaon. Of the total 84 personnel suspended,16 have been booked in criminal offences.
The Protection Branch of the Mumbai Police fared the best with the least number of officers and personnel suspended. In fact,a police inspector and head constable suspended from the unit are yet to be reinstated.