Police Come Under Fire

Narayan Upadhyay

If the finding of a government probe committee on the Nirmala Pant rape-cum-murder case is any indication, the police administration of the country appears to be in an urgent need of overhaul in its style of functioning. Of late, the police administration has rapidly been losing faith of the people as it has bungled in resolving several high-voltage criminal incidents.

The release of the report of the probe committee, headed by joint secretary Hari Prasad Mainali, has suggested that the police personnel involved in the investigation of the brutal killing after the rape of the minor girl might have their hands in destroying or tampering with the significant evidences that would help the law enforcement agencies nab the real culprits. Even after so many weeks of the grisly incident, the police and the government appear clueless about who might have raped and killed the young girl. The DNA report and other evidences have so far proved ineffective in producing clinching proof. The country has thus been waiting to see the victim and her family getting justice.
As the rapist(s) and murder(s) are walking away scot-free, the Nirmala Pant case has now been touted as a litmus test whether or not the police department would be successful in arresting the culprits. The incident has rightly exposed several policemen accused of destroying the evidences and of fabricating wrong charges against the innocent persons, probably with an intention to protect the real culprits and their complicit.
The Mainali report raises suspicion towards several policemen, including now suspended SSP Dilli Raj Bista, for having their hands in destroying the evidences so that the real culprits could be protected. Though the report failed to divulge the information of the real culprits behind the murder of the minor, it has however raised its accusing finger towards several ‘usual suspects’ including the son of SSP Bista, nephew of the Kanchanpur Mayor and two Bam sisters. Some circumstantial evidences may become helpful in getting the real rapists and murders caught, but we are yet to see police taking any action in this direction.
Despite the Mainali report itself drawing flaks for being a “collection of what media outlets have already written or spoken about the Nirmala Pant case”, it has put a big question mark on the efficiency of the policemen who were responsible for carrying out the investigation into the death of the girl. Many of them were accused of damaging the evidences deliberately. The destroying of evidences from the spot where the body of young girl was found is a major reason that has put a brake in the law enforcement agency’s endeavour to nab the real culprits. The police department has, therefore, come under fire from several quarters for its “attempt” to protecting some of its own members in getting embroiled in the serious incident of rape and killing of a minor girl.
While Nirmala case has so far proved to be an image-maligning case, the smuggling of 33.5 kilograms of gold some six months ago provides us a deep running corruption inside the police department. The gold smuggling incident saw many policemen arrested for having their nexus with the gold smugglers. As it appears now, some of the senior policemen who were caught under the suspicion for having their nexus with the gold smugglers were release following the court orders.
The gold smuggling incident which had firmly established a nexus between the main gold smuggler and some police has not saw any policemen getting punishment just because the cases against them were made weaker and the court did its best to release them. And as soon as they were released from custody, they were allowed to join their works. It seemed that the Home Ministry had not been able to do justice to its promises that it would take action any policemen found guilty of their involvement with the smugglers.
In the meantime, the 33.5 kg gold smuggling case has brought another telling fact to our notice. The nation’s only international airport is the main point to smuggle tonnes and tonnes of gold inside the country, thanks to the police-smuggler nexus. While a simple traveler passing through the airport is strictly prohibited to bring in a small amount of gold legally, the smugglers have had whale of a time smuggling kilos and kilos of gold.
The persons manning the X-ray machines in the airport are accused of allowing the illegal gold to go to their real owners. Those who believe that our police department is spotlessly clean would be surprised to know that the chief of the airport police were accused of helping the gold smugglers by allowing them to use their offices to pass illegal gold and foreign currencies.
Apart from these two representative incidents that have exposed the corrupt nature of many policemen, there are many incidents that take place almost every day that show to use how inept is our police department in handling day-to-day cases. While the policemen are accused handing over punishment to innocent people, they are expert in letting the real culprits off the hook.
Despite the recent incidents that come to show us police ineptness in handling many significant cases, there are some genuine police personnel that want to make the department clean and bereft of corruption. However, the police department at present appears to be in tatters when it comes to resolve these cases, thanks to many elements that have become a part of our police department. Political interference, police nexus with criminals and smugglers, the corrupt nature and inefficiency of many policemen have given a tough time not only to the police administration but to the government also.

The police administration of the country is in greater need of becoming a tidy force efficient enough to handle any case of high importance. In the absence of the police efficiency and owing to policemen hobnobbing with criminals, the country can witness a rapid rise in crimes, which would ultimately leave its telling blow to the overall performance of the government. The police administration is without doubt one of the important spokes in the government’s chain. Should it remain inefficient in handling and resolving the tougher criminal cases, then the people start losing faith not only on the police department but also on the government. The government must, therefore, take care of the police administration whenever it shows the sign of its inefficiency and ineffectiveness in resolving such cases.




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