Only 8 police stations have CCTV cameras
Despite a Supreme Court ruling, 12 police stations in the city are still not covered under CCTV camera surveillance
NAVI MUMBAI: It has been eight months since the Supreme Court asked the Central and state gover nments to place police stations under CCTV camera surveillance. However, 12 out of 20 police stations in the city still do not have CCTV cameras.
Police sources said lack of funds is the main reason why the apex court order has not been implemented so far. The police stations with cameras have had them installed by private companies as a part of their corporate social responsibility (CSR) exercise. A lot of these cameras have not been working for several months now as the department has no funds for their maintenance.
The Supreme Court had asked for CCTV cameras to be installed at police stations last June in an effort to prevent custodial torture and other illegal activities.
Though custodial violence is not rampant in the city, there have been several incidents at police stations that could have been prevented had CCTV cameras been there.
A head constable attached with the Uran police station stole a bag containing Rs29 lakh from the strong room in May 2014. The police took almost a year to detect that case. “Had there been a CCTV camera near the strong room the case would have been solved in no time. We now have CCTV cameras at our station house, lock up and near the strong room,” said an officer from the police station.
An i nspector f rom New Panvel police station, who did not wish to be named, said, “It is better to not have CCTV cameras than to have ones that do not work.
We have CCTV cameras at the station house. However, t hey do not work properly and the department has not released funds to have them repaired.”
Senior police officers feel it is necessary to install CCTV cameras at all important loca- tions of a police station. “It is easier to monitor a police station if there are CCTV cameras. They also helps keep tab on inmates and unlawful activities will reduce if we install cameras in lock- ups,” said an inspector, Kalamboli police station.
Pradeep Kannalu, assistant commissioner of police ( wireless), said, “We conducted a survey at all police stations across the city and sent the reports to the DG office more than a year ago. We informed them of the number of CCTV cameras required and the types of cameras needed for indoor and outdoor purposes.”
“We have recently received some papers from them and we t hink t his plan will be implemented in a few months. According to the DG’s office, every police station will get new CCTV cameras and monitoring systems,” Kannalu said.