The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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State cops tops in force Net-working

It’s official. The West Bengal Police is the country topper when it comes to intra-cop computerisation. At a recent meeting, the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) has not only put the state police above fast-track states like Andhra Pradesh, but also selected West Bengal additional director-general Ajoy Prasad as task-force leader.

“It is a recognition of our efforts over the past year or so, which we presented to the All-India Police Meet,’ said director-general of police Dinesh Vajpai. “With the technical support of Webel, our officers have developed specialised software systems not only to document crime and criminal records but also to monitor the police personnel management system (PPMS), the special communication system called Police Net (a kind of specialised e-mail) and the status of thousands of police transports and inventory of clothing and equipment, all at a cost of around Rs 75 lakh.

“And it is not just in theory. We have already built up the PPMS for a 65,000-strong state police force, inclusive of service records, postings, rewards, punishments and even details of the family members, and these records are regularly updated.”

After lauding the state’s ‘achievement at the ground level’, Prasad told Metro: “Two other systems, namely Thana Criminal Tracker and File Tracking System, are in the pipeline, which will be immensely useful once the Local Area Network (LAN) becomes operational.”

In fact, the first phase of in-house computerisation has already been completed in three districts: South 24-Parganas, North 24-Parganas and Howrah. “Already, all police stations and courts within these three districts (96 in all) are being computerised and the personnel have also been trained. Records like FIRs,chargesheets and final reports are in the process of being updated,” added Prasad.

DG Vajpai was clear that they would like to extend the cyber system for the entire state police, inclusive of 406 police stations and 52 courts. “The interconnected computerised system will not only improve the efficiency and reaction levels of the police, but will also cut down the operational cost in the longer run.”

Take either the communication or the transport sector. In the first case, the present wireless system cannot cope with the huge number of inter and intra-department messages being exchanged and more often than not special messengers have to be sent, pushing up the cost. “The specially-designed Bengal police e-mail service will solve the problem,” assures Vajpai.

As for the transport department, the Digital MTO (Motor Transport Officer) system will take care of everything related to the huge fleet.

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