The Telegraph
Tuesday , February 26 , 2013
Since 1st March, 1999
CIMA Gallary

Verification drive a flop

Residents of Ranchi have shown little regard for a police directive asking them to verify antecedents of prospective employees like chauffeurs and domestic helps, thereby compromising on their own safety, the recent abduction and murder of a city businessman being a glaring example.

While reviewing the law and order situation in the state on Sunday, governor Syed Ahmed ordered top officials to ensure a verification system for drivers and employees through local police stations and encourage residents to make use of it.

“Applications from employers for character verification of drivers and employees seeking employment in other cities do come to us. But I have not seen such applications from local employers in years,” said an officer in-charge of a city police station, requesting anonymity. Similar observations were made by two other officers.

According to the system, if an employee wanting to hire a driver or a domestic help wants to know about the person’s background, he can send an application with the name, address and other details of the candidate to the circle officer (CO) or the subdivisional officer of his area.

The officer would then forward the application to the police station that the candidate belongs to. The officer in-charge would find out if the candidate has a criminal record and about his general conduct from the locality and send a report, following which the SDO or CO’s office issues a character certificate of the candidate.

A large number of city residents engage drivers and domestic helps. However, no one makes use of the security provisions, if the city police are to be believed.

In the recent murder of city businessman Gyanchand Jain, his driver Mukesh Kumar is the prime accused and is now absconding. Kumar had been sacked by Jain, only to be reinstated.

Two months ago, a worker engaged by another businessman at his store in Pandra Bazar, was caught red-handed while stealing some food items. The worker, however, asked for pardon and was retained in the job. But the same evening, he returned with nearly 50 men and beat up his employer black and blue.

When asked why residents do not make use of the security provisions, president of Federation of Jharkhand Chamber of Commerce and Industries Ranjit Tibrewal said residents have little faith in the administration and the police.

“Besides, in the present system, the entire verification process takes weeks and in the meantime, the driver or worker could move to another employer. The manual system of applying for character verification is outdated and an online system should be introduced,” said Tibrewal.

Interestingly, it was the chamber members who called on the governor a day after Jain’s murder and urged him to set right the character verification system of drivers and employees.

Senior SP of Ranchi Saket Kumar Singh agreed that the verification system needed to be streamlined. “Setting up an online system of applying for character verification would take time. But, in the present system too, we can give the character verification of workers or drivers in a day or two,” he said, urging residents to have faith in the system and apply for the same.

Singh added that employers have to be very alert while dealing with personal staff.