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Police Reforms in India: Issues, Recommendations, Community Policing

Police reforms in India are an important topic for UPSC GS 3 paper mains syllabus. The aspirants must know the issues plaguing the policing in India and recommendations given by various committees from time to time.


Police reforms in India

  • Police reforms has been on the agenda of Governments almost since independence but even after more than 50 years, the police is seen as selectively efficient, unsympathetic to the under privileged.
  • Police in India is further accused of politicization and criminalization.
  • The basic framework for policing in India is provided by Indian Police Act 1861, with little changes thereafter, whereas the society has undergone dramatic changes, especially in the post-independence times.
  • The public expectations from police have multiplied and newer forms of crime have surfaced.
  • The policing system needs to be reformed to be in tune with present day scenario and upgraded to effectively deal with the crime and criminals, uphold human rights and safeguard the legitimate interests of one and all.

भारत में पुलिस सुधार: मुद्दे, सिफारिशें, सामुदायिक पुलिसिंग

Issues in Policing

Related to general administration

  • Poor enforcement of laws
  • Lack of coordination between various organs of the govt


Related to police

  • Unwarranted political interference: NPC concluded that people consider political interference with police as a greater evil than corruption.
  • Lack of motivation at lower levels
  • Lack of modern technology
  • Authority without accountability


Problems of org behavior

  • Inadequate training
  • Arrogance, insensitivity towards public



  • Multiplication of works
  • Shortage of personnel and long working hours
  • too large population to handle


Related to ethical functioning

  • Corruption, extortion at different levels
  • Insensitivity to human rights
  • Absence of transparent recruitment and personnel policies.


Police Reforms in India: Issues, Recommendations, Community Policing_3.1

Recommendation for police reforms in India

  • Ribeiro committee- Police Performance and accountability Commission at state level; replacement of 1861 Act; Constitution of District Complaints Authority
  • Padmanabhaiah commission and law commission- recommended separation of investigative work from law and order and other duties; , soli sorabjee commission, prakash singh case- seven point directives


Reforms in other countries

South Africa

  • Code of police conduct and enhancement of training facilities
  • police/community forums formed in almost every police station


  • Pension for police and prohibition of trade unionism
  • Citizen Forum Directorate to consult communities to understand and get a feedback from them.


  • Police Integrity Commission to prevent police misconduct.


Police Reforms in India: Issues, Recommendations, Community Policing_4.1

Recommendation by 2nd ARC

  • DGP should have a minimum tenure of 3 yrs.
  • State Police Performance and Accountability Commission and state police establishment committee should be established.
  • Outsourcing non-core functions like delivery of court summons, verification of addresses in passport etc
  • NPC suggested to improve the condition of constables.
  • DPCA should be constituted to enquire into allegations against police within the districts
  • Need to have adequate representation from the vulnerable communities to allay their fears.
  • zero tolerance towards crime
  • FIRs should be made more citizen friendly
  • Police Stations should be equipped with CCTVs



  • Deputation to training institutions should be made more attractive in terms of facilities and allowances to attract best talent.
  • Each state should earmark fixed budget for training.
  • All training must be concluded with the assessment of the trainees.
  • Modern method of training such as case study should be used.


Strategy for new India@75

  • Model police Act 2015 to be served as a basis for legislative reform.
  • common nationwide emergency contact no.
  • Integrate lokpal and PCA into police reforms.separate cadre to exclusively look after cyber crimes.


Other important topics for policing

Community Policing

  • The principles underlying is that a policeman is a citizen with uniform and a citizen is a policeman without a uniform
  • Police and citizen act as partners in providing security to the community and controlling crime.
  • Initiatives- maithri in AP, Friends of police in TN, Mohalla Committees in MH
  • Would succeed if its people driven rather than police driven.
  • Should not become a mere public relation exercise but should provide an effective forum for police-citizen interaction.


Gender Issues in Policing

  • Lower rates of conviction in cases of offences against women.
  • Women constitute only about 2% of civil police.


  • NPA should formulate a gender policy for police training.
  • strict enforcement of all relevant legal provisions
  • strengthening of women cells in police stations
  • 2nd ARC: should be increased to 33%


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